On October 1, 2016, Karlheinz Evertz took over responsibility for manufacturing and logistics at Commercial Specialty Tires (CST). The mechanical engineer had previously lead the Passenger and Light Truck Tires (PLT) Original Equipment business unit for more than eight years. After a year in the job, it’s time for the 58-year-old to take stock. Evertz explains why he moved from passenger tires to specialty tires and what working at CST means to him.
1. Something new!
"The biggest difference between PLT and CST is in the variety of products. Passenger tires are, after all, very similar. At CST, the situation is completely different: from the smallest solid rubber tires with a diameter of a few centimeters to the large OTR (off-the-road) tires with several meters in diameter, it covers everything. This was something entirely new for me, making the business both exciting and challenging at the same time.”
2. Manufacturing excellence
“In my time at Continental, the manufacturing sector has definitely been my favorite. Among all the areas within a business, working together with the plants is probably my greatest passion and strength. That’s also where I have my longest experience and my network. At CST we are re-entering the agricultural tire business as well as launching a new portfolio of tires for the port segment. These two examples alone show the importance of a close collaboration with manufacturing.”
3. New direction and expansion
“I’m currently establishing a long-term strategy for our plants and logistics, defining cornerstones for the coming years and creating the, so to say, bigger picture for manufacturing of specialty tires. Likewise, Enno Straten, head of Commercial Specialty Tires, and the team have developed an ambitious strategy for CST leading up to 2025. Together, we’re all working out how we can grow the business and where we need to expand.”
4. Excellent team
“One clear benefit, as I see it, is our manageably-sized team of around 200 colleagues. Colleagues’ desks are located near each other, we work together closely, and everyone knows everyone. For example, the head of R&D is next door to me while the developers and my direct team are sitting close together in the same building. Where else do you find that?”
5. Work is enjoyable!
“For all the growth plans and strategies, it’s the enjoyment I get from working at CST that really stands out. As far as I’m concerned, the job has to be enjoyable, and it is. I could see myself working here in this atmosphere for the next ten years!”