Meike Herden

From trainee to Service Consultant

From day one, Konica Minolta has been Meike's employer of choice. She enjoys a trusting and collaborative environment on all levels, combined with the autonomy to choose her own way of working. Customers are the centre of her focus. Her job is to recognise their needs before they do. Together with them and with the help of agile methodologies, she develops the appropriate solution for the situation.
 

After my masters degree in Business Information Systems, I decided to apply for a traineeship. My choice was Konica Minolta because I had a really good feeling about the company. During the job interview I was aware of a good connection between the colleagues and a mutual respect. I had some job experience beforehand, but without the really pleasant atmosphere of Konica Minolta. Out of all my job interviews, the one at Konica Minolta was the most people-oriented and the company became my first choice.
 
So I started as a trainee in the IT department. I worked on developing and customising our CRM system for robotic process automation and business relationship management in different company departments. Wherever there was an opportunity, I tried it out. Everything was always done in alignment with my wishes and interests.
 
Since November 2020, I've been employed as a Service Consultant for the service consulting & improvement department, working on the service portal strategy. At Konica Minolta, we have many different portals. We want to align the service & support business requirements that we offer Europe-wide and realise them in the best and most appropriate portal. It's a conceptual and meaningful job.
 

I like to have time to prepare what I'm doing and then bounce ideas around with my colleagues


This means I can learn a lot and make an impact. In general, employees have the opportunity to make business-relevant proposals and their ideas are looked at and considered, not just dropped in the bin. For example, I joined the Technology Innovation Programme where, alongside my job, I was able to work on a new product in a small pan-European cross-disciplinary team for a period of six months. There, I could develop creative ideas and feel that I was making a real impact.

Konica Minolta makes it easy to combine work and home life. We have a trust-based relationship with working time. I can work in the way that suits me best and people will appreciate me for it. Home working and flexible hours are not a problem, which means I can adjust my work-life balance how I want. Out of work I volunteer at the "Technisches Hilfwerk". This federal agency offers civil protection following earthquakes, floods, blackouts and so on. 95% of the employees are volunteers and we support society in times of crisis. Along with a range of sports, I also like playing online games with other people so I'm quite used to speaking English.
 

quotation marks

"My work is mainly crossfunctional with a focus on customers. We want to support them, add value and improve their experience."

Meike Herden

Service Consultant, Service & Support Division, Konica Minolta Europe

At Konica Minolta there's a very collaborative and open-minded atmosphere


A good corporate culture includes pleasant, friendly colleagues and the atmosphere's good here at Konica Minolta. All my colleagues are very helpful, they find solutions to make things possible and they give each other regular feedback. Everyone respects my opinion, my knowledge and me. I can say what I want without fear of consequences. There's mutual respect and it’s tangible. I can wear what I want, nobody judges my style. As a human being I feel completely accepted and integrated for what I am. Many young fathers are, for example, taking parental leave and spending time with their newborns. It never seems to be a problem. Our works council also takes care of our well-being with regular questionnaires and is always there for us.
 
I think we have also inspiring leaders. They're diplomats and not authority figures and they always try to find the best solutions. When I started as a trainee, I was able to meet all the IT managers; even the CIO took the time to meet me. While I was on the Technology Innovation Programme, I had direct contact with our sponsor, who is a country CEO, and he really listened to what I was saying.
 
We accept people as they are and allow different opinions, in order to drive discussions. As long as we act as a community and communication is good, then it really works. For example, on the Technology Innovation Programme, we used a democratic process to find a common level of understanding, compromise and experimentation. Of course, our ideas have not all been implemented and we need management to take definitive decisions, but we always have a platform to exchange ideas and decisions are taken based on discussions and Q&A within the group.
 

quotation marks

"I'am involved in various projects and initiatives, not just work-related, and am able to follow new opportunities."

Meike Herden

Service Consultant, Service & Support Division, Konica Minolta Europe

At Konica Minolta we have a free environment that promotes creativity and encourages rethinking of processes, products and the current state of affairs


As an employee, I can decide for myself how creative I'm going to be; for example, I can go to our so-called Agile Thursdays which take place once a fortnight and are open to all who want to join. Konica Minolta is a big company that stretches across Europe and beyond. Sometimes I don't know who I should be contacting as there isn't always transparency through all the structures. Consequently, it's important to network in order to move things forward.
 
I'm involved in various projects and initiatives, not just work-related, and am able to follow new opportunities. My work is mainly cross-functional with a focus on customers. We want to support them, add value and improve their experience. Every customer has pain points and needs. Therefore, as a solution provider we naturally want to resolve problems and offer solutions. It doesn't matter whether it's an internal or an external customer, it's my duty to support my colleagues and to be proactive, recognising customer needs before they do themselves and getting clients to collaborate with us on the solutions. This is quite simple to do, as almost every project now has a channel on our collaborative platform integrating the end user in the process.
 
Working digitally gives us a level of independence from time and physical constraints. All the information is stored in one point that's continually updated and accessible to everyone. We receive information more rapidly than ever and this is a key factor in ensuring business success. Working digitally is a way to become faster and have better information to hand so our decisions are well grounded. We have to stay flexible and respond to our environment so we can take decisions quickly wherever necessary. With the agile methods we're using, we're constantly making improvements. It's important to rethink in our current world, as our environment is moving fast.
 

An attractive feedback and learning culture

In this dynamic way of working, it's important to know where I stand as a person and to understand where I can improve myself. At Konica Minolta, there's a real exchange of feedback. With our performance management system, we also have a more systematic tool for receiving feedback and linking our goals with learning and career paths. Lots of colleagues also post material on our networking platforms and this encourages healthy discussion and feedback. Making employees accountable and giving them the opportunity to drive their own interests represents a great deal of autonomy. I also like that I can schedule in a 30-minute coffee and chat with my colleagues and no-one tells me I can't. The fact that we have a workplace café where we can meet freely with our colleagues demonstrates the free and open level of communication we enjoy.
 

quotes

"As a human being I feel completely accepted and integrated for what I am."

Meike Herden

Service Consultant, Service & Support Division, Konica Minolta Europe

quotes

"During my traineeship everything was always done in alignment with my wishes and interests."

Meike Herden

Service Consultant, Service & Support Division, Konica Minolta Europe

quotes

"At Konica Minolta all my colleagues are very helpful, they find solutions to make things possible and they give each other regular feedback."

Meike Herden

Service Consultant, Service & Support Division, Konica Minolta Europe

quotes

"At Konica Minolta we have a free environment that promotes creativity and encourages rethinking of products and the current state of affairs."

Meike Herden

Service Consultant, Service & Support Division, Konica Minolta Europe

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