Franziska Klimas joined DB Cargo as part of her degree in business administration. After 20 years in many different parts of the Group, she now heads the Retail Logistics team at Control Tower in Duisburg. What she really appreciates about her work is its diversity. "It has so many different activities, people, work locations and opportunities for professional development. I don't think there are many other companies where you can find that."
Every day is different
Franziska Klimas's task is to manage her department's 90 employees to provide the best possible service for customers. That includes things like proactively informing people about the status of their shipments.
To do that, the staff in different roles have to cooperate closely and exploit synergies: order management, wagon management, train dispatchers and customer service have to be in constant contact. "Every day is different," says Franziska. "There are days when we have a set plan, and there are days when we need to react flexibly and set the right priorities. Then I'm glad to have people whose dedication I can count on."
Breaking new ground together
When she joined DB Cargo, she wanted to discover her strengths and take on responsibility. Since then she has achieved both these goals. She also found it important to work with people she could learn from. "One thing I learned pretty quickly is that you can never know everything about Deutsche Bahn," Franziska says. That makes flexibility and communication especially important in her job. "When things don't go according to plan, we work together to find another way," she says, adding that diversity is crucial. Having more different perspectives on a problem makes it easier to make informed decisions and confidently break new ground.
A strong team
An organisation can only work as well as its individual employees, Franziska believes. Fortunately, she has great people in her team – people she can always count on for support even when things get dicey late at night. An example of this was the rollout of a new transport concept for one of our clients. As Franziska recalls, "Suddenly a new construction site was put in place, so we had to immediately rework the consignment management and communication channels. That worked out really well, which isn't something you can take for granted when you're providing 24/7 service with shift work." Her team members share knowledge and experience efficiently so that everyone can benefit from each other.
Recognising limits and finding solutions
Franziska sees being a driver of change as both the biggest challenge in her daily work and the biggest opportunity. "Some things simply can't be changed quickly. The challenge for me is to acknowledge that and change the way I deal with them instead," she says. For her, having so much freedom to shape her daily work is a great opportunity and a privilege to be carefully handled. It's also why she is passionate about promoting her job, especially to women, who often don't consider logistics as an attractive option when choosing a career. "Logistics often only becomes visible when something goes wrong. But it's worth taking a look behind the scenes and asking where our daily necessities actually come from. Then you'll quickly see how much variety there is in our industry."