Key account manager at THIMM

From a business studies apprenticeship to key account manager for the biggest customer of THIMM Verpackung: Malte Zinnecker (born in 1989) talks about his career to date at THIMM.

Malte, how did you start working at THIMM and how have things progressed since?
"I started a business studies apprenticeship in 2009. During this 2.5 year period I also completed the additional 'European Business Studies' training which included an internship abroad lasting several weeks.

I had already realised by then that I really enjoyed working in sales. Therefore, as soon as I had finished my apprenticeship I started working in internal sales. In this role I was responsible for supporting our Dutch customers and THIMM gave me the opportunity to learn Dutch in language classes. In parallel I completed my evening studies in Business Administration at Göttingen Private University of Applied Science.

Because I not only wanted to develop my skills from a theoretical perspective, but also on the job itself, together with THIMM I considered what would be possible and we drew up a plan. In early 2015 I moved to the external sales team. In my current role as key account manager I support THIMM Verpackung’s largest customers at a European level. I don’t do this all on my own but together with a cross-departmental European team comprised of sales, development, quality management and IT. As key account manager I am primarily responsible for the ongoing strategic development of the customer, team management, order control and the implementation of our 'milestone projects'."

What role does THIMM play as your employer?
"A huge one! Because if you get involved, show motivation and commitment and are also prepared to assume responsibility, you are given a real opportunity to further develop your skills and implement things yourself. In my case the fact that I was able to switch to external sales at the relatively young age of 25 and be given such a big responsibility for key account customers, motivated me hugely. As a key account manager I enjoy the freedom and trust to do my job. I can be brave and ‘just do it’. This is how the best ideas and results generally occur. However, I can ask questions at any time and request support from my boss or my colleagues. This is due to the good, open culture that we embody here at THIMM where challenging thought processes along with a customer focus are in the foreground." 

What have been your highlights at THIMM to date?
"My first highlights were in my apprenticeship itself. For example, when I attended one of the biggest trade fairs in our sector and was able to acquire many new and exciting impressions. At our Management Meeting 2018 I presented a digitalisation project that we have implemented with 'my' customer to over 180 THIMM Group managers. That was of course a fantastic platform and appreciation of my work!

To sum up, it is brilliant how many opportunities I have had so far at THIMM, how I have been able to use these for my own further development and also that the company bestowed responsibility and trust in me at a very early stage. Therefore I am exited what the future highlights will be!"