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A mechanical engineer in the Communications department

Patrick Tlauka’s varied career path at thyssenkrupp Steel Europe

Patrick Tlauka

Where and how does a mechanical engineer end up in corporate communications? At least one person can explain this as he has taken this seemingly unusual career path himself.

“At first you might think it’s a bit strange,” says Patrick Tlauka with a grin, “but at a technology company like thyssenkrupp Steel Europe it makes perfect sense.”

Tlauka has been with thyssenkrupp Steel since writing his final thesis. “I wrote my diploma thesis in the applications technology department. The day-to-day work in application-oriented research was something I really enjoyed and it gave me a deep understanding of our products. This position was the perfect place for me to start as a mechanical engineer.”

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New impetus in sales

For Tlauka, variety and collaboration with different specialist departments are important factors in his working life. When he was offered the opportunity to move into sales and take on responsibility for the technical marketing of products and technologies as well as the acquisition and management of customer projects, he didn’t hesitate long. As a project engineer he supported the sales side of the selectrify® initiative – aimed at developing innovative steel solutions to make e-mobility more affordable – to set the course for a successful energy transition in the automotive industry. Some of the specialist departments he worked with on an almost daily basis were Research & Development, Key Account Management and Marketing.

Interview with Patrick Tlauka

“I’ve always been a fan of technology. Starting a technical development from scratch is an exciting task. As an engineer you can work in all sorts of different areas and all over the world,” says the qualified mechanical engineer with evident enthusiasm. “With the move to sales came the new aspects of customer communication, project acquisition and marketing – which I found incredibly enriching.”

It also led to greater collaboration with the Communications department, which is also responsible for product marketing and thus an important contact for sales.

Tlauka says: “Working with the marketing experts opened up another completely new perspective on sales for me. People often underestimate how strategically and how extensively technical topics are marketed.”

When the opportunity arose to move to the communications department, it opened up a completely new side to Patrick Tlauka’s career.

“I am delighted that there’s always an opportunity to do something different at thyssenkrupp Steel – if you choose to.”

And his “old” knowledge from applications technology and sales isn’t gathering dust; it is actually helping him in translating technical topics into communications measures.

“I’m currently responsible for developing communications strategies, measures and campaigns in collaboration with the Automotive business unit and relevant experts. In addition to the further development and digitization of communications measures I also support content processes relating to market position and automotive focus products in close coordination with Product Communications.

And what is his goal in 5 or 10 years? “Just so things don’t get boring, I’m currently doing a part-time General Management MBA, but maybe I’ll become an attorney or IT expert,” says Tlauka jokingly, “but seriously: right now I’m completely satisfied.”

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