In mid-2021, the Environmental Department at A1 Austria reorganized itself with Valentin Mayr as Environmental Manager and introduced the Sounding Board with the aim of creating a transparent, diverse and cross-departmental exchange on environmental topics. After one year, we evaluated the initiative and ask Pia Eggenhofer, who answered the internal call for a fresh perspective from Generation Greta. In the interview, she tells us why she jumped at the opportunity to be part of the sustainable change at A1, how sustainability and learning go together, and how she envisions the future.
You’ve been part of A1’s People&Change team since January 2021, focusing on Learning & Development. What does your typical day look like?
I start with a morning meeting with my team and a big cup of coffee. :-) A big part of my job is our digital learning platform, helping colleagues create learning content for internal training and developing new ideas for learning formats.
What do you like about your job?
What I value most is the collaboration in my team and the trust that I feel, even as a young person, to develop myself, to try out new things, even if mistakes happen in the process. It satisfies me that I have the opportunity to bring joy and success in learning to the A1 team.
What does sustainability mean to you?
For me, sustainability means respecting my environment, including my fellow human beings, taking care of them and standing up for them.
»Sustainability encompasses more than just environmental issues, it also takes place in the social sphere – key words diversity, equal opportunities and respect.«
A key experience for me was, when my best friend decided to go vegan and made a huge change in her lifestyle. That opened my eyes and showed me that sustainability and change start first and foremost with ourselves.
Why did you want to be a part of the E-SG Sounding Board?
I think it’s great that A1 has been involved with sustainability for many years and that this initiative allows us to capture the voices and ideas within the company. So I see this as a great way to be able to deal with such important issues not only in my private life, but also in my working hours.
What is the concept of the E-SG Sounding Board?
Representatives from various departments discuss a defined topic in the sessions, sometimes with guest contributions. The topics are very diverse, from strategy to processes to product packaging. Even though I see myself more in the role of a listener, because I cannot influence operational chains, I perceive my participation as a great opportunity, inspiration and motivation. I share the knowledge I learn with my colleagues and apply it in my daily work.
You initiated and helped implement an ESG learning path. What was your motivation?
It is personally important to me to continuously develop myself in many aspects of sustainability and diversity and to deal sensitively with the topics. Inspired by the Sounding Board, I realized in the course of my research that we don’t have any central learning content and I wanted to change that. With this learning path, we outline that often small steps can change a lot and that we need to work together to make this world more sustainable, step by step.
A1 Austria CFO Sonja Wallner with Dominik Plametzberger and Pia Eggenhofer, representing the generation „Greta“ at the E-SG Sounding Board
»The responsibility lies with each and every one of us, and everyone should be aware of that.«
How do you envision a better tomorrow at A1?
As a company, we have already achieved a lot and have already set ourselves considerable goals. I would particularly like to see more women taking on jobs in STEM fields and a diverse corporate culture across all areas. I think that by being aware of our impact as a company and working very hard to pursue a sustainable future, our tomorrow will be better than our today.
Fotocredits: A1 / APA Fotoservice: Daniel Hinterramskogler, Krisztian Juhasz