November 30th 2016

Courage and vision.

The management of change.
DI Dr. Georg Pölzl, CEO of the Austrian Postal Services, Vienna

Within the framework of the “Distinguished Guest” lecture series, organized by MCI Alumni & Friends, the Entrepreneurial School® welcomed the Austrian manager Georg Pölzl.

After completion of his studies, Pölzl spent many years working for McKinsey. Later, he moved to the board of the machine and plant builder Binder+Co, before he became the CEO of T-Mobile Austria, Vienna. After a short stay in Germany, where he also worked for Deutsche Telekom and T-Mobile Germany, he returned to Austria in 2009. Since October 2009, he has been the chairman of the executive board and general director of the Österreichische Post – the Austrian Postal Services.

At the beginning of the panel discussion, MCI Professor Florian Bauer, who hosted the event, emphasized that we have arrived in a disruptive age. In a few years’ time, 50 percent of our jobs as we know them today and more than 40 percent of businesses will have ceased to exist. According to Bauer, businesses can only survive by demonstrating foresight and by reacting proactively to change.

In a conversation with Professor Bauer, the general director of the Austrian Postal Services mainly spoke about the process of digitalization – the alteration of business models – and emphasized that in particular large businesses are affected by electronic substitution, confirming Bauer’s previous claim that foresight and consistent action are essential for businesses to survive on the market. Yet human values as well as the respectful and trustworthy treatment of each other are also of importance, as Pölzl added.

To the question from the audience about how to deal with tunnel vision on executive boards, Georg Pölzl replied that micro-political conflicts impede organizational development and can be avoided, for example, by management training. This is crucial to ridding a business of potential conflict and to guaranteeing its positive development also in the long run. “Such a culture of feedback and performance orientation, paired with management programs, seminars, and team workshops make for an effective team with which one can get things done,” Pölzl is convinced.

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