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Frank – Store manager, Australia
Frank started working at IKEA 25 years ago. “After an apprenticeship in the building industry and two years’ work, I worried that I would be stuck in the same routine and city all my life!” he explains. So Frank decided to look around and joined IKEA in the area of retail. Since then, he has worked in numerous cities around his home country Germany including Stuttgart, Eching, Chemnitz, Berlin, Wallau and Cologne.

In 2000, Frank was offered a position in Brisbane, Australia and he has been there for the last five years. “It’s always exciting and inspiring to live and work in a new city,” he says. “The jobs are similar, but everything else is new: the market, the co-workers and the focus of work.”

In his time at IKEA Frank has worked his way up from warehouse temp to store manager. “IKEA offered, and still continues to offer, a multitude of seminars. The early seminars were more industry specific and later became more leadership oriented” he explains. “At IKEA we believe it’s important to understand the theory behind your work and then learn to put this theory into practice.”

He appreciates that IKEA has opened many doors for him. “It isn’t your background that matters, it’s your potential – at IKEA there are no limits to what you can achieve, but it’s up to you take the opportunities,” he says.

Frank goes on to explain the skills required in his current managerial role. “A good starting point is an exceptional understanding of the IKEA business model and of the local market,” he says. “You also need to inspire, motivate and lead a team.”

Frank obviously has these skills well-honed; after 5 years in Brisbane, IKEA has experienced 60% volume growth there. So successful has the store been, that a new one is soon to be opened to accommodate the increasing volumes. Frank insists that this success is down to the hard work of everyone involved “At IKEA, every single individual within the team contributes to the success of the business.”
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