Week 3 - Bain Week

August 5, 2020

Bain Week - 5.08.2020

All our ‘The Mission’ projects tackle different topics in various industries and are accompanied by different corporate partners. However, as one of the initiators of ‘The Mission’, Bain & Company has been involved in all projects so far and continues to support our teams with their workshops, training, and general input.

For each project, two consultants from Bain move in with our teams in TechQuartier and support them on a daily basis. For ‘The Mission III: SPORTS – Be Sustainable’, we have super energetic and passionate Bainies Annabell Hillenbrand and Kim Strauss on our side! They share their methods and approaches that they usually use in their own projects, give the teams continuous feedback and make sure the teams are moving on the right path.

Annabell Hillenbrand Kim Strauss Bain Futury Sports Be Sustainable FC Bayern

We sat down with Annabell and Kim to talk about their careers at Bain & Company, their involvement in ‘The Mission III’ and the work with the teams.

To start off, could you tell us a few words about your personal and professional background?  

Annabell: Coming from a background in science, I joined our Bain office in Dusseldorf 7 years ago. Since then, I have had the chance to work on projects across many industries and with Bainies from different geographies. I love to immerse myself and explore new things – landscapes, cultures, people, and different fields of expertise. To me, life is like a giant treasure chest: There are so many fascinating things to discover if you only take the time to dig deep.

Kim: Sure. Personally, I enjoy trying out new things, which I express by practicing different types of sports and showing a strong interest in broadening my horizon with respect to international culinary experiences. I love to spend time with my family and friends and getting to know new people. After graduating in European Management in 2019 and gathering experience in the automotive industry, I joined Bain & Company and was since working predominantly in financial services. Being originated in the southwestern area of Germany, I basically have a resource-saving mindset implemented in my DNA. This could be the reason why I am really happy to be part of 'The Mission' and to participate in shaping a more sustainable future.

#SportsBeSustainable must be a quite extraordinary project for you. How did you feel when you found out you are going to join 'The Mission'?

Annabell: The topic of sustainability is very close to my heart, and I have been following the first two rounds of 'The Mission' on 'WASTE – Be Circular' and 'BANKING – Be Green.' When I got the call from HR that I would be part of The Mission 3, I was super excited! Sharing methods and approaches that we use in our daily project work is a great way to support the young entrepreneurs on their journey to solve pressing problems in the field of sports.

Kim: I was extremely excited when I got the notice that I can be part of the Bain team on the ground to support the teams of 'The Mission'. It is just an amazing opportunity to really have an impact on a more sustainability-oriented future and on rethinking our way of living.


What challenges do you expect in the next three months?

Annabell: Three months is a short amount of time. Especially at the beginning, it might feel overwhelming to the teams to identify the right user problem, develop a high impact solution, and build a team with people that barely know each other – all at the same time. On top, the teams will receive a lot of inputs, ideas and opinions from different stakeholders. I recommend them to be flexible and embrace change but also to stay true to their inner compass on the journey to a more sustainable future.  

Kim: There are all kinds of challenges one can think of, and it is very difficult to anticipate them in advance. Yet, generally speaking, we are working on a considerably short time frame to support the teams in coming up with truly impactful and innovative ideas to transform the Allianz Arena into the Sustainability Arena of the future. Hence, we need to stay focused and leverage for example the support from the corporate partners and the expertise within Bain to make things happen faster than they normally would.


What part of your job do you enjoy the most?

Annabell: Continuous learning! Working in a project-mode gives me the room to explore new fields and to work with a diverse crowd of colleagues and clients. Equally important to me is the atmosphere of trust we have among the Bainies as well as frequent and honest feedback. This creates an environment where I cannot only learn a lot but also grow as a person.

Kim: The best about working at Bain is that we have an amazing culture of motivated and open-minded colleagues who will support you with every challenge you are facing. It is an environment where you can be yourself and build deep and long-lasting friendships. But this culture also means sticking to our company values and being "TrueNorth" as we call it. And you can see that part of these values is that we really care about our impact on society and the environment. This is why I am very happy that I was given the opportunity to be part of 'The Mission' as part of the Bain team on the ground.


What’s the main advice you would give our innovation teams?

Annabell: Be open-minded and take on stretch experiences over the next three months. You are part of a unique program with so many learning opportunities – be it tackling highly complex problems, building functional teams that work well under pressure, or interacting with different stakeholders such as corporate partners. Take on the challenge!

Kim: I would advise them to enjoy their time together and to make the most out of this extraordinary opportunity. They can try out new things and gain experience in a specific area whilst being embedded in a truly supportive environment. Hence, they should use the three months of the project to gather as much information as possible and to build their network to have a great starting point also for the time after 'The Mission'.

Thank you, Annabell and Kim, for your time and the extraordinary support you provide our teams!

We will continue introducing you to our partners and give you insights into our projects. Stay tuned for more 😉




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