An early start for fresh flowers
Diana Schipper was a consultant for six years. Before coming to Porsche Consulting she worked at IBM Business Consulting among others. Today she is active in the fresh flower sector – as an executive board member of the Miflora start-up.
In the lead-up to Valentine’s Day, Motherʼs Day, and Christmas, Diana Schipper can be found at the Blumenmanufaktur, an 800 m2 florists’ workshop in Garching, a town north of Munich, at 4:30 in the morning. That’s when the seasonal business in cut flowers booms for the Miflora online mail-order company. Before all the other employees arrive at work, Schipper and the production head check the incoming goods from the Dutch wholesaler. From 5:30 on, she and up to 70 employees then arrange the roses, carnations, and hydrangeas into bouquets to fill customer orders. Working tirelessly, the team prepares as many as 200 packages an hour for shipment. “At a young company, everyone has to help out in production during peak times,” says Schipper. “When doing so, I often discover ways to make our processes more efficient.” From her work as a management consultant, she has retained her eye for “life-long optimization.” When she joined Miflora in 2015, she applied Porsche Consulting standards to the online florist – and trained the company in efficiency.
After earning a degree in business administration, Schipper gathered so much practical experience as a consultant that she felt well prepared for her role as managing director of a start-up at the age of 29. “In consulting you learn to look at things through clientsʼ eyes and respond in flexible ways to different demands,” she says. Her responsibilities extend beyond arranging and packaging flowers, of course. Her main task is to further develop the continuous flow of business. In addition to private customers, Miflora supplies flowers to many companies. Creative ideas are needed here: “For example, we sent bouquets in the colors of the new collection to customers of the Bogner fashion designer.” Schipper heads her company’s customer service, which also supplies Audi, Sixt, and Air Berlin. “Our products usually have to reflect each individual company’s branding,” she notes. “And that means everything from the greeting card and the vase to the box.”
Only when the last shipment is on its way to the customer does Schipper get on her bicycle to head home for a short night. For she’ll be up again the next morning at 4:30.