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Experience Report

Stefanie Zitzen

HR Trainee

How I joined the Trainee Program at LANXESS:

LANXESS attracted my attention during my work at "Teach First Deutschland". LANXESS is one of the main sponsors of this voluntary educational initiative, where I worked for two years at a secondary school helping pupils with poor grades.

I knew that I wanted to work in the Human Resources field and really liked the idea of joining via a trainee program because you benefit from good insights into different personnel functions and the company in a short period of time. The idea of working abroad again for a while also really appealed to me.

Stefanie Zitzen

HR Trainee

“As a trainee, I particularly like the variety, because I switch locations and responsibilities on a regular basis.”

My assignments:

I spent my first three weeks doing shift work in the sulphuric acid plant! Every trainee completes a period of "work shadowing" in a production facility to get to know the company's core business. Afterwards, I worked in the University/Personnel Marketing department for four months.

One of my jobs here was not only to support daily business activities, but also to help organize university fairs for example. Most importantly however, I was given the freedom to work autonomously on my own projects. One of these was to analyse this career website, and then to think about how this could be made more attractive.

Another project was to create a LANXESS film and I had to work with an agency on the implementation here. A further position which has already been arranged and that I am really looking forward to, is a placement in the Human Resources department in India at the end of the year!

This is what I say to family & friends about my current responsibilities:

For the next few weeks I am working on a Human Resources assignment for the production facilities in Uerdingen, Dormagen and Leverkusen. This department works with employees who are starting with or leaving the company, answering their questions and providing support and advice. I am learning how to work with the corporate software by SAP and support the team with their day-to-day activities.

What makes my work at LANXESS special:

As a trainee, I particularly like the variety, because I switch locations and responsibilities on a regular basis. At LANXESS you notice that the company is still undergoing many changes thanks to its relatively short history.

Lots of new projects and ideas are being implemented. Despite this, there are still things that could be done better within the company and I like the fact that I too, can contribute my suggestions here and as such make an active contribution to the future of LANXESS.

Three (or more) words that describe LANXESS:

Diverse, employee-oriented & on the move!

My "special LANXESS moment":

Having to climb dozens of steps at the outside facilities in icy temperatures in the middle of the night during my production plant assignment wearing a helmet, glasses and protective clothing. You can see how the world gets smaller and smaller below you through the gridded metal steps. When you reach the top you are rewarded with a view across the entire chemicals plant, that is completely silent and appears abandoned (apart from the smoke rising from the chimneys) …and in the distance you can see Cologne and its Cathedral.

What advice can I give a new trainee on his/her first day:

As trivial as it may sound: Approach everyone you meet openly and be inquisitive about the company and the new colleagues. Have the confidence to question existing processes and rules and to contribute your own ideas!

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