“We trust each other”
Tímea Holicza (31) currently works in the controlling department at HeidelbergCement’s Hungarian joint venture Duna-Dráva Cement Kft. She started working at the company as a sales trainee in April 2010. She is currently working as a controller in Vác.
István Lenhardt (61) started out shortly after finishing secondary school as a mechanic at the Beremend cement plant in Hungary. During the decades spent with the company, he has worked in various fields. He now works as HR coordinator.
Gyula Zsobrák (61) was only 15 when he joined the company as a conveyor belt operator in 1970. Since 1985, he has been working in the central control room as an operator.
How did you start your career at Duna-Dráva Cement Kft.? What were the first few days at work like?
I had been in contact with Duna-Dráva Cement since I was a child, because my parents worked here for a long time, and took me to company events. Therefore, when I started work as a trainee in the sales department in April 2010, getting to know the company was a piece of cake. Everybody was friendly and helpful. I was introduced to the process of sales, and the regional representatives passed on first-hand knowledge about the cement market. I was shown around the company, and the view from the top of the heat exchanger is an experience I will never forget. It was surprisingly beautiful!
As I completed the practical part of my schooling here, I was also quite familiar with the place when I started work. So, the first days went the same as before.
On 12 August 1970, I was 15 when I started work at the company, which was then called the Vác Plant of Cement és Mészművek. The first days were very exciting, full of new impressions and experiences.
What has changed since you started working at the company?
Oh, there have been many changes – some big ones. We’ve had to learn new things over and over again, and the learning process goes on. Over the past few years, we have formed a great community among the Hungarian and with our German and other international colleagues.
There have been several changes that we can be proud of during my time here. Of Hungary’s cement producers, DDC was the first to introduce an active ordering solution for its customers: in 2013 we launched an online cement ordering platform. And, with the successful integration of DDC’s subsidiaries, we also established the concrete and aggregates business lines, in addition to cement. In the autumn of 2014, seven of our products obtained the Hungarian Product trademark, and four of our products were awarded the National Product certification.
Most memorable for me is how the company name has changed: when I started, we used to be called the Beremend Plant of CEMÜ. After privatisation, we became BCM Rt. – and now we are Duna-Dráva Cement Kft.
How have your duties changed during the time spent with Duna-Dráva Cement Kft.?
When I started work here, I was a mechanic. Then, I became a norm technologist. When the new lime plant was built, I went to work there as a control operator, and then as a facility manager. In 1984, I relocated to the HR department, and was soon promoted to be HR and wage accounting team leader. Since 2007, I have been working as HR coordinator.
I started out as a sales trainee, and, in October 2010, I became the assistant of the sales manager until April 2012. During that time, I learned a lot about sales, and experienced the demand for information in sales. In the meantime, I finished my MSc studies as an Economist in Management and Leadership in Pécs. After graduating, I got a title which was new for the company at the time: sales controller. Since March 2013, I have been working as a controller in the controlling department. This means, that beyond my tasks supporting sales, I have new ones such as providing logistics data, pricing internal product sales, and all the related planning.
I’ve had several positions at the company. First, I was a conveyor belt operator. Then, I was employed in the lab as a sample carrier, and I also became familiar with operating the furnace. For me, the biggest milestone was to successfully complete my schooling – as that was a requirement to be promoted to the operator position. In 1985, I passed my exam, and have been working in the central control room ever since. And, I still love it! Naturally, I’ve continued to learn, regularly completing new trainings and attending courses – because professional development is a must. I’ve spent almost half a century with this company, full of learning and gaining experience. When I changed jobs, there were always new challenges, both professional and personal. As an operator, I have a lot of responsibilities, which suits me perfectly. And, I get on well with my colleagues.
Why is it good to work at Duna-Dráva Cement Kft., what do you like about it?
This is a reliable and predictable company. The continuous technological development encourages workers to gain more and better knowledge. My personal reasons include the fact that my parents and grandparents used to work here too.
Over the decades, we have formed a great community with our colleagues. During the 46 years I have spent here, I have always felt the company needed me (and the other way round as well). We trust each other, and that is a good feeling. Employees are appreciated here, both financially and humanly.
Duna-Dráva Cement Kft. is a stable company with a long history. There are challenges and interesting tasks. At the same time, people here are like a big family. I enjoy working here because of these challenges and varied duties of my job. It is also important for me that my bosses encouraged and supported my university studies, and that my colleagues are open towards new ideas.
Mr. Lenhardt, from an HR perspective, what would you recommend to those who are just joining the company?
My advice: be committed and loyal in your work.
(The interview was conducted in February 2017.)