I was recently promoted to Team Leader of the Hauzer Competence Centre, which includes the laboratory I previously led. I started at Hauzer more than 30 years ago as a laboratory technician, and I still do – and enjoy! – that practical work.
In an established team, leadership tasks don’t take up a full day. Maintaining team spirit is very important to me. During difficult times, that’s when you need to invest in supporting your team; it builds an even better basis for mutual trust. A good team makes it worth it to come to work. I’ve learned that the most important thing for success is communication. We document all communications and requests in our central information system, so everyone can easily look up what has been asked and done. Some things just aren’t immediately obvious, such as which areas of a sample need to be coated, so it’s important to clarify. What’s great about Hauzer is the ‘just do it’ mentality. If someone has a request, let’s try to make it work! The most surprising request in my time at Hauzer was a request for coating industrial knitting needles. I never thought it would result in them buying a machine, but they did! That always stayed with me. You never know how things will turn out.
Hauzer Competence Center
The Competence Centre in Venlo is part of – and collaborates closely with – the Process Engineering division. As Wim says: “They develop the processes; we look at the results.” The Competence Centre is where Hauzer develops new technologies and coatings, often together with our customers. This is also where sampling for customers is done.
The Competence Centre includes a state-of- the-art laboratory for quality control, which is crucial for development and sampling activities. Here, it is shown whether the coating complies with the requested specifications. One of the highlights of the Competence Centre and lab is the scanning electron microscope, which allows them to judge the surface before and after coating, and after application testing. “This is all important information for improving the performance of our coatings,” says Wim.