Detecon Alumni today
#WhatHappenedTo Tim Dörflinger?
From when to when did you work at Detecon? What was your position?
I moved from the research and development unit of Deutsche Telekom, Telekom Laboratories in Berlin, to Detecon in July 2010 and remained a part of the team until December 2015. I started as Consultant in the Strategy Practice with a focus on product innovation, then moved as Senior Consultant to the wholesale and regulation team of the International Telco Cluster in 2012. From 2012 until I left Detecon at the end of 2015, I was involved exclusively in projects abroad and also lived in Johannesburg/South Africa during this time, where I was a member of the local team in the Office for Central and Southern Africa (CASA). I was Managing Consultant when I left Detecon and subsequently worked in consulting as senior manager at Accenture Strategy for 2.5 years before taking on my current position at DHL.
What were the most exciting Detecon moments for you?
I really find it difficult to answer this question because almost all my projects were exciting and unusual. Here are my Top 3:
1. Market deregulation in Myanmar: I was project manager with a team of 13 consultants for about 6 months in Yangon, during which period we advised a japanese investment company that wanted to conclude a joint venture agreement with Myanmar’s state telephone company to develop the Burmese market after the regulatory authorities issued additional licenses for mobile services providers, thereby opening the market.
2. Study on broadband expansion in 25 African countries: Working on a team of 8 consultants working over a period of 6 months, we prepared an analysis for the African Union that was used to apply for funding for the expansion of a pan-African broadband network using optical fiber. In the course of the project, we visited all 25 countries to conduct interviews with the regulatory authorities, the ministries for ICT, and representatives of the telco operators. This took me to countries that I would presumably never have visited otherwise professionally: Nigeria, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Senegal, Mozambique, Angola, Sao Tomé e Principe.
3. Restructuring of a telco operator in Angola: For a total of 15 months, I was part of a 30-member team of consultants in Luanda, Angola, and supported the product development department during a project for the restructuring of the client. We developed new broadband products, created rate plans for them, launched the products in cooperation with the marketing team, and analyzed sales performance.
As a general statement, I must say that I learned an incredible amount at Detecon, and every project was unique in its own way. During 5.5 years at Detecon, I never worked on the same topic twice.
What company do you work for today? What is your primary field of work there?
I have been working at DHL Supply Chain in Bonn since July 2018, where, as Senior Account Director, I am responsible for strategy development, account management, and global innovation programs for 2 of our Top 50 global customers with whom we as DPDHL Group generate a total of about €200 million in revenues. One is a global telco player, the other a global retail champion. At DHL, we operate more than 50 warehouse locations in 15 countries worldwide for these two customers and take care of warehousing, managed transport, and value-added services. To be a little more specific: We provide, for instance, the logistics for the complete expansion of mobile services of our customer in India and store and transport radio antennas, satellite dishes, power generators, and cable drums of optical fiber right to the deployment site. The configuration and shipping of cellphones and tablets are also part of our service portfolio. I still travel a lot, but I do significantly less than during my time at Detecon. On average, I am abroad about one week every month. During the last 12 months, I have had business trips on behalf of DHL to India, South Africa, Italy, Denmark, the UK, and Spain. Between now and the end of the year, I have trips to the USA, Brazil, Mexico, and Japan on my schedule.
What did you value especially highly while at Detecon, and what do you miss from the “old days”?
The international spirit, the genuinely unique projects, and the collaboration with the colleagues were great. Sometimes I miss the diversity of topics and the challenge of being able to learn about a completely new topic every three to six months.
What three hashtags would you use to describe Detecon?
Thank you very much for the interview, Tim!