Andreas Bartels | Influence 100
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Andreas Bartels

Head of Communications 
Lufthansa
Germany

 

 

Having spent four years in media relations corporate communications for Deutsche Bank, Andreas Bartels was familiar with the pressure of being responsible for the reputation of one of Germany’s largest and most respected companies before he joined national airline Lufthansa as media relations chief in 2007. But nothing in any other sector could have prepared him for the crisis that struck when a pilot for low-cost Lufthansa brand Germanwings flew his plane into side of a mountain in March of 2015.
 
Bartels was at the right hand of Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr during the aftermath of the crisis, reaching out to victims’ families, taking a progressive attitude towards regulatory and safety changes, and protecting the company’s reputation. This year, of course, the company faced another reputation challenge, with Covid-19 ravaging the travel industry, donating a million face masks and paying workers who volunteered to work in medical facilities.
 
Bartels was previously press spokesman at the Niedersächsischer Sparkassen-und Giroverband and subsequently at Comdirekt bank before moving to Deutsche Bank in 2002, serving as director and head of press and media relations in the private and business clients division.

Can you share a moment in your career when you saw PR's direct impact on business performance?
It is true in any cases of crisis.

What are the comms industry's biggest challenges and opportunities in the year ahead?
Overcoming the Covid-19 crisis.

What have you most admired about this industry in 2020?
The ability to constantly adapt to an ever faster changing world.

What has most disappointed you about this industry in 2020?
The lack of convincing answers to Covid-19 challenges.

How have you switched off from work and maintained wellness in lockdown?
Keeping close relations to friends and family – even though you cannot meet with everyone in person.

Which book/movie/TV show/podcast/playlist/other cultural source has helped you get through this year or provided inspiration?
Artists against Corona

If I wasn't working in marketing/communications, I would be...
...somewhere else.

Sum up 2020 in one word.
Tough.