“As soon as you think you are ‘something’, you stop becoming anything”, you can read on his Xing profile. Why? Ingo Steinhaus laughs. “Ach, that‘s old. But still fitting as a life motto.“ Maybe it is not at all relevant whether he ever thought he was “something”. Instead, we can state: He has become a great many things. Had his apprenticeship as motorcar mechanic at Opel, then: Training as an industrial business management assistant with the public utility company, followed by a degree in communications. Today, he works as account manager at the swb Vertrieb Bremen GmbH, where he is responsible for national medium sized businesses and industrial customers – this man from Bremen is definitely moving. Can we conclude that he is always looking for something new? “After working in telecommunications at Arcor and Siemens Enterprise, my job at the swb definitely was something totally different”, Ingo says. “I make use of everything I learned so far.” And that is quite a lot – apart from his various trainings. Starting with crisis management, sales and conversation techniques, marketing, advertising, conceiving a business plan – the 46 year-old has practiced all the things you need to start a business.
This brings us to our actual topic. Ingo Steinhaus has started something new, again: Since February, he is one of the tutors here at kraftwerk. Supporting OPTI HEAT, he knows and brings stuff that a start-up needs for a strategic positioning on the German market. “There is a clear target audience, so now we have to find good distribution channels. The German market differs from the Slovenian one, as far as I know, concerning standards and compensatory regulations.” Thought has been given to the idea of a pilot project within the swb, so that the exact requirements can be analysed. “Maybe twenty participants using external heat pumps”, the salesman thinks aloud. This means close surveillance, so that they will be able to point out any advantages when talking to the manufacturers. “The question is: How do you acquire customers? What is their additional benefit?” Ingo’s enthusiasm for sales and marketing and the launching of a new product is unmistakable. He certainly is aware of his personal gain in this: “Looking beyond my own backyard generates fresh impulses and a different perspective looking at my own stuff.” Yes, his experience he can impart, but he can also re-activate old skills.
Yet, while he has supervised the concept and synchronized time tables, he has not immersed himself in the technical details of the project. “I am here to support, not to counsel. The decisions are Rok’s – I am not that emotionally involved.” Nevertheless, the fun he has as a tutor is contagious.