Our relationship with our customers, suppliers and colleagues represents our core values. We therefore act in keeping with the following. By the way, all photos that represent our values, are taken in our world garden. Learn more...
Our corporate business principles
Our company's success is based on living common values and pursuing common goals. Our corporate business principles anchor these ideas in a written form. They serve us as a guideline in our day-to-day contemplations, decision-making and actions. They are at any time binding for all employees of our company.
1. Values Maturation
We develop values
Our thoughts and actions are based on the "Values Maturation" model. This model stands for an orientation towards values (deliberately used in the plural which incorporates more than mere monetary values), for a family-run enterprise, for relational intelligence, for the reinvestment of profit in the company and thus in its future and, above all, for the balance of ecological, economic and social sustainability.
This is in contrast to the wide-spread "Greed" model characterized by a maximization of the (possible) future (monetary) enterprise value, by the extrapolation of the development of the past into the future, by the pretense of having knowledge of the future, by the withdrawal of earnings and by a take-the-money-and-run mentality.
Values Maturation means, for example, to achieve sustainable income, on the basis of which the enterprise can continue to innovate and grow successfully. This ensures the viability of the enterprise and conserves the resources for future generations.
We mind - always and everywhere
While the "Values Maturation" principle describes what we do, "Mindfulness" answers the question on how we follow and live values: mindfully. Thus, every change is also a challenge for development and one should take an active part in the never-ending process of technological and social transition. This implies that changes occurring in the corporate environment are actually recognized and identified in good time. That is why we at WITTENSTEIN mind - always and everywhere.
To be mindful means to pay attention and be alert, to endeavor to detect all phenomena. We perceive even faint signals, do not ignore them but give them space. For this reason, we set for ourselves as few restrictions or limits¬ as possible. Mindfulness is a mental attitude that shapes and permeates our lives¬. Only if we mind can we succeed in recognizing the opportunities we are offered as well as potential risks, and use or minimize either.
Mindfulness also means not to rest on our laurels when business thrives and not to be satisfied with what we have achieved, ¬but to be concerned and intent with the future. We therefore need to practice self-reflection, i.e. to continuously analyze ourselves in order not to develop any path-dependencies.
3. Family Enterprise
The WITTENSTEIN group is a family-owned enterprise. The WITTENSTEIN family members use their best endeavors to maintain the balance between enterprise and family interests.
WITTENSTEIN is a family enterprise. A large part of the assets of the WITTENSTEIN family is tied to the WITTENSTEIN group. The family thereby assumes a high risk, family and enterprise frame, so to speak, a community of solidarity: To safeguard the future of all those involved and to their descendants, both parties need to enter into commitments, take over responsibility and demonstrate reliability.
The WITTENSTEIN family chart serves to steer the interaction ¬between shareholders, family and enterprise into a direction which allows the family to maintain the enterprise as a family business so that all those involved can reap sustainable benefit. Value congruence is prerequisite to the achievement of these goals. That is another reason why the WITTENSTEIN family in their family chart has explicitly subjected their actions to the corporate WITTENSTEIN philosophy.
The WITTENSTEIN family stands behind their company with their name and reputation. This is what all employees must be aware of in their actions as each single action may have an immediate impact on the reputation of the WITTENSTEIN family.
WITTENSTEIN and their workforce enter into a mutual commitment and each party takes over responsibility for the other.
Similar to that between family and enterprise is the relationship between the WITTENSTEIN group and their employees. Both sides enter into a mutual commitment based on trust and reliability and in doing so each side takes over responsibility for the other. Paramount to the WITTENSTEIN enterprise is the dignity of their employees or, in other words, the human being's value which commands respect and gives each person his due importance. We trust our people and are their reliable partner. We do not exploit our workers’ manpower but aim to maintain it as we strive for long-term partnerships. We want to develop and call upon our staff's potential. Our employees, in turn, make responsible use of their manpower, never stop developing and are also a reliable partner.
We establish a fertile relationship with our customers in which we demonstrate reliability and take over responsibility.
We forge a partner relationship with our customers, a relationship which is of permanent benefit for both parties. We keep our word and treat each other with fairness. We do not lie and deceive but play with open cards because this is the only way to create long-term trust. Our customers can rely on us. This conduct forces us to constantly think ahead of our customers' possible needs and to develop appropriate solutions to satisfy them.
6. Common Interest Outweighs Self Interests
The common interest of the WITTENSTEIN group comes before the individual interests of the network units.
The WITTENSTEIN group is an intelligent and synergetic network which consists of many network units (business units, divisions, the roof the Hidden Champions act under). Each network unit has its own goals and is to consistently pursue them without, however, losing sight of the goals and interests of the Group as a whole or acting at the expense of other network units. This is why in our thoughts and actions we always put the common interest of the WITTENSTEIN group above that of single network units. Only in this way can we ensure survival of the Group over time.
If possible and allowed, handle matters on a local level (i.e. on a decentralized, local basis).
The wording "on site" is to be understood in a geographical (local) sense as well as in an organizational (decentralized) one. It goes without saying that the principle may only be applied in the context of the other guidelines (e.g. other corporate business principles, rules of internal procedure, administrative regulations, competencies). Example: The "Common Interest Outweighs Self Interests" principle cannot be bypassed by applying the subsidiarity principle.
Subsidiarity provides, among others, the following advantages: speed, close proximity to the problem or task, better decisions.
We do not take risks we cannot manage ourselves.
Taking risks is part of business. There is no innovation without risk because every innovation means to cross borders and enter unknown territory. The risks involved in entrepreneurial decisions and, in particular, in innovation processes need to be named and assessed. Furthermore, action must be defined for risk prevention and reduction. The risk that remains is the one discussed herein. In light of our responsibility towards the owners, towards our workforce and their families as well as towards future generations, we never use the enterprise as a whole (in the sense of: "betting the farm"), i.e. we do not take a risk which, when it actually occurs, we cannot master by using our own resources and within a reasonable time. This principle analogously applies to the sum of all risks (e.g. combination of process risks, socio-cultural risks, market risks).
9. In Compliance with Laws
The companies under the WITTENSTEIN group as well as their workforce abide by all laws and other provisions of the countries they operate in.
It is a matter of course for us to respect the laws and provisions of the countries in which we do business. At the same time, however, we never lose sight of our own normative framework.
We thus not only make a valuable contribution to the enhancement of the WITTENSTEIN brand but also ensure the reputation of the WITTENSTEIN family.
10. Social Acceptance
We strive for social acceptance of our entrepreneurial activities.
The welfare of a society (which may be, for example, the inhabitants of Igersheim or the entire population of China) is closely linked to the capability of developing and using new technologies and products. WITTENSTEIN believes in scientific research when technological risks and benefits need to be determined. It is in the interest of WITTENSTEIN to develop, manufacture and market products and solutions in such a way as to turn them into a lasting contribution to the well-being of a society. For this reason, we take not only our customers' needs but also those of society into consideration when we develop, produce and market our products and solutions. We carry out meticulous analyses in all areas of operation and at all sites that are based on scientific findings, and maintain regular contact with our social environment. The goal of these activities is the broad and general acceptance within society of the technologies we use as well as of the products and solutions we provide so that we can develop and live our values on a stable basis.