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Executive Feature

Forever Faster: How PUMA Beat the Competition for Best Places to Work

Posted by Amy Elisa Jackson

December 10, 2019

Competition pushes us to be better, move faster, become stronger. Sure, we set goals, but the thrill of beating the opposition is what gets us through the late nights and hard work. Perhaps no company knows this better than PUMA.

With a motto of “Forever Faster,” the German-based sportswear company is outrunning the competition on the field of company culture. PUMA won Glassdoor’s Employees’ Choice Award for the Best Place to Work in Germany, with a 4.3 company rating according to employee reviews. As one of the top 25 Best Places to Work in Germany, PUMA boasts a team spirit and performance-driven innovation that defines their work culture. Employees rave about the speed & spirit ethos alongside the growth opportunities and personal development with various training programs. From parent-child offices, flexible hours, and onsite state-of-the-art gym and basketball courts, there’s no shortage of action at PUMA.

Bjørn Gulden CEO of PUMAOn the eve of the announcement, we spoke with PUMA CEO Bjørn Gulden about their Best Places to Work win and what the company looks for in future team members. Lace up your sneakers and polish your resume, PUMA is hiring now.

Glassdoor: Congratulations on your good performance in Best Places to Work, Germany. What is behind the win?

Bjørn Gulden: We have continued to build on the strong foundation of PUMA’s company culture that was established by our founder Rudolf Dassler. Since then, it has been PUMA’s mission to create the fastest products for the fastest athletes and this attitude has definitely also impacted the way we work at PUMA. PUMA’s company culture is driven by fast decision making, creativity, ownership and a very flexible working structure.

In addition, we have introduced extensive programs to further develop our employees. These include on-the job development, International Leadership Programs and job swaps. I’m very proud to say that most of the promotions at PUMA are filled from our internal talent pool.

As a Sports company, we, of course, offer a large set of sports and workout opportunities like free gym, sports classes and our different outdoor courts for football, volleyball and basketball.

Glassdoor: Those are amazing perks. What makes the culture unique for employees?

Bjørn Gulden: Our culture is performance-driven and you need to enjoy striving to achieve your goals, taking ownership and having the freedom to create the future for the company. We are team players and like to work in teams, so we truly believe that we create the best results when we work together. We believe in the talent of each employee and we also believe in the power of diversity. At our headquarters in Herzogenaurach, we have employees from more than 60 nationalities and I am very proud of our diverse and equal work environment.

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Glassdoor: What types of roles and job profiles are you looking for the most?

Bjørn Gulden: When we recruit people, we want to find the right ones that fit into our company culture. We want people to behave the way they are and use their individual personalities. We want our employees to be open, honest and hungry for being part of a successful PUMA. And of course, with having a very diverse and international employee base, foreign language skills are indispensable.

Glassdoor:  Which skills are becoming more important when candidates are applying to PUMA?

Bjørn Gulden: Obviously, the candidates need to have the right expertise and technical skills, but the right mindset is equally important. People at PUMA need to be team-oriented, flexible, risk-taking, agile and socially intelligent. People with high social intelligence and people who like to work in global networks will win in our industry. Also, the companies of the future, in general, are not about hierarchies, but about matrixes and networks.

Glassdoor: Lastly, what trends do you find most important in employee development?

Bjørn Gulden: I believe that a career looks very different today than to what it was 15 years ago. It has become a much more personal journey, driven by the employees themselves and our job is to help develop them in the right direction.

 

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