Dual responsibility: How well leadership and first aid go together
First aiders are obligatory in every company to ensure safety in the workplace. People often underestimate the important and sometimes stressful work they have to do. We talked to first-aiders at thyssenkrupp about their motivation.
Imagine you have an accident at work. What do you expect from your colleagues? That they help you, right. Regardless of whether you are a board member, manager, or employee, your position is irrelevant. Conversely, however, this also means that if you expect help from others, you should also be prepared to give it yourself. This principle inspires Martin Düssel, transport manager at thyssenkrupp Schulte in the West district, in his work every day. So much so, that he has been a first-aider for over 30 years.
Dual responsibility - boss and first aider
Martin Düssel showed early on that he was ready to take on responsibility. It all started in his freight forwarding training when he completed his first basic course to become a first aider. Many professional years later, he became part of #GENERATIONTK in 2019. In his current role, he has dual responsibilities as a boss and a first aider.
"As transport manager, at thyssenkrupp Schulte, I am responsible for the operational transport business in the West District. This includes our branches in Bielefeld, Rheine, Dortmund, Frechen and Haan, Germany. Together with the plant managers, logistics managers and planning managers, we take care of all the logistics." No easy task. He also has a lot on his plate. When the incidence of the coronavirus permits, he spends a lot of time in the local sites. There, he takes care of the organization, project management, process handling, and cost management in the area of transport
Can't do, won't do
Despite the many to-dos that define his daily work routine, Martin Düssel believes: "Many tasks don't protect you from taking on responsibility." After all, it is not that much effort to be a first responder. "It's not like you're actively out as a first responder day after day. That is more of an exception. At least once a year, you should participate in continuing education. Otherwise, what counts is being ready to help all the time." That means: In case of an emergency, a first aider should drop everything to help.
As a transport manager, Martin Düssel travels a lot by car. Many dangers lurk just there for car drivers and passengers. Whether in private, on the way to work, or arriving at a branch office: Martin Düssel is always ready to help in an emergency. "Since I work from different locations, this naturally benefits a wide variety of colleagues. Moreover, I act as a multiplier. That is why I am happy about every person, who becomes part of our network of first aiders at thyssenkrupp Materials Services. You can never have too many helping hands," Martin Düssel smiles.
Leading by example
For him, being a willing first responder has a lot to do with solidarity. However, it also has to do with his leadership role. "We managers can't expect our employees to get involved alongside their day-to-day work if we don't do it ourselves. We have to set an example," says Martin Düssel.
For him, managers already bring good prerequisites and characteristics for first aid from their actual everyday work. "In an accident situation, one person has to take responsibility. However, this does not mean that they do everything on their own. Rather, they should seek support from others," Martin Düssel explains. While one person fetches the first-aid kit, the other can call 112. There is plenty to do. However, the tasks have to be coordinated. "Managers are used to giving instructions. Others may have it in their blood. But some still have to practice it. But you also learn that in training courses," says Martin Düssel.
No fear of making mistakes
Some people are afraid of doing the wrong thing in an accident situation. For Martin Düssel, this is a contradiction in terms: "You can't do anything wrong unless you don't do anything at all. That is the worst thing you can do. The bandage does not have to fit perfectly. Only the direction should be right, but you can learn all that!" He appeals to his colleagues: "Always remember: You are neither a doctor nor a paramedic, but a first-aider. In this role, sometimes a good word or a band-aid is enough. And if things do get serious, just call in the professionals."