Woman of The Month

February 2023

In this column we would like to present special characters and personalities in the international environment of EDE International on a monthly basis. Enjoy reading!

Five Questions to Dorota Cziber:

Dorota Cziber is 43 years young, works and lives in Wroclaw with her husband, teenage son and a Jack Russell. She has been the passionate managing director of the Polish subsidiary Ditzinger Sp. z o.o. for around 18 years now and has since built the company from a small two-person operation into a successful enterprise with 14 employees. As a Polish company with a German parent company and membership in E/D/E, she has many interesting things to say about international cooperation. Dorota Cziber speaks perfect German in addition to her Polish mother tongue.

EDE International: “Dear Dorota, please introduce yourself briefly to our readers. What do you like to do most in your free time when you are not working for Ditzinger as Managing Director?”

Dorota: “I don’t have much time for hobbies, but I love spending time with people. Of course, especially with my husband, my 14-year-old son and of course our dog – he’s practically our second child (laughs). On top of that, we have a huge family with whom we meet as often as possible and – as is so common in Poland – discuss things loudly and spiritedly. I also often play ‘mummy taxi’ for my son, who has been swimming competitively for many years. So I’m always on the go a lot and around people. I like that.”

EDE International: “Please tell us something about your professional career. How did you get involved with Ditzinger in Poland? What was special about it?”

Dorota: “After my studies in economics, I was asked by Ditzinger if I would like to take over the Polish branch. That was about 18 years ago, back then we started with two employees in Polkowice and built up the business from scratch. Today I am very grateful for this great experience. We did everything ourselves with our growing team. I can really claim to know almost all the processes of my business because I’ve done all kinds of tasks myself, whether it’s printing out a delivery note, preparing an annual balance sheet or training new employees. That is a big advantage. This joint development with the staff has welded us together. Clearly, the most important thing we have at Ditzinger Poland is our team! We have known and appreciated each other for many years. We know what makes each other tick, what keeps them busy.

Our head office (Ditzinger Germany) has always supported us from the very beginning, and we have been given a lot of confidence to build up the business in Poland – in our own ‘Polish way’. At the beginning it was a kind of ‘culture clash’ (winks with one eye). But we quickly agreed with the management in Germany that we could do it ‘our way’ for a year and then we’d see. That worked well. The head office’s leap of faith has proven its worth and today we are still allowed to act as independently as possible.”

EDE International: “What do you think distinguishes this Polish mentality and culture? What is the special strength of you as a company in Poland?”

Dorota: “Clearly one of our strengths: Polish culture is very open. We are relaxed in our dealings with business partners and place a lot of value on friendly relationships and like to mix business and private. It’s easy for us to establish a personal relationship with our customers very quickly! We usually know each other very well, we know the private situation of the people and, in addition to business, we often talk about private things. That creates closeness and trust. We Poles are sometimes too quick in our thinking and decisions. Personally, I have a lot of respect for the fact that my German colleagues think for a long time and discuss things calmly, without the emotionality that is characteristic of us Polish people.”

EDE International: “How do you feel about the cooperation with EDE? With the people? What helps you in the cooperation and what can we do better?”

Dorota: “Two words come to mind: Dialogue and partnership! Our cooperation is characterised by mutual trust. One of the reasons for this is definitely that we have been working with the same people in E/D/E since the beginning about 16 years ago. We know each other very well and due to the long cooperation, we have many nice experiences together, which we often talk about and also laugh about. 

We would certainly not be as successful today without the cooperation with EDE. We are a small company – without the great support from the warehouse, the logistics, the catalogues – and other services of E/D/E, we would not have developed so quickly. The professionally organised trade fairs, the personal visits of the staff on site and also the virtual meetings help us to progress. And although E/D/E has a group-like structure, we have always found enough flexibility when we needed an exception. And something else is important for us: despite the internationality, the Polish culture and mentality are always taken into account. I like that.”

EDE International: “What else would you like to see from E/D/E in the future?”

Dorota: “That we keep on moving towards digitalisation, develop new things together and adapt to the ‘new’ world. And that we continue to have the super partnership as before and our ‘special wishes’ continue to be fulfilled!”

Thank you very much for the interview, Dorota!

About “Ditzinger “:

Ditzinger Sp. Z o.o. was founded in 2004 and is a 100% subsidiary of the Ditzinger Group in Braunschweig, Germany and today supplies industry and trade with products from renowned manufacturers in the fields of hand tools, rolling bearings and drive technology, industrial plant equipment, power tools, lubrication systems, industrial machinery and equipment, factory equipment, work protection and much more. Professionalism and efficiency in meeting customer requirements are top priorities. Ditzinger Sp. z o.o. has been a member of the E/D/E Group for more than 16 years. More info: https://ditzinger.pl.

The interview was given in February to Mayte Jakstait.

Man of The Month

January 2023

In this column we would like to present special characters and personalities in the international environment of EDE International on a monthly basis. Enjoy reading!

Five Questions to Rik Lecot:

Rik Lecot is 62 years young, married and has two sons. He started his professional career in 1983. Since 2000, he has been Co-Managing Director at our member company LECOT in Belgium and has since then been an active and valued contact person in all E/D/E matters.

EDE International: “Dear Rik, what do you like to do in your spare time when you are not working?”

Rik: “Lecot is of course my biggest hobby. Otherwise, I like to go to football in the region where I live, the club from Kortrijk. We are also a sponsor there and I am there regularly every fortnight. Another hobby is food, too. As you can see (strokes his belly and laughs). Especially Belgian cuisine with very nice fish.”

EDE International: “You have been working with the EDE since you started at Lecot – more than 22 years now. Do you have a personal highlight? What do you particularly appreciate about working with the team at EDE?”

Rik: “The feeling that you are not a “number” at EDE! I have known EDE and the people, including the owner family, for a very long time. There are strong personal relationships. Mutual visits are always full of appreciation. We always reflect about things together: What else can we do? I must say that the joint development of Lecot and EDE is very positive. – Especially the topic of internationalisation. These two success stories should continue. “

EDE International: “Are there also cultural differences in our cooperation?

Rik: “Of course. EDE has developed a lot and has become more and more international. Nevertheless, there is still the German culture. That is also a good thing. I am European through and through. I worked in Germany before Lecot and know both the language and the mentality (editor’s note: Rik speaks 5 languages fluently (!) and a little Spanish). This also helps especially to understand the complexity of the EDE.”

EDE International: “Is there something particularly valuable that one could learn from a Belgian company in an international environment?

Rik: “Belgium has always been a transit country. Characterised by multilingualism, different cultures and openness. We have many foreign manufacturers – perhaps more than in other countries. We see that as an advantage and look with an open mind: Which one is the best? That’s what we take. There is a saying in Belgium: Goods arrive in Rotterdam – and on the way to France or Holland, something always falls off for us.” (laughs)

EDE International: “Rik – do you have a final message for us?

Rik: (thinks for a moment and then): “Full speed ahead in internationalisation EDE!”

Thank you very much for the interview, Rik!

About “Lecot”:
Since its foundation in 1888 by Charles Lecot, the family business has grown from a small hardware shop in Heule and Maaseik, Belgium, to become the largest national supplier of general hardware, fasteners, building hardware, tools and industrial safety. Today, it is already in its fourth generation. As a family business, Lecot says it swears by long-term relationships and places the highest value on reliability and quality for its customers in Belgium and the Netherlands. Lecot has been a member of the E/D/E Group for more than 25 years.

The interview was given in December to Mayte Jakstait.

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