Birgit Engler is a consultant who specializes in purchasing and supplier management. A principal at Porsche Consulting with a degree in business administration, she always works closely together with her team and her clients – from a wide range of industries.
You joined Porsche Consulting in 2006 and are now leading your own consulting team. What has your career path looked like?
Birgit Engler: After training as an industrial clerk I studied international business administration. Even back then, practical experience was very important to me – which is why I worked as an intern and a degree candidate at Porsche Consulting. Following a traineeship and my first job as a strategic purchasing specialist in the automotive supply industry, I returned to Porsche Consulting as a consultant in 2006. Today I’m responsible for the procurement and supplier management division.
Do you follow a specific career strategy?
Birgit Engler: I pursue clear, long-term goals and do not let obstacles knock me off course. I have high standards of quality for my work. I also place a high premium on good working relations with my clients and colleagues, because you can only achieve the best results by working together. Not least of all, it’s important for me to feel pride in my work and to do it out of conviction.
What have been the biggest influences on your career thus far?
Birgit Engler: My parents run a company, in which I also worked when I was young. It taught me that you have to be committed to get something back. For my first job I spent several months working in Japan, which had a huge influence on me. Although the foreign culture and language were often quite challenging, I enjoyed very good working relations with my Japanese colleagues. There was a high level of respect and mutual support. And working with Porsche Consulting has enabled me to grow further, especially in the opportunities to assume responsibility and the courage to make decisions, as well as in dealing with people.
What is special about the work at Porsche Consulting?
Birgit Engler: The corporate culture is something special. The working atmosphere is professional, but also very warm. We have a strong team spirit, a high level of solidarity, and a pronounced culture of feedback. We work hard, but also have a lot of fun. The people here also form a lot of friendships with each other outside of work.
You work in a male-dominated field. What is different about that?
Birgit Engler: To be honest, sometimes I ask myself that question but don’t see any differences. At any rate women do this job every bit as well as men. They might even have advantages because they often have more empathy and communication skills. My female colleagues and I work on all the projects and are very successful.
What would you tell young women who are interested in a consulting job?
Birgit Engler: I would like to see more women at Porsche Consulting, and can definitely recommend it as a career choice. You can shape a lot of things here, while getting to know interesting people. It’s important to be open to new experiences and also to have a critical eye for existing structures. In addition, I’d recommend that you don’t try to change who you are, but rather be authentic, and also dependable at the same time.