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STIHL GROUPWorldwide

Doers

Today, more than 17,000 people around the world work for the companies of the STIHL Group, yet it remains a family organization with its roots solidly in the German Mittelstand. That balance of stability and growth is also ­reflected in the way our people interact and work with each other. Along with a solid foundation based on train­ing and education, which ensures core competencies, STIHL Group companies offer employees individualized oppor­tunities for professional development and advancement, allowing our colleagues to take on new and varied challenges. We spoke to a few of the many individuals who have taken advantage of these opportunities. And we asked Dr. Michael Prochaska, Executive Board Member, Human Resources and Legal Affairs, why STIHL is and ­remains an attractive employer.

“We have a lot of ideas about the type of ­automated and intelligently connected outdoor power equipment that will exist in the future.”

Stephanie Jung, 26, electrical engineer and expert for robotics at the STIHL ­development center at ANDREAS STIHL AG & Co. KG, Waiblingen
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Tim Gegg, 47, Head of the Digital Competence Center at ANDREAS STIHL AG & Co. KG, Waiblingen

“Digitalization was uncharted territory for me as a mechanical engineer. My background is in product development. Still, I try to seek out new, special challenges every five years or so, and I love radical changes. What’s more, I have always received tremendous support and encouragement at STIHL. What will I be doing five years from now? I don’t know, but I’m sure I’ll still be at STIHL.”

Bruce Shi, 31, R&D Design Coordinator (ANDREAS STIHL Power Tools (Qingdao) Co., Ltd., China)

“My favorite day of the week at STIHL is Thursday. That is when the whole team meets in the obeya room, a special conference space. We use this room and the associated obeya methodology to focus on important questions and tasks that may not receive much attention in our day-to-day work. There are clear rules: no interruptions, no phone calls and complete concentration on the task at hand.”

“Back home in Ulaanbaatar, my father had a ­STIHL CHAINSAW. Everyone in our neighborhood wanted to borrow our saw, this ­special German product.”

Erdenetsetseg “Egi” Erdenebileg, 28, Student Employee, IT Department at ANDREAS STIHL AG & Co. KG, Waiblingen

Álvaro Martínez, 27, Technical Service (STIHL SAS, Colombia)

“I love working at STIHL because there’s always something new to learn. Because it doesn’t matter whether you’re a STIHL dealer, an employee at a distribution center or employed at a production site, you always feel like part of the brand, you’re always welcome and you always get support.”

Joe Quartararo, 46, ­Senior Function Manager, Consumer eCommerce Systems (STIHL Incorporated, USA)

“STIHL has given me the ­opportunity to build a rewarding career in my 20 years at the company. I’m in a position to make a regular contribution to the company’s success by developing and implementing technical solutions. Life never gets boring here, and I look ­forward to mastering exciting new challenges and using new technologies with the aim of expanding ­STIHL’s business worldwide.”

“It’s fascinating how many projects the company is working on to best meet the needs of the market worldwide. Being a part of it is a great joy to me.”

Fernando Polgati, 30, Production Purchasing Employee (STIHL Ferramentas Motorizadas Ltda., Brazil)
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Melanie Heyd, 33, Business Management Specialist, Marketing Department (STIHL Vertriebszentrale AG & Co. KG, Dieburg)

“I have been at STIHL for 13 years, working at the distribution center in Dieburg, where I completed part-time advanced training with the support of my colleagues. Employee support is a top priority at STIHL. That is why I was more than happy to come back even after a three-month sabbatical. I have a great job and colleagues I can truly rely on.”

3 questions for Dr. Michael Prochaska

The COMPANIES OF THE STIHL Group broke the 17,000-employee mark in 2018. Such huge growth in such a short period of time requires good instincts.

Luckily, we can say that we are not strangers to growth. With a few exceptions, the STIHL organization has been getting bigger and bigger for the last several decades. Managing this growth requires a multilayered approach to promote the STIHL brand internally and externally.

What strengths can STIHL play to in the battle for skilled workers?

STIHL is very well positioned in the global market, and has a highly dedicated and motivated workforce. We have been investing in facilities and working conditions for years now, and we offer generous benefits. What’s more, in Germany STIHL has been rated one of the ten most beloved family companies and one of the companies with the best reputation overall.

What role does in-house education and training play in this regard at STIHL?

A very big one, since well-trained employees are a key ingredient of STIHL quality. In Waiblingen, we have had our own education and training program for more than 75 years. As a result, the training of skilled workers has been excellent for decades. For 2019, we have increased the number of apprenticeships in Waiblingen to 104. That means we have raised the total number by 73 percent in just two years. Nearly all apprentices and students are offered permanent employment upon completion of their training. In recent years, member companies across the Group have also been successful in rolling out the German dual training and education system to help ensure the workforce is well trained.

Dr. Michael ­Prochaskahas been the Executive Board Member for Human Resources and Legal Affairs at STIHL since January 1, 2012.