The Otto Group with online sales of 7 billion Euros is one of the world's largest online retailers. With 123 major companies, it has the prescence in more than 30 countries in Europe, North & South America as well as Asia. It is active globally consisting of a group of retailers & retail-related service providers with around 50,000 employees & sales of 12.5 billion Euros.
The Founder of the company, Werner Otto wrote an important chapter in German post-war history & within 10 years, the mail-order company, whose product range consisted of just 28 pairs of shoes, had become a company with 1,000 employees & an annual turnover of DM 1000 milion.
I had the opportunity to attend an event orgarnised by the Marketing Club Hamburg which took place at the beautiful 'Loft06', an exclusive venue owned by the Otto Company. The speaker for the evening was 'Jürgen Bock' who is the head of Business Culture, Development & Corporate Values at Otto. He talked about how over the years, the cultural change in organisations has not only been taking place from the managememt going down but also vice versa. This has been brought about the younger generation (nicely referred to as 'Generation Y') who have absolutely no fear for title, thus making them open & comfortable enough to make suggestions to their seniors without fear of being reprimanded or even following the 'correct channels'.
But at the end of it all, such phenomenas has resulted in faster decision making in the organsisation with each and every employee feeling empowered & having the ability & self confidence to believe in themselves & know that they are able to perform their respective tasks.
This means that good management is as always very important because in the eyes of the employees, Mananagemt=the Organisation.
'Denn nur, was von innen her leuchtet, kann auch nach außen strahlen'....Jürgen Bock
(Only that which shines on the inside, can also shine on the outside)
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