The aim of the conference is to provide the NextGens a platform to connect, expand their network, and gain insights from a range of leadership and transatlantic topics while they can introduce their own perspectives on these matters and takeaway learnings for their own day-to-day business. Further, AmCham Germany seeks to give the cohort insights to the different sides of the organization, its membership, the NextGen program itself, and exchange with speakers from the transatlantic business community as well as offer workshops on topics such as leadership and diversity, while providing enough room for social interactions.
The conference started with a mix of icebreakers and networking opportunities for the cohort to get to know each other. Prior to the welcoming dinner, Markus Pflitsch, (Quantum Terra AG), joined the NextGens and provided eye-opening insights and possible implications of quantum computing for the transatlantic relationship and the technological advances and changes it will bring about for the years ahead. Our NextGen cohort welcomed this disruptive discourse and joined Markus Pflitsch for a dinner conversation that delved deeper into the connection of quantum physics and the transatlantic partnership. Our Rhein-Main Regional Chapter Chair, David Knower, joined the group for dinner and elaborated on the local role of AmCham Germany, engagement opportunities, and events.
The following day, the NextGens gained first-hand insights of the NextGen program from the Steering Committee members present and talking about the Committee’s role within the organization. This includes how the Steering Committee contributes towards making the program a long-standing network, introduce topics of interest for the NextGen events, and being a vital linkage point between the NextGens and AmCham Germany’s membership.
A world café on current topics including diversity, talent acquisition, new work, and environmental consciousness provided space for the cohort to exchange best-practice examples and know-how on these cutting-edge topics. The team-building motto of the day continued with an activity which invited the group to develop their own chain-of-reactions. Set-up with ropes, ladders, cables, and all sorts of toys, the group started this adventure by first building three dynamic ‘‘reactions’’ that worked independently and later on linked all twelve of them. The physical result: a ball that rolled up and down, through and under, kicking a toy-dog into gear to have another one hit a wall of tin cans. The more important result, however, was the learning of our group: your reaction matters, your input matters, and what you do will have consequences for other – for everything one needs creativity, ingenuity, and team spirit.
On Monday morning, Simone Menne, AmCham Germany President, virtually joined the cohort and talked about her work as the organization’s president, her leadership experience and also gave her personal career advice. Daniel Andrich, General Manager, and Thomas Henneberg, Head of Membership Engagement & Events at AmCham Germany, joined the cohort to further dive into the work of the chamber: the structure of AmCham Germany, the diverse membership, as well as current projects and topics were discussed and laid out for the cohort. To conclude the day, Arvid Nienhaus (Arvid Nienhaus Coaching), joined the group to present his workshop on ‘‘Improving Personal Leadership Communication’’. He provided tools to strengthen values in the workplace, communicate appropriately, and learn from methods to strategically utilize them in day-to-day settings.
As per tradition, one of the days included a site visit to our local member companies and we ventured to our ‘‘Munich Day.’’ We thank Allianz, and especially Claudia Donzelmann, for inviting us to the Munich office and hosting us for lunch. The NextGens learned about the important geopolitical challenges of the current times and what they might mean for their individual businesses and sectors. Following the lunch at Allianz, the cohort met with U.S. Consul General Tim Liston and his team to discuss current chances and opportunities for the transatlantic partnership. CG Liston especially stressed the importance of networking and leadership program such as AmCham Germany’s NextGen program. Lastly, we visited our member company Alix Partners, who provided us key insights into their Disruption Index and how businesses can better anticipate these changes.
We warmly thank everyone who contributed into making this kick-off conference a success and a special memory for our participants. We are thrilled to have had such engaging participants from our membership delve into the content and talk passionately about the transatlantic partnership and keen to learning more about the possibilities of involvement at AmCham Germany and fostering transatlantic business relations.
Learn more about the NextGen Program here.