Promotion during parental leave Posted on 04/25/2019 via BSH Home Appliances Group

Promotion during parental leave

Even in today’s modern society, women often have to overcome a lot of obstacles to balance family life and career. At BSH our employees are the basis of our success. Therefore, we try to support parents wherever we can. That means promoting the perfect person for a specific job, even if they’re not physically present for a while.

Anne has been working at BSH for over five years when she was offered to lead a digital strategy department within Global Digital Transition (GDT) – right in the middle of her parental leave. We talked to Anne about her promotion and how it came about.

Anne, what did you do before your promotion?
I built and led the group “Digital Touchpoint Excellence” within BSH’s Global Digital Transition Unit. The team is responsible for the strategic development of our digital customer touch points. That includes our website, CRM channels, social media, and our direct to consumer online shops.

And what does your new job entail?
In my new position, I’m leading the digital strategy division. My old group – which now has a new group leader – is part of this. In addition to that, the department comprises everything concerning connected home appliances, digital services and all things related to budgets and processes to BSH’s Digital Transition Unit.

How did your promotion come about?
During my parental leave, parts of the Digital Transition Unit were reorganized and the “Digital Business Unit” (DBU) was founded. In the course of these changes, my old supervisor, Niels Kuschinsky, was promoted to Chief Digital Officer and needed a successor for his old role. Two weeks after my son was born, he called me to inform me about all these changes. After I hung up, I told my husband: “I think I just got offered the position for department head.”

So, the promotion came as a complete surprise?
Absolutely! Before that, I was a bit worried about how my work life would look like after my parental leave so this was a great opportunity.

What was your initial reaction? Were you afraid what your team might think?
Not at all – on the contrary! My first thought was: “How am I going to do this?”. I mean, I didn’t even know how to be a mother yet, so everything was a bit overwhelming at first. But on second thought, what could really go wrong? It’s an amazing opportunity and who knows when I’ll get a chance like this again? And everything turned out great in the end, too. The work is challenging and exciting and the collaboration with my team is wonderful. Overall, I’m really happy!

What kind of support do young parents receive from BSH?
I really appreciate the possibility to work from home and to have flexible working hours. I arrive at the office in the morning, pick up my son from the day-care center in the afternoon and then finish off some emails from home in the evening. This means I get to spend time with my son while still covering all of my work, which is great.
Apart from this, BSH also subsidizes our son’s place at a local day-care center. That’s very helpful as well, obviously.

How do you balance your family with your work life now that you’re a mother?
Well for starters, business trips require a lot more planning. And of course, the allocation of my personal leisure time has shifted significantly towards my family, especially since my husband is usually away on business trips during the week. But right now, my job is a lot of fun, so for me, the sacrifice is absolutely worth it.