Meet our experts: Martin Schmatz // 1 year as member of the Executive Board

Since July 2022, Martin Schmatz has been a member of the Executive Board of Delvag Versicherungs-AG and a member of the management of Albatros Versicherungsdienste GmbH. In this interview, he takes a look back at his first year as a member of the Executive Board, talks about his goals and the cultural change in the Delvag Group.


Interview / 23.08.2023

Martin Schmatz

Martin, how did you experience your first year as a board member?
My first year as a board member was very dynamic. More dynamic than I had imagined - even though I already knew the topics, the company and the people involved. We had two board changes this year and, together with the entire team, we are dealing with many complex issues.

Have you faced many challenges so far and what did they look like?
Absolutely. Our organisation is undergoing change, which is a constant and big challenge. Our environment is changing, technologies are changing... Setting the right course for a successful future of Delvag is certainly a holistic and permanent challenge.

Are those the goals you set for yourself? Or are there other topics you would like to tackle?
My first goal was to prioritise the various issues in our company. In my opinion, it is important to focus on a few topics at a time and then complete them. 

Another goal is the future-proof design of our IT systems. We have already achieved a lot of progress in this area by building a separate application for the broker and employee business and separating it from the technical connection landscape.

In addition, personnel development and leadership culture are particularly important to me. We continued to work on these two topics at our management offsite in June. During a follow-up session in late summer, we will update our leadership mission statement and adapt the new leadership culture.

A few months ago, your management trio reformed again - Tobias Winkler succeeded Lorenz Hanelt. What do you now want to work on together with Martin Gary and what are your specific plans for this trio?
The chemistry between the three of us is very good. Hopefullyour colleagues also notice that we are moving in the same direction. After we reformed as a trio, we had another intensive discussion about how we want to work together and how we will lead the company into the future. Furthermore, we would like to strengthen sales in particular and further expand Delvag's attractiveness for our customers and employees.

How do you want to approach your goals?
We are increasingly trying to divide up important decisions. It's not about saving work, but about achieving a higher speed in the implementation of our projects and measures. With several coordination loops for every decision, you unfortunately lose a lot of time. A clear assignment of responsibilities therefore helps a lot. Of course, it also requires the trust to let the other person decide, even if you would have done it a little differently yourself.

Have you already initiated a cultural change?
Yes, you can see that in the internal "Duz" culture - a sign that we have consciously set. Of course, it's not entirely new. Many colleagues were already on first-name terms with each other anyway. But reinforcing and promoting it now is part of our cultural change. We want an open corporate culture and greater participation of all employees in our various exchange formats.

What did you like the most in your first year as a board member?
There is no single thing that stands out here. I enjoy the work as a whole. I particularly enjoy working with people who are passionate about their work - and we have plenty of them in Delvag Group.

What have you learned so far during your time within the Board?
To be patient. Despite the focus, sometimes things don't happen as quickly as I might have originally wished. But there are usually good reasons for that. That's why you have to exercise a little patience.

What are you looking forward to in the future?
I'm looking forward to working with my colleagues. We have a great team across all three companies of Delvag Group that is passionate and motivated. I look forward to experiencing that every day!

Thank you very much for the interview.

From Inga Stöver
Corporate Communications Delvag