05.11.2020, Luxembourg/Germany, RTL Group
Backstage opened the doors of the RTL Virtual Café for the first time on 1 October. More than 30 of you popped into the RTL Virtual Café to meet other colleagues and executives over a heart-warming cup of coffee. With this initiative we also gave Backstage readers a chance to meet 11 executives from the Group, who kindly agreed to participate.
With the RTL Virtual Café, Backstage aimed to facilitate exchange across countries, functions and hierarchies across RTL Group. And it achieved even more – connecting people from different countries and positions, enabling you to share experience, learn from each other, and also inspiring you to start similar initiatives at local level!
Elmar Heggen and Björn Bauer enjoying their virtual coffee meetings
From Fremantle, Samantha Glynne, SVP Global Branded Entertainment, comments on her own coffee date with Julia Bol from RTL Nederland: “It was so inspiring talking to someone from a different part of the RTL business. We shared the pains and the gains of working during a pandemic, both coming from different perspectives but having similar issues. I very much hope to have a coffee with Julia in real life one of these days – we both agreed RTL had made an excellent match!”
Marlies de Boer, Head of Strategy at RTL Nederland, and Sandrine Gobbesso, General Manager of TV at RTL Belgium, also enjoyed the experience. Marlies said: “Definitely something I would recommend doing more often as a Group! It inspired our young RTL Nederland team, so we might also do this at a local level.” Sandrine recalls: “The 30 minutes I spent with Marine were rich and frank. Unsurprisingly, we are dealing with a lot of the same issues and it was very interesting to hear her point of view and exchange specific information. There is no doubt that this exchange created a bond that I hope we will maintain. I would like to thank Orélie, from our Communications team, and RTL Group for making this possible.”
At Smartclip, both co-CEOs Oliver Vesper and Thomas Servatius also took part in the initiative. Thomas Servatius says: “The virtual coffee date was a very positive experience for me, both on a personal and professional level. We both connected over a cup of coffee and had the chance to discuss new ways of working together – we even discovered that this conversation may lead to a close collaboration between Smartclip and Divimove!”
A big thank you to all the colleagues and executives who took part and made the RTL Virtual Café possible! The doors of the Café are now closed, but given the positive feedback and success of this initiative, we will open them up again in future. In these unprecedented times, maintaining and creating social connections is probably more crucial than ever before. RTL Group has more than 16,000 employees who work in very different settings, places and businesses or, conversely, in very similar positions. By giving you the opportunity to chat and meet the people behind the numbers, we also want to encourage tighter bonds and closer collaboration within the Group.