Ndeshi Vatilifa, Rogério Vianna and Tawanda Chataika are taking different career paths at international logistics company Röhlig Logistics
The Röhlig network includes more than 2,000 people from over 70 nations. New, young international employees with a passion for logistics enter the team via the management trainee programme. Here three of them tell us about their different career paths.
Challenging situations encourage personal growth
I was born in Brazil, grew up in Rio de Janeiro and studied in Sydney, Australia. After my Master’s Degree, I started the management trainee programme with Röhlig, based on the local office of Röhlig Australia in Sydney. I then worked in several Röhlig locations and got familiar with many areas such as Operations, Group Controlling, Corporate Communications and Sales. This was a great foundation for my various responsibilities as a Strategic Account Manager at Röhlig UK Ltd.
Diversity at work prepares you for international business
Like many Brazilians, I’m an open, communicative person, but perhaps a bit less direct than a lot of Europeans. I got to know many of my international contacts during my time at the company’s head office in Bremen. It was a very valuable lesson to learn how people from South Africa, China, America or even Brazil – like me – react differently. Simply because we assess situations differently. This experience really helps me when working with our customers.
Personal growth thanks to support from the team
Röhlig’s personnel department did everything it could to support us trainees. We had a fixed contact person that we could contact at any time with any concerns. This was especially helpful in the beginning. You then develop quickly from a professional perspective – and also grow as a person.
With cultural diversity in everyday working life we find the best solutions
You discover new perspectives by working with colleagues from around the world. This also helps to find and convey the best solutions for customers. If I hadn’t had the many different experiences with my international colleagues, my first placement after the Röhlig trainee programme would have been a lot more difficult, but in fact, I was extremely well-prepared for it.
Strong roots – open to change
At Röhlig, we work on many exciting projects with teams around the world – always with the goal of offering our customers the best possible service. I’m delighted when I can make our customers’ business easier by doing so.
The values of home are complemented by new experiences all over the world
I was born and raised in Namibia - a country with 2.5 million inhabitants and more than eleven large ethnic groups, each with a unique culture, traditions and beliefs. All are connected by basic human virtues, compassion and humanity. My ethos and values are strongly influenced by my Namibian upbringing.
I have also lived and worked in the United States for nearly two years. It has been fascinating to see how interconnected the world is and how we all need each other to realize the change we so desire. Living and working in Germany gave me a unique opportunity to immerse myself in the European way of life. On my journey so far I have met many great people and learned to go through life unbiased. Every person and every place has a story and you never know what you will learn next.
My experience with the UN
Before I came to Röhlig, I worked for the United Nations for two years. There, I worked on projects that focussed on promoting global action in the fields of health, social inequality and development. Working at the UN was exciting and gave me the opportunity to work in international teams both from the public and the private sector on issues of global importance. It has always been really important for me to do something for others in my work.
A good team...
In my day-to-day work, I want to keep my team happy and motivated because a lively and positive working environment is very important to allow sustainable change. A happy team leads to positive outcomes, which also increases customer satisfaction.
...has happy customers
As Global Key Account Manager, I regularly work with our global key accounts, both internationally and on a regional level. The focus is on learning about their needs, understanding their global supply chains and operational processes and identifying any gaps. On this basis, we develop solutions that are specially tailored to our customers’ requirements.
Customers are highly individual, which is why it is always exciting to work with them. I am always surprised at how much I learn in each project. But most of all, I like challenging myself by looking for solutions for companies that initiate change.
I make new friends with each placement abroad
I originally come from Zimbabwe, but I came to study at Jacobs University in Bremen. It was a very international environment with students from over 80 different countries. The university had a big network of guest families who looked after students, acted as contact people for them, and invited them to their homes or on trips. My guest family were really friendly and generously provided me with support. As a result, I already knew Bremen well when I started my management trainee programme at Röhlig Logistics.
Employee diversity results in fast, innovative solutions
I find decision-making processes in international companies very exciting. You know that new and unexpected things might happen at any time. There are always new ideas and thought processes. I think that companies benefit from this kind of innovation, decision making and creativity. It helps to shape the next generation of managers and the next levels of thinking in the company. It even often results in faster problem-solving. It all depends on how diverse we are as a company.
Team bonding creates a familial closeness that also transfers to professional life
We did a lot together as colleagues at Röhlig in Bremen even after work. This gave us opportunities to be informal around each other. This brought us further along, both on a professional and a personal level, and strengthened us as a team.
Establishing a professional network
There’s currently one employee in my team here in Chicago who has also completed a management trainee programme. I see a lot of myself in him. When I was a management trainee, I was in a very similar situation. I see him a bit like a younger brother. Even if he moves to another country, we’ll always stay in touch.