Andreas Bartels | Influence 100

Andreas Bartels

Head of Communications 



Having spent four years in media relations and 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. More recently, of course, the company faced another reputation challenge, with Covid 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
Crisis comms after an aircraft accident.

What are the communications industry’s biggest challenges and opportunities in the year ahead?
Align sustainability/ESG goals with company goals in a trustful and credible way.

What have you most admired about this industry over the past year?
Speed of transformation.

What has most disappointed you about this industry over the past year?
Lacking ability to fight fake news/wrong facts.

How have you switched off from work and maintained wellness in lockdown?
Sports is the key.

Which book/movie/TV show/podcast/playlist/other cultural source has helped you get through this year or provided inspiration?
All kinds of history podcasts; puts things into perspective.

If I wasn't working in marketing/communications, I would be...
A lawyer.

Sum up 2021 in one word.