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Returning to EQOS

Interview with Olaf (59), site manager with the Communications Technology BU

Olaf (59), site manager at EQOS, looks back on his long career. In August 1994, he started working for the predecessor company of today’s EQOS. He worked as a senior fitter for quite a long time. From March 2021 until April 2022, he was employed by a different company. Shortly after this return, he was promoted to site manager. Olaf is grateful to have returned to EQOS.

What were your motivations to leave EQOS?

I received an offer that was very attractive financially. In the same industry: Mobile telephony. Everything seemed to be a good fit, so I thought it’s now or never.

And what happened then?

Over time, I noticed that I wasn’t happy there. Something was missing. The job, the money, the co-workers: All of that was right. I became increasingly aware of how much I was missing my old environment. Luckily, I had kept my options open to return. My supervisor and my colleagues were delighted that I wanted to come back. So, a little while later I was back in Schwelm. It is a beautiful feeling to be back here.

However, I did not regret the year I spent away. I learned a lot, which I can now contribute to my job. I also learned a lot about myself. How important it is for me to be closely connected to my colleagues. Yes, and I was also missing the trust-based interactions with the clients. What I appreciate now more than ever is that I built a great reputation over the years.

I often had to think of the old adage, “You don´t uproot an old tree.”

“The ‘We’ feeling at EQOS was key for my return.”

Shortly after your return, you were promoted to site manager. What is important in that job?

I would like to explain that in a wider context. I am from East Germany. From Erfurt, to be precise. I am a trained maintenance mechanic. I started in special machine construction during the GDR years. Individuality has always been an interest of mine. Just like EQOS: Every construction site is different. This is fascinating to me time and again. Of course, there are many regulations and processes. But I also like to improvise. As a senior fitter, I always particularly cared for the craftsman aspects.

Now, as a site manager, I can benefit from my long experience as a senior fitter. All this practical expertise is now a great advantage for me. Certainly, my job these days is more about planning and organisation. I particularly enjoy having discussions with clients or fitters at the construction site but also making arrangements with subcontractors. I am grateful for the help I received from colleagues when I was shown the ropes in my new area of responsibilities. And the project managers support me wherever they can.

Which challenges do you see for the future?

Clearly the area of human resources. For example, how can we convince young people that EQOS is truly a good employer? How important a coherent workforce really is. That all employees are part of a greater whole. To help design the future to some extent. I hope I can make a small contribution to this.

You have a great deal of responsibility. What do you do in your free time to unwind?

During the week, I don’t have a lot of time for that. Home is in Erfurt after all, and that is where I spent my weekends. So I spend a lot of time on the road. Commuting has always been a part of my life. What’s important to me is relaxing when I’m on vacation. I love spending it with my wife in Scandinavia, preferably going fishing. But … I do like my job and when I return to work, I feel like I have come home again. That also energises me.