Werner Kruckow, Siemens Ltd, Ireland
I started out as an electrical engineer at Siemens in Erlangen. Among other things I was responsible for testing the latest drive technologies in electric street cars at customer sites. My doctorate wasn’t a prerequisite for the role, but it definitely helped.
A turning point
After several years of study and very interesting research and development work with Siemens, I found myself working directly with customers. I really enjoyed this and after a couple of years I moved into sales and management roles.
In 1999 I was promoted to head of a global division for ‘Power Supply and Distribution of Rail Systems’. At the time this unit was struggling financially, but with the support of my team we made it profitable again, and received excellent customer feedback.
Advice for graduates
In this industry it’s important to find a solid technical basis on which to build a strong foundation. Never stop learning, and be interested in mastering new challenges.
Skills for future leaders
A good leader should have a strong area of personal expertise, enjoy working with people and follow a clear code of ethics. It’s also more important than ever to demonstrate that you can contribute to the success of your company and show passion and commitment. In addition I always advise people to think positive – the glass is always half full.
Werner Kruckow has a PhD in Electrical Engineering from the Darmstadt University of Technology, Germany.