A native of Brazil, Carlos Almeida leads Skeleton Technologies’ factory in Grossröhrsdorf and manages our activities in Germany. Carlos joined the company in October 2019, bringing over 18 years of international experience in manufacturing and business.
Can you tell us more about your background and what brought you to Skeleton?
- I have studied mechanical engineering before completing an MBA later. Before joining Skeleton, I had worked for over 18 years in different sectors and companies, which were all related to manufacturing, holding leadership positions at the medical devices and wind turbines industries, the latter for 10 years. In my career, I successfully drove initiatives to support business growth, transfer technologies, convert existing facilities and improve their capacity and operational effectiveness.
What attracted me to Skeleton is the challenge that I saw of joining a young and innovative company where I could make a real difference. I was already a fan of the product before joining! I saw this opportunity to support Skeleton driving its business forward, bringing my skills and the strong focus on operational excellence I have always had.
What are your main tasks as a factory manager and managing director and what do you enjoy the most working at Skeleton?
- As factory manager, I oversee that we are delivering on time, with the best products and the highest standards. It is important for us to fulfill orders and execute our production strategy because this is critical for Skeleton’s reputation with clients. As managing director, I am also responsible for Skeleton Technologies GmbH, together with Taavi and Ants. Therefore, I must support our business strategy, engage with local stakeholders such as the Saxony Investment Bank, help us attract talent from the region and show we make an impact here.
What I enjoy the most is the fact I am working in a young and international company that is always innovating and bringing new ideas. Thanks to the company’s culture, it is easier and faster to implement new things, compared to other and bigger companies. You can challenge the status quo and always suggest new ways of doing things.
What are your keys to motivate and support your team and reach the goals?
- One of my major tasks is indeed to help the team reach the goals. Communication and transparency are critical. We must involve everyone to keep people motivated and make sure goals are understood, every employee knows what the team must achieve and how they contribute. To me, this is definitely the key to success. Each person, each employee has a role to play and is important to the company. People must feel trusted and empowered and they must be included in the bigger picture and the company’s strategy. This is even more critical in Skeleton’s case, with teams based in Estonia and Germany where it could be easy to work as two separate entities not sharing information with each other. This is why, for instance, we regularly organize town hall meetings, where we show we are, what we could improve and which contribution is expected. We are stronger and more successful together as a team.
Skeleton recently hosted the President of Estonia and the Minister-President of Saxony in our factory in in Grossröhrsdorf. How did it go and why was it important?
- For us, it was a very important achievement, a great recognition of the work we are doing. The team was extremely proud, particularly because our families and friends saw it, since the visit has been widely covered in local media. We have received very positive feedback and this visit really helped increase our visibility and attractivity in Saxony.
Skeleton is currently actively recruiting new talents. What are the qualities you are looking for?
- To me, the main ones are to be a team-player and to be open to a diverse and international environment. We want people who are looking forward achieving high level of performance and quality and also enjoying our open company culture.
You have worked and lived in Brazil, in the US, in Denmark, in Germany… How does this international experience influence the way you work?
- I think it gave me the ability to be adaptable to different mentalities and ways of thinking. When I worked in the US, I had to understand a different way of working and developing a factory, which is obviously different from the way factories and business are done in Germany. Denmark gave me my first experience in a European business environment, with European mentality. Also, when I moved to Germany, I did not even speak the language and now I am fluent. You must always be willing to learn and adapt, understand how others think. I believe this is why I enjoy working in an international environment at Skeleton and acting sometimes as the go-between for teams in Germany and Estonia to make sure teamwork across borders is smooth.