Professionals at SCHOTT

Salvatore Ruggiero
Salvatore Ruggiero
Current Position:

Vice President Marketing and Communication

Joined SCHOTT in:
August 1989

When did you join SCHOTT and which was your first position?

I joined SCHOTT as an industrial business apprentice in August 1989.

In which positions have you been working in the meantime and to which position are you currently assigned?

1991 – Offer for a position in Marketing being responsible for fairs and exhibitions
1995 – Change of position to event desk officer
1998 – Additional responsibility for events, exhibitions and the Erich-Schott-Centrum
2000 – Head of events & exhibitions (Vice-Head of Corporate Marketing)
2010 – Head of Corporate Marketing
2014 – Vice-President of Marketing and Communication (integration of PR into the area of

Which measures/ activities were helpful during your development at SCHOTT?

- Various leadership trainings
- Special technical training
- Training for Project Managers
- Cultural trainings
- Compact studies in “Strategic Marketing“

Have you participated in leadership trainings? If yes, how useful were they in preparing for management tasks?

Due to the participation in various leadership programs, which were offered by HR, I always felt well prepared for taking on upcoming leadership responsibilities. A high practical relevance has been provided through role plays which have been evaluated at the end of the course.

Have these seminars been helpful regarding your overall development?

The trainings were very helpful, especially for my personal development. I have learned that perceptions and behaviors of colleagues can be very diverse. Particularly the fact that a lot of misunderstanding arise, because the sender and the receiver of a message perceive its content very differently, was interesting for me. Furthermore, I was trained in conducting appraisal interviews constructively.
Without these training measures both, my personal and my business development would not have been that successful. I am very sure that several conflicts have been avoided thereby.

Have you received support by your supervisors regarding your development?

Prerequisite for these training measures is that the superior supports the development of the employees actively. The employee shall never have the feeling that these measures only consume time and money. The boss rather needs to convey authentically that essential management tools are acquired in the trainings.

Are there special soft skills that you have developed (further) during the trainings?

The most important soft skills, which one should apply daily, are to:
- question the perception of your employees
- listen to colleagues properly
- tolerate other opinions and perspectives on issues
- take time for colleagues and employees

How many employees are you currently responsible for?

At the moment, there are 35 employees in my global team. I enjoy leading such a great and motivated team every day :)
Kenneth Tan
Kenneth Tan

R&D Manager, Electronic Packaging, Singapore – working at SCHOTT since Nov-2007

Work-Life-Balance, trainings as well as internal promotion prospects are promised in the majority of companies – but the realization of those promises is not always taken for granted. We at SCHOTT indeed challenge and promote our employees. Therefore we would like to present the career development of some of our employees:

When did you join SCHOTT and which was your first position are you currently assigned?

I first joined SCHOTT in Nov-2007 as an R&D Engineer.

In which positions have you been working in the meantime and to which position are you currently assigned?

After 2.5 years, I was offered to be transferred to Landshut, Germany (HQ for Electronic Packaging) for 3-5 years to receive more exposure in terms of products and processes. There, I reported to the Global R&D Manger for Optoelectronics (he would to be my boss after I returned home to Singapore). After 3 years, I was transferred back to Singapore to assume the position of R&D Manager, leading the Singapore R&D team. It has been a year since I started in this role.

Which measures/ activities were helpful during your development at SCHOTT?

Because I was transferred to a similar role in Germany, I was able to pick up the job very quickly, as most systems were the same and technology similar. Having to learn German was, in my opinion, necessary and that has helped me tremendously as, in learning a language, one invariably gets in touch with the cultures as well. I like both (the language and the culture) and have made many friends in colleagues. This has enabled me to learn directly from very helpful colleagues, who were willing to spend the time to explain processes and products to me. Retaining the contacts I had made in Germany, my job now has been made much easier because of the ease with which information and ideas can be communicated over the phone, email or tele-conferences. I feel that I can better understand my colleagues in Germany and hence help bridge the differences in cultures between the 2 countries´ colleagues.

This has been my first leadership experience in a job. For a first-time, one never gets sufficiently trained for it, and it´s necessary to learn and grow into the job. Nevertheless, the exposure and on-the-job training I received while in Germany have certainly helped to give me a kick-start in the new position.

The corporate HR in Mainz, as well as the EP HR, were extremely supportive and helpful with the procedures and preparation for the international assignment. I did attend an intercultural class, which was useful in helping me to understand some of the practices and behavior in my host country. Returning home was not as easy as originally thought, but apart from minor hiccups, the process was rather painless. SCHOTT is a very fair employer and expats are well provided for. If given the opportunity to do an international assignment again, I would be inclined to take it.

Sybille Haas
Sybille Haas (Phd)
Current Position:

Head of Industrial Engineering in Technical Services (divisions: process engineering, plant construction, automation, Industrial IT and EMSR with around 100 employees in total)

Joined SCHOTT in:

When did you join SCHOTT and which was your first position?

After my studies and Phd in Process Engineering (Dr.-Ing.), I have joined SCHOTT in March 1998 in the central area of „Research & Development“ as „Officer Process Development”.

In which positions have you been working in the meantime and to which position are you currently assigned?

Having started in the field of R&D I took over the position as “Sub-project manager” in the Business Unit CRT with the aim to increase the yield in this BU. After one year I was permanently appointed to the division “TV-Glass” as “Head of Production” for one of the glass melting tanks. After six month I was responsible for the entire coordination of all tanks in this unit for about three years in total. Managing approximately 30 industrial workers in a four-shift operation and three engineers went hand in hand with this position.

Subsequent to these activities in production, I was involved in the expansion of the new business „Specialty glass recycling“ and became Head of this area after its establishment. Being part of SCHOTT for four years at this date, I took over the direct responsibility for five employees for the first time.

After this division has been closed and after a short maternity leave, I returned as a “Strategic Purchaser” and “Key Account Manager” for purchasing capital goods in the Corporate Function “Global Purchasing”. After nine months, I received a new opportunity to being assigned to a leadership position in the central area of melting technology, which I gladly accepted.

For the next two and a half years I worked as Head of project planning for melting plant construction, guiding fifteen employees. After another short maternity leave, I took over the position of „Head of department“ in the area of melting plant engineering with a lot of sub-divisions (Project Planning, Construction, Media- and EMSR-Technology) and 45 employees.

In May 2009 the central areas of Technology and Research have been restructured and I changed tasks in „Head of Engineering & Analytical Services“, leading 80 employees and five divisions. Since April 2013 until today I am responsible for the central department of „Industrial Engineering“ with 100 employees and six sub-groups.

Which measures/ activities were helpful during your development at SCHOTT?

I always had supervisors with great confidence as well as faith in my performance and organizational strength. In addition, I always had the impression that they all cared for my (demanded) development measures. By participating in development trainings, fairs, business trips to sites abroad as well as in company projects, I had the possibility to develop personally and professionally. Besides I had the chance to receive trainings in fields aside of my actual activities, e.g. business studies for non-business administrators.

I constantly received opportunities to engage in projects or tasks to also get to know colleagues at SCHOTT outside of my usual working peers. Besides, it is particularly worth mentioning that there is a high willingness to choose rather unconventional ways at SCHOTT. The best example is that despite my pregnancy I have been offered prospects for career advancements.

The fundamental basis for my career is the good conditions at SCHOTT with regard to combining work and family life. Especially the daycare facility for children as well as the approval to work remote with flexible working hours enables my occupational development.


Did you already have any previous leadership experience before you joined SCHOTT?
If your first managerial position has been at SCHOTT, did you feel sufficiently trained and prepared regarding your new challenges?

As I have started at SCHOTT right after graduation from University, I never occupied a leadership position in another company. To prepare myself for a managerial position I attended a lot of leadership trainings at SCHOTT and read extensive literature.

Moms & Leadership:

How flexible are you in terms of organizing your working day in order to combine work with your family life?

My personal ambition is to be present in the core hours. In bottleneck situations, I am lucky to being able to work remote or at off-peak times. Right from the start, my children (7 and 10 years old) were well looked after in full-day care including a day nanny.

Have you already been assigned to your managerial position before you were having a child?

Immediately after the birth of my first child I moved from a leadership position to the Purchaser function. However, I occupied a managerial position again very soon and took over increasingly more leadership responsibility after the birth of my second child.
Georg Sparschuh
Georg Sparschuh
Current Position:

President SCHOTT Glass India Pvt. Ltd, Tubing Division

Joined SCHOTT in:

When did you join SCHOTT and which was your first position?

In 1984 SCHOTT launched a R&D project developing electric controlled thin film layers for automotive applications. Joining the organization as an electronic expert I took over responsibility for the metrology and system integration within this product development.

In which positions have you been working in the meantime and to which position are you currently assigned?

As SCHOTT’s core business was different to my expertise, my originate plan was to stay with the organization for some years only. But by frequently offering new challenges and opportunities I realized that SCHOTT is a preferable employer and therefore never had a reason to leave. When joining the SCHOTT TV Glass department in younger years I was aware that this product was close to the end of its lifecycle. Therefore, I had to anticipate upcoming changes in job scope and function right from the beginning. Shifting from R&D via engineering to production I made my path from an expert to a management career. This development had been continuously supported by SCHOTT HR, ending up in assignments at Czech Republic, Singapore and India. Currently, I’m heading the Pharma Tubing Factory in India, SCHOTT’s biggest glass melting facility in Asia.

Which measures/ activities were helpful during your development at SCHOTT?

From an early stage of my career I took responsibility for glass melting facilities. Those full continuous productions are demanding for highest attention at any time, which requires strong team members who respect each other and act responsible. Developing and living the corporate values is also supported by trainings and coachings. In the mix of day to day learnings, intercultural experience, self-studies and trainings, my self-development as well as my professional development went hand in hand.

Did you already have any previous leadership experience before you joined SCHOTT? If your first managerial position has been at SCHOTT, did you feel sufficiently trained and prepared regarding your new challenges?

On my assignment previous to SCHOTT I gained some leadership experience, but this was at a young age and I’m sure that no one has developed full leadership skills at this stage. Those skills are the result of self-development, experience in life and mastering challenging tasks. The support by a mentor enhances these learnings. SCHOTT has always been a good mentor to me, either as an organization that is providing the right trainings at the right time or as colleagues giving helpful inputs.

About international assignment:

Have you been sufficiently informed and supported before you were sent abroad?

Someone moving abroad should not be driven by monetary reasons or career prospects only. The decision should be based on vested interest for different cultures. SCHOTT has got all tools and contacts ready for use, so I was able to prepare myself very well.

Have you received any intercultural leadership trainings in preparation of your international assignment?

Oh yes, it was helpful and eased my start abroad, although the training had been shortened due to a lack of time from my side – but for sure, because of the training I avoided making embarrassing mistakes due to cultural differences.

Did you feel sufficiently prepared regarding your return to your home country?

Who knows what life is holding on hand? The best preparation for the future is a mix of open mindset and well defined personal objectives. I’m feeling well prepared for anything, anywhere.

How flexible are you in terms of organizing your working day in order to combine work with your family life?

Based on my international experience the strict separation of work and private life seems to be a very specific German manner. In India we are spending lots of our time at work and thus develop a better acceptance for work as a part of our lives. For sure, the employer has to contribute by developing the working place to a site where we like to be, in both aspects facilities and working culture. By continuously developing SCHOTT’s sites into such places, we’ll attract the best professionals and will be prepared for a bright future.
Christian Mias
Christian Mias
Current Position:
Vice President Operations North America, Business Unit Flat Glass

Since when are you a SCHOTT-employee? What was your background?
I joined SCHOTT in August 2007 as Senior In-house Consultant at Business Segment Pharmaceutical Tubing. Prior to that I was working for Siemens AG in different functions, lastly as Commercial Project Manager. By training I am an Industrial Engineer, holding a PhD degree (Dr.-Ing.) from Technische Universitaet Berlin.

Why did you choose to work for SCHOTT?
SCHOTT’s size, its global presence and broad range of innovative products made the company very attractive to me. The group is still small enough to provide an “entrepreneurial atmosphere” while offering international and culturally diverse business relationships. And when it comes to its product portfolio, I am simply fascinated by the variety of application SCHOTT offers – and the technologies behind them!

What is your job description?
In my current role, I am in charge of the Business Unit’s five production sites in the US, Mexico, and Canada, as well as for its global supply chain activities.
My main tasks are to provide a safe working environment for the team, to drive productivity improvements and, thus, cost competitiveness, and to strategically develop our capabilities so that we can offer exciting new products and services to our customers. Of course, this requires a close cooperation with all business functions, primarily with Sales and Innovation.

How would you describe the working atmosphere at SCHOTT?
The working atmosphere at SCHOTT somewhat depends on the location. When being team member of a regional unit of the SCHOTT group it is similar to the atmosphere in a mid-size company: entrepreneurial and with significant freedom when it comes to solution-finding and decision-making.
Working in the headquarters is characterized by more formal structures and processes and it is important to constantly make sure that such formality does not decelerate business performance. Simultaneously, the company’s vast amount of experts in different functions who are committed to its success makes SCHOTT a very strong network – and the right place for goal-oriented, down-to-earth team players.

Which career opportunities have you taken, so far?
A few years after I had joined SCHOTT in Mitterteich, Germany, I accepted the offer to relocate to Rio de Janeiro in order to become Managing Director of SCHOTT’s Tubing plant in Brazil. Leading the local team, being in touch with customers in most South American countries, and getting to know the Brazilian culture as well as learning the Portuguese language was an amazing development opportunity.
Later on, when I became part of the Flat Glass team, my family and I moved to Sweetwater, Tennessee, USA. In the role of Chief Operating Officer of SCHOTT Gemtron Corporation, the North American Joint Venture between SCHOTT and AGC, I managed a classical “turn around” which, so far, has clearly been the most challenging task in my career. And, of course, the time in the US also came with a lot of interesting insights into the American culture and society.
After more than five years as an expat, I took over my current position, now being located in the headquarters in Mainz but still in close connection with colleagues all over the world.
Thus, in hindsight SCHOTT offered me very exciting, international career opportunities, and I definitely did not regret having taken them!

How do you feel about the compatibility of family and career at SCHOTT?
Obviously, my time at SCHOTT was strongly influenced by international assignments. Relocations, especially to foreign countries, are always a very special challenge, not only for the employee, but mainly for his or her family. However, my wife and I perceived the family-related offers under SCHOTT’s expat program as comprehensive and well-thought-out. And the different assignments actually had a very special and lasting effect on our family, since our three children were born in Germany, Brazil, and the US.
Finally, I would like to mention that from a certain professional level on, it is almost always a challenge to properly combine family and career. It definitely needs good time management skills and the right sense for priorities. In any case, I always felt that the company was giving me the amount of freedom that is needed to properly handle this challenge.

What is your advice for new comers?
My main advice is: be open for the opportunities SCHOTT is providing! Acquiring broad knowledge when changing functions, business units, and even countries within the group is not only highly exciting but also enriches your professional and personal life.

The success stories of some of our colleagues are a prime example for the career opportunities SCHOTT has to offer you.
Have a look at our job vacancies and send us your application!