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The world of PURCHASING

It was a great pleasure for the MBA program director Prof. Harald Strotmann to welcome back Sunil George on campus for a lecture in the well-established Guest in Classroom series. Sunil flew in from Brussels that day where he works as a Manager for Indirect Purchasing at Toyota Motor Europe.
Having been on the other side of the table not too long ago –Sunil graduated from the MBA in 2012 –he shared his career path with the current students and also talked about the setbacks when he was trying to get into the one car manufacturing company that he had in mind right from the start. Having had a background in the automotive industry before starting the MBA in Pforzheim Sunil knew that he wanted to stay in the industry but grow there. After one of the Almuni Meet Current Students events in the MBA he got his chance though and did an internship in the German automotive industry that proofed to be a door opener to his current job at Toyota.
Being a manager for purchasing at Toyota Sunil introduced the students to the world of purchasing in a very interactive way. He asked them e.g. about their opinion on the role of purchasing in a company and made them familiar with Toyota´s philosophy of purchasing such as “Mutual benefit based on mutual trust” between the suppliers and the manufacturer.
By showing a short video on the Toyota e-Palette concept vehicle, designed to meet the demands of future multi-mode transport and business applications Sunil gave the MBA students an idea of the mobility challenges that all the car manufacturers will have to face within the next decades.
In the second part of his talk Sunil also covered the possibilities for MBA graduates to work for Toyota. He informed the students how it is to work for a Japanese company and that the company is looking for two mindsets in its future employees: continuous improvement and respect for other people - these being the two pillars of the Toyota way.
Sunil highlighted that the intercultural exchange and the work in international groups within the MBA was a key competence that he took away from the program. To be able to successfully interact with colleagues from all parts of the world now helps him immensely in his day-to-day work at Toyota.
Throughout the talk Sunil was happy to answer the students´ many questions.
Thanks Sunil, for being our Guest in Classroom! 

photos: Shvetang Pai Angle, Class of 2021

text: MBA