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Career Story: Harald Trautsch, everbill

January 22, 2013

Global Executive MBA alumnus

What stages in your life have had the greatest impact on you and why?
Things that involve emotions invariably make a profound impression on you. With every loss or gain that you experience, you reach a turning point –  causing you to grow as a person, see potential or recognize limitations.

Did you originally want to pursue a career in a different field? If so, why is it that nothing has come of your plans?
I always wanted to become a cowboy. Alas, there was no suitable training, and job prospects were not very good either.

How and why did you come to work for everbill?
everbill is a spin-off from a software company. The application helps businesses to optimize internal processes – so they can focus on their core areas of expertise. In 2012, we had the opportunity to rev it up in Silicon Valley; we managed to get a venture capital partner on board and are now scaling our product internationally.

What has changed in your career as a result of your MBA degree? How did the program support you in reaching your career goals? What concrete career opportunities have opened up for you?

Pretty much everything has changed. I quit my job on the board of a medium-sized company to become self-employed again—a decision I have never regretted. I now have a broad understanding of economic and social dynamics, which helps me when it comes to taking in new impressions. The intercultural experience provided by the program was great and has, above all, heightened my ethical awareness.

What was your biggest professional/personal success?

The words of people who felt that they had learned something from me.

What are your goals for the coming year? Your goals in general? Is there still something you absolutely want to do?

I intend to work on growing our business together with my partners, get to know new people and fill as many users as possible with enthusiasm for our platform. We are currently in the process of drumming up investors for expanding our business operations in the USA. Our vision is that companies will no longer fail as a result of not keeping on top of their financial and administrative matters. There is, of course, no guarantee of success for start-ups, but you can avoid many mistakes or identify and correct them at an early stage. My long-term goals are more personal in nature. In particular, I want to test my own limits and push myself to the edge. Work hard, play hard :-). 

What do you consider a “great luxury”?
I already live a life of great luxury. Every day, I am free to decide what I want to do, and then to do it!

What was the last book/movie you really enjoyed?Some while ago, I read "I'm Off Then" by Hape Kerkeling. It is a book I often think back to with joy. Films I like are "The Way" by Emilio Estevez and "Into the Wild" by Sean Penn.

How would you characterize your philosophy of leadership? Has it been influenced by a leadership role-model?

Authentic, transparent and consistent. I like coaching, prefer functions to hierarchies and get to know new role models all the time.

How do you recharge your batteries when you are not pursuing your demanding career?
My job gives me more energy than it takes. Apart from that, I also get energy from spending time with my family and friends, from doing sports and from being successful.

If you could change places with anyone for a day, who would it be?

Barack Obama—who else?

Why would you recommend the Executive MBA (Global) of the WU Executive Academy? What did you like the most?

Every module, every colleague, every professor and every experience was valuable. I have met great people, learned a lot, hardly slept and had tremendous fun. The study trips to China and India were real highlights that have taught me a lot about myself.

Wordrap

My motto in life:
He who dares wins!
I can laugh about:
Children, funny jokes, myself.
Mistakes I am most likely willing to forgive:
Everything that happens inadvertently.
I would spend my last money on:
Food!
In 20 years I will be:
Turn 60-oh heck…

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