COVID In (Virtual) Germany


Over the course of the semester, our team has encountered and educated ourselves about challenges and obstacles that the COVID-19 pandemic has presented both us and the client at Possehl Online Solutions. During our midterm check-in meeting with the client, our team wanted to grasp a better understanding of how the pandemic has impacted business in Germany and around the globe for their firm. With little surprise, the client mentioned that their offices have been forced to place a great emphasis on virtual meetings, signing digital contracts, and conducting business without ever coming face to face with a customer. As this was a shock to Possehl as well as the whole world, it can be said that Possehl is in a prime position to benefit immensely from the COVID-19 pandemic as many business have no other choice but to build out a digital platform in order to survive.

After speaking with Mr. Wachter and Mr. Landherr, our team was quick to realize that many of the same life changes the United States has become accustom to are also seen in Germany and many other countries around the globe. While the United States is having trouble keeping the pandemic levels low, other countries including Germany are also experiencing similar outbreaks and spikes in COVID-19 even after a year of the pandemic coming into play.

While it is unfortunate to ponder that companies have benefited greatly from the COVID-19 pandemic, Possehl is destined for greater success especially in their wheelhouse of the manufacturing industry. As we learned, the manufacturing industry in Germany and other European countries has lagged behind the age of digitalization and Possehl is here to capitalize and help their clients into the technology sector. Possehl is in business to help clients transform their outdated business practices; these often include in person sales, meetings, and contracts to be signed. With the implementation of online marketplaces, brand shops, and digital marketing efforts to name a few of their services, Possehl is in business to revolutionize the manufacturing sector in Germany and across the European Union. At the end of the day, COVID-19 has opened up new and exciting opportunities for both our team and Possehl Online Solutions to capitalize on. As a business that thrives from companies looking to become established online, Possehl is in a prime position to be able to advance during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

While working with our clients and contacts over at Possehl Online solutions over the course of the semester, there are definitely pros and cons to this project operating in a fully virtual setting. What has made this project easier is the ability to meet whenever we want with our teammates, virtually. If a question pops up when we are working on our deliverables, we can shoot a text and hop on a Zoom in for a few minutes as a team; if we were working on this project a few years ago, that would have not been likely to observe. As for communicating with our clients and contacts, communication has been streamlined and easy via email, LinkedIn, and Zoom over the course of the semester.

As I can speak for the team and say that we would have all loved to travel to Germany this year, we are definitely satisfied and pleased with the way in which communication was established and conducted. At the end of the day, if we as a team were able to operate in an in person setting that we could have been either more productive or more creative during brainstorming and work sessions. While we found success virtually, we may have missed out on opportunities that we would have discovered as a team in person. Our team additionally encountered language barriers when originally starting out our deliverables and research. If we were in person or able to have direct contact with our clients, we could have caught this error sooner and we would have been able to work on the correct deliverable earlier on. While this was not the biggest problem in the world or that we could have come across, this was definitely a result of being trapped in a virtual setting this semester.

All in all, I was still able to learn a lot and communicate effectively in the virtual setting this semester but I most definitely would have preferred to be in person for our project reports and meetings as a team. I am really happy to have been able to work on this project regardless of being in a fully virtual setting. I am excited to present our research and observations in a few weeks to our clients at Possehl Online Solutions. We have worked extremely hard and dedicated significant time to this project and our team is excited to see how Possehl implements our suggestions in their overall business plans.