Christian Haldorn, Head of the Real Estate Management Group
I love the idea of working at an institution whose primary purpose is education.
How did you come to the University of Kassel?
I am a fully qualified lawyer and worked for Deutsche Bahn until 2019. There, I worked in various positions in the real estate sector and was responsible as a manager for up to 20 employees. Three years ago, I came to the University of Kassel and the reasons were actually very idealistic. I like the idea of working in an institution whose primary purpose is education. Especially today, this is an important social task in which I can participate with my work. I think that's great!
Is there a first conclusion you can draw from these first three years?
In the three years, I have noticed increasingly and very positively that at the University of Kassel, you are also supported from a higher position if you have a good idea. I am allowed to question things and leave the beaten track, even in a public institution. The decision-making processes required for this are relatively short.
What is the task of your work group?
My department consists of various sub-teams, which are made up differently depending on the projects currently being worked on. Depending on the phase, we work more in the office or can be found on the respective construction site. The project-based work also means that our office space is always being reoccupied, so it's a very lively place to work.
And where can you find the construction sites at the University of Kassel?
Our construction sites at the University of Kassel are, on the one hand, the new building projects for highly specialized special use. These are mainly laboratories, but also modern learning spaces, whose design and development we always have in mind to improve the study conditions at the University of Kassel.
But even if all the new buildings were built, there would never be a dull moment. When we have completed a new building project, figuratively speaking, we start all over again. That's because the existing buildings are also constantly being checked and optimized.
With whom does your department increasingly collaborate?
Clearly, we have to cooperate with the relevant approval authorities to carry out our projects. These include, for example, the Ministry of Science, the building inspectorate and the environmental authorities, who want to see certain requirements met. But the legal regulations for buildings also change regularly, so we are in constant dialog. We also work with external planning offices, i.e. architects, with whom we visualize and realize our projects. Internally, of course, departments such as Finance and Human Resources are in contact with us. But the departments are very important: they are our customers and they articulate their needs for modern teaching and research.
What do (future) employees need in your team to be able to work well? It is of course the professional competencies, but in an agile work environment it is also the ability to work in a team and flexibility. And it's also the ability and willingness to get involved in the existing structures of the public service and to be empathetic. If you want to bring about very big changes in a very short period of time, you will find it difficult to get into the structures of a university.
What do you appreciate about the University of Kassel as an employer?
Personally, I see great advantages in the flexitime i.e. the flexibility in terms of time. The food in the cafeteria is very good and it is a very different, very young crowd compared to a large corporation like Deutsche Bahn. The campus is a small cosmos in itself, which also keeps me quite young.
The work at the University of Kassel is ...