Christiane talks about her career at SMA and the importance of new perspectives
Christiane Schumacher spent seven years working in SMA’s marketing team. She then sought fresh challenges and acquired experience in other industries and functional areas. But now she’s back at SMA, heading Business Development & Partner Management. In this interview, she tells us why she came back to us and what she has learned during her career.
When you look back on your career so far, what aspects and tasks did you enjoy the most?
I really enjoy working on interdisciplinary projects like the networking of market sectors and customer groups. I love anything that involves bringing together a range of complex aspects so that they generate added value for customers. I find it extremely fulfilling to help cultivate these ideas and turn them into a success.
You left SMA for a while and worked in various other companies. Why did you leave?
I spent a long time at SMA working in the marketing team and was curious to explore new perspectives. By directing my gaze outward, I wanted to encounter new challenges. Taking on other positions in my life gave me the opportunity to gain a greater understanding of other areas like product management and sales and services. These new perspectives have been incredibly helpful for me in strengthening a mindset geared toward interdisciplinary interconnectedness. It’s really exciting to bring this newfound knowledge to my latest role.
“The energy transition needs not only strong personalities who possess expertise and broad experience and who can act as role models, but also more women to help shape it.”
Why did you come back to SMA?
I’ve always felt very close to SMA – even after I changed jobs. And this bond was an important reason for coming back. I feel right at home again. At the very start of my career, I made exactly the right decision in applying to SMA and entering the solar industry. I’ve experienced numerous phases and changes in the company and seen how important it is to acquire new insights and perspectives and feed these back into my current role. As a result, I can support the energy transition armed with fresh knowledge.
SMA still employs a lot more men than women. How have you experienced this in your everyday working life?
I personally have no problem with working in male-dominated areas. I don’t feel uncomfortable or in any way limited here as a woman. Quite the opposite, in fact, because the teamwork here is extremely helpful and constructive.
Nonetheless, I would love to see more women working in this industry, especially because of the different perspectives this would offer – whether inside the company or beyond. When it comes to reaching out to different customer groups, for example, more female expertise would be a massive boon for us.
“When it comes to reaching out to various customer groups, more female expertise would be a massive boon for us.”
What message would you give women who are just about to embark on their professional careers?
Be confident and don’t be intimidated by big titles or demonstrations of power by your male companions. Play to your strengths and stand firm on the issues that matter to you and where you want to make a difference.
Thanks for the interview, Christiane.
Do you want to actively shape the energy supply of the future? Then SMA is the right place for you. Take a look at our job offers and find out about your opportunities and benefits at SMA!
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