Interview with Dr. Erich Bröker
In this interview, Dr. Erich Bröker, CEO of the Jagenberg Group, talks about the background to the creation of Jagenberg's brand identity and explains the power of "Create.Future.Together."
Our goal was to develop an unmistakable, authentic brand identity with the strengths and commonalities of our group of companies. Until now, Jagenberg has often been perceived as a group of individual companies standing side by side - with the result that the synergetic interaction as a group was not sufficiently recognizable. Only through an umbrella brand with a strong external impact can we differentiate ourselves from other market players, expand our name recognition and strengthen the position of the individual companies with their established product brands. The workshops were an ideal vehicle: A common brand that appears absolutely genuine and credible can only be created if all companies actively help shape the brand personality of the Jagenberg Group.
To this end, we have exploited the advantage of a medium-sized, dynamic group of companies: our creative options are not restricted by the tight corset of a large corporation in which everyone has a fixed role. Instead, we can determine our own development, openly discuss ideas, and work hand in hand with our employees to make the Group more successful - in the knowledge that together we can achieve more. This shows a great deal of appreciation for and trust in our employees.
How did you proceed in detail?
We held a total of seven workshops at our subsidiaries in the second half of 2019; in America and India in the form of video conferences. In this way, we were able to learn a lot about the identity of the individual companies, their perception of the Group, and their wishes and ideas. Supplemented by the results of a customer survey, we used the insights gained as the basis for developing the umbrella brand in the next step. It was important for us to formulate an overarching identity and orientation for the Group that would be supported by everyone. Only a genuine, authentic brand has the power to convey trust and credibility.
"I have come to the conclusion that you can only be one of the leading companies in the world if you combine and focus forces. This applies to human and financial resources as well as to management attention.
This results in the claim of our aligned group to be the leader in processing web-shaped materials - through technology-driven, organic growth and targeted acquisition."
Dr. Erich Bröker, CEO Jagenberg AG
What roles have contemporary customer requirements played?
An essential one - this is already shown by the fact that we also conducted a customer survey to develop the brand identity. It is precisely BECAUSE we focus on the needs of our partners that we are one of the world's leading companies for processing web-shaped materials. When talking to new customers, for example, I make it a point to convey our values personally. This approach is not a matter of course, but I firmly believe that you can only establish long-term, mutually successful partnerships if you first prepare the ground for cooperation based on trust.
We also emphasize customer orientation through our willingness to develop customized, individual solutions. This is what sets us apart. Many companies in the mechanical engineering sector tend to focus on standard solutions. We meet the increasing demand for added value and bundled services from a single source through the diversity of the Jagenberg Group's offerings. We see ourselves as a solution provider for innovative technologies and consistently implement this claim.
The Jagenberg Group's mission statement is "Create.Future.Together." How would you explain the will for new, innovative solutions that characterizes this mission statement?
"Create" describes our opportunity to actively shape things, to create creative solutions for our customers with an agile organization and high implementation competence. The will to create is the foundation of our 140-year history. It is reflected in our corporate structure in the form of freedom to act. In a way, this is the USP of the Jagenberg Group: flat hierarchies, short lines of communication and thus the ability to make quick decisions and implement them swiftly. This creative drive is supported - in addition to the solid financial basis - by the values we live by. This applies in particular to openness, honesty and respect: They are indispensable both for developing new ideas and approaches to solutions and for dealing with occasional mistakes. Of course, we analyze the latter in order to eliminate the cause. But fundamentally, we go into solution mode as quickly as possible, initiating the next step toward improving the company in the future.
Which brings us to another important topic: "Future" expresses the future-oriented thinking and actions of the Jagenberg Group.
Right. Even if we assume that the future will not be easier, but rather more difficult and complex than our 140-year-old past: we look forward to the changes it holds in store for us. Its high dynamics will always present us with new challenges, but we have the declared will to actively shape industry trends. We do not look for short-term optimizations, but focus on long-term perspectives, future-oriented technologies, and economic and ecological sustainability. Our values are our compass for achieving long-term success for ourselves and our customers.
"Together" testifies to a willingness to engage in dialog. How is this expressed in concrete terms?
Together" stands for the conviction that we are strong together. It describes both the cohesion within our Group and the exchange with our customers. This is what sets the Jagenberg Group apart from other companies: We maintain an open dialog and invite our partners to shape the future with us. Together, we consider where the markets are heading and which new technologies we can use to strengthen their position in international competition.
Within the Jagenberg Group, we also invite a fair exchange based on trust. Our aspiration is to learn from each other and to be successful together as a solution provider for our customers. "Together" therefore stands for this cohesion and describes the fact that our employees see themselves as entrepreneurs who contribute their ideas because the challenges of the future can be mastered more successfully in this way. This self-image is already bearing fruit in many places.