The Jenny Gusyk “FAMILY-FRIENDLY LEADERSHIP AWARD" 2020 is awarded annually to a manager at the University of Cologne, who has actively achieved improvements in the compatibility of family or care work and career in his or her own unit. This year, the prize, endowed with €1,000, was awarded to Prof. Dr Christian-Mathias Wellbrock, who holds the Chair of Media and Technology Management at the WiSo Faculty.
He had been nominated by his staff-members Lea Püchel and Daniel O'Brien. Research assistant Lea Püchel explains: "Mr. Wellbrock deserves the award because he enables all of us to develop ourselves, while taking into account our individual personal circumstances.”
Especially in the last few months, family-conscious leadership was an important topic and a particular challenge. Scientists with family responsibilities had to struggle to keep digital teaching and research alive, while at the same time caring for the family and children. Prof. Wellbrock has found solutions for this.
Very early on, he recognised the particular psychological strains of the situation, named then and offered his team the opportunity to talk about them directly. On the other hand, Professor Wellbrock was quick to realise, that the continuation of digital teaching, had mostly been at the expense of research. Therefore, he allows his team flexible research weeks and months to catch up on their research work. When asked about his particular sensitivity, Christian Wellbrock says modestly: "As a leading person, I consider it part of my job to provide the framework conditions under which the employees can lead a happy life, and family naturally plays a major role here".
Congratulations to Prof. Dr. Wellbrock!
The other awards at the Jenny Gusyk Award 2020 went to Sabine Graf (Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences) with the "Innovation Award" and Janine Fißmer from the Faculty of Human Sciences of the University of Cologne with the "Young Talent Award”.