“At the time, I was the only woman among three dozen IT guys and engineers”, reports Jennifer. This wasn’t a problem, rather an advantage: “I was able to bring a new perspective to the team and, above all, put stronger emphasis on the customer perspective”, says Jennifer. “Yet at times I had to assert my point more emphatically than my colleagues.” As exciting as IT consulting is, Jennifer knew that she wanted more. She moved to Volkswagen as she felt she would have the best opportunity here to combine technical expertise with management activities. Jennifer took part in a trainee programme for up-and-coming managers. “I always had the sense that I had the same opportunities at Volkswagen as my male colleagues”, says Jennifer. At the beginning of 2016, she founded the Volkswagen IDEATION:HUB, which she has managed up to the present day.
The creative unit helps Group departments and brands to meet the needs of users comprehensively in the context of digitalisation projects. In addition, it identifies start-ups that are best placed to implement these requirements. “The IDEATION:HUB is the ideal place for me to share everything I have learned up to now”, says Jennifer. “We develop the solutions in the team and in collaboration with the users.”
Jennifer has already achieved her objective of taking responsibility. Just recently, she was promoted to upper management at Volkswagen and took on an additional role in Volkswagen Group IT. “As a manager, it is important to me to support the team by sharing my personal experience”, says Jennifer. As the mother of a young daughter also, she appreciates the fact that she can achieve a good work-life balance. “Everyone at Volkswagen has the possibility to discover and share their personal strengths. We are not just employees, rather above all people too.”