Goaltending, teamwork, and trust with EMEA’s Experience Maker of the Year, Klaus Fiedel
Klaus Fiedel admitted he was a bit surprised to win the 2021 Experience Maker of the Year award for EMEA, which recognizes an individual who uniquely delivers exceptional customer experiences and business impact.
As the Head of IT at the Investitionsbank Berlin (IBB), the development bank for the Federal State of Berlin, Klaus and his team oversaw the disbursement of emergency funds during the pandemic of 2020 to over 650,000 Berliners whose livelihoods were threatened.
“It was an honor to be part of the solution.”
- Klaus Fiedel, Head of IT, Investitionsbank Berlin
With less than a week to implement this project, Fiedel leveraged Adobe Experience Cloud to stand up a solution that was able to process up to 6,000 digital applications every hour with Adobe Experience Manager Forms.
Beyond the technology, a few key ingredients came together for this mission-critical initiative, as Fiedel explains in our interview below.
Motivated by the need to help Berliners
When asked what motivated his team to make the digital emergency aid application functional in less than a week, he explained that in lockdown during COVID-19, many Berliners were cut off from their sources of income, such as artists or self-employed individuals.
“Our aim was to help the people of Berlin to overcome this critical situation,” Fiedel said. “Everyone knows someone who needs this money. That was the target for the bank. If not in such a situation, when else should we help? It was motivation for the whole team to work day and night to solve these problems.”
It speaks volumes that Fiedel looks at this achievement through the lens of who it impacted. The team’s empathy and user-centricity at IBB was evident as the team worked through impossible circumstances to deliver for the people of Berlin.
A leadership style informed by goalkeeping
In his role, many hard decisions came down to Klaus’ judgement. When it comes to making decisive choices in critical situations, he credits his success to the way he communicates with stakeholders — the government, the bank, and his team.
“No hidden agendas,” he explains. He shared his philosophy that transparency and giving people a chance to solve problems on their own, leads to innovation and progress — not by giving directives.
Fiedel is also a football goalkeeper, which has shaped the type of leader he is today.
“As the goalkeeper, you always have problems before you. I try to fix them, and sometimes it works, sometimes they score a goal.”
Like in soccer, it’s often on Fiedel to determine how the game is played. He sets the strategy, coordinating each player to come together against a shared mission. To empower his players at IBB, Fiedel ensures the team operates on a foundation of trust.
“My team trusts each other. We know if things go wrong, we’ll learn together. We solve problems together. Our confidence and our trust in each other allow us to make high-stakes decisions and gives us the courage to try.”
Advice for all Experience Makers
For future Experience Makers of the Year, Fiedel reinforced the idea of diversity.
“Open your mind to different people. It’s an advantage. You get so many new ideas that help and many ways of finding solutions. It’s very important to see there is a world outside of you — other people also have good ideas. It’s the combination of these ideas that are the key success factor. If you have hard decisions to make, with confidence in the team, it’s possible to see through critical situations.”
This team stepped up during a time of immense change and challenge, delivering much needed aid to the people of Berlin through digital solutions. That’s teamwork they should be very proud of.
Investitionsbank Berlin was nominated by their solutions partner Eggs unimedia. Learn more about the Adobe Experience Maker Awards.