Interview with Michael Keller

Responsibility means loyalty, trust and reliability

22. August 2023
Today, in the Sihl Faces interview, we introduce you to Michael Keller, our Sales Director Signage & Photo. What role does a sense of responsibility play for him in general, but especially in his job at Sihl? And what do his children have to do with it? Find out all about it here.

How do you define the term responsibility in general?

Michael Keller: For me, the term has two dimensions: On the one hand, it is of course about how I act myself. That is the area of personal responsibility and self-determination. Beyond that, I also bear some responsibility for the actions of my employees, my company and my customers. Ideally, you take responsibility as a child – for example, with the first pet you take care of. These are the first steps in learning responsibility. And if you enjoy taking responsibility, as I do, your sense of duty grows over the course of your life, as does the responsibility you are willing to bear. My core messages with regard to responsibility are loyalty, trust and reliability.


What does responsibility mean to you in terms of your job?

Michael Keller: In terms of my job, the responsibility is manifold. I have responsibility for the company and the implementation of the values it defines, for my employees and colleagues, for our customers and, in this context, of course also for our products and their impact. At Sihl, there is the #Sihljourney. The company, with all its employees around the world, has set out together to live defined values. In concrete terms, these are responsibility, passion, innovation and cooperation. These are values that are also very important to me, otherwise I would not be able to represent them, even with regard to the company I work for. Only in this way am I able to take responsibility for Sihl, its employees, customers and products. And that is certainly also a decision criterion for a company. When you get to know each other, you already find out where the values lie and it is a basic requirement that I share them, otherwise I cannot do justice to the responsibility later on. That is a common thread.


Is a sense of responsibility also about sustainability?

Michael Keller: Absolutely. I would even say we are living in the century of sustainability. It is not a fad that will soon be over. The topic of sustainability will be with us for a very long time. For me personally – not least as a father – sustainability is very important. I am therefore all the more pleased that sustainability, as I have already said, is also an essential part of the #Sihljourney: sustainable action, sustainable products, sustainable production.

The topic of sustainability should not be underestimated for companies, also in view of the ever-increasing shortage of skilled workers. 30 years ago, the first priority was to find a job in the first place. Today, young people have the opportunity to orient themselves on their values when looking for a job. Sustainability is certainly one of them. Young people, as I find out again and again in conversations with my children, also want to work to change something and make society a little better. These are not empty phrases, they really want to do that. And in the end, that’s what drives me too: What I can achieve at Sihl pays into the future of my children. In the meantime, my generation has also developed an awareness of the fact that we can’t just live as we please, but that we have to consciously manage our resources. That is everyone’s own responsibility.