Living with the coronavirus at Krones Part 7: we do more

“Just do it – and don’t stress about change” – That was the title our author Anna Ulmer gave to her recent blog article on a trainer workshop held last November. And this motto fits in perfectly with what three of my colleagues did right in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic: they showed great willingness to help the company. Let me introduce you to Doris Götzfried, Katja Hofer and Sieglinde Heß – All of them completed an apprenticeship in hotel management and have been part of the Krones family for quite a long time. You would usually find them in the company restaurant where they treat Krones’ customers to culinary delights. However, as a result of the lockdown there were no visitors, and the restaurant was closed. So when short-time working was also applied for in this work area, the three of them said promptly that they were willing to lend a helping hand in control cabinet production where the workload was high.

But this involved quite a few changes for my three colleagues since their workday suddenly looked completely different. “In the company restaurant, our tasks include clarifying table reservations, finalising the set meals, decorating tables and restaurant, welcoming guests, giving them recommendations on food and drink, serving the meals – and last but not least keeping the restaurant neat and tidy,” is how Doris Götzfried describes what used to be her daily work routine. In control cabinet production, by contrast, the agenda looks quite different: “Here, we prepare mounting plates and wiring frames for installation of the cabinet, install individual components as specified in the layout plan, check the plates and frames after installation, and support our fellow-workers there by lending a helping hand wherever we can. Most recently, for example, we cut manhole covers for trolleys for wires,” explains Sieglinde Heß.

This definitely sounds like one hell of a change to me: I am already out of my depth when erecting simple pieces of furniture, which demonstrates my conspicuous lack of craft skills. But Doris, Katja and Sieglinde have already settled in well and got used to their new work environment: “We were made very welcome by the control cabinet production team. Our fellow-workers explain everything to us in great detail and always have the time to listen to our questions. We definitely feel like being fully-fledged team members.”

So the three colleagues made a proactive decision to lend a helping hand where it’s actually needed – a wonderful example of a wholeheartedly embraced “we do more”. Their commitment, their successful teamwork and their flexibility are in my view quite definitely the perfect foundation for getting through this crisis. It also goes to show how you can make the best of even difficult times like this. And Doris Götzfried, Katja Hofer and Sieglinde Heß gained a new insight as well: “We have learned to look at our machines from a new perspective. In the customer restaurant we don’t have much to do with our products. Now we’ve got a much better picture of the sheer amount of work that goes into planning and building a machine.”