HBPO marketing manager: “I love going to work”

Career and family doesn’t work? – Yes, it does! Melanie shows how it’s done. The 38-year-old marketing manager and mother of two lives life on the creative fast lane, but also explains why it is sometimes more relaxed not to take part in all competitions!

Melanie, you work for the Marketing at HBPO – what stimulates you?

The clear answer is the variety. In Marketing I have opportunities and room for lots of creativity. No two subjects are the same. My work varies greatly – it includes everything from the company magazine to press releases and from case studies to our positioning in social media.

I can think freely and express my ideas. We work in a small team that thinks big. It’s fun to see our impulses grow – I think that’s why I enjoy working for  Marketing so much.

How long have you been working for HPBO and how did you find out about the company?

Since 2014. I applied to HBPO following a recommendation by my family. Once I had sent off my application, everything went very quickly. I received an invitation to the first interview, with the second following promptly.

How can I describe it ... the chemistry was right from the very start!

What is a typical working day like for you?


With my work, there is no such thing as a typical working day. My working week has about 20 working hours. Thanks to the wide range of tasks, there’s no room for routine and boredom. There are a few things that determine my working procedure of course. Nevertheless, every day is different, since things are constantly happening that let me see the big picture.


Alongside your profession as a marketing manager, you are also a loving mother! – Does your creative job offset the structured role you have as a mother?

I have to say here, too: it’s all in the mix! A good balance between structure and flexibility is very important to me.

It’s not only about juggling creative ideas and putting them into practice. My job as a marketing manager demands initiative and the ability to organise myself. That’s no different to my job as a “family manager”.

When I’m at home with my family I recharge my batteries for work. At work I get the balance necessary for my family life. It is the combination of the two that is very satisfying.

How do you manage the balancing act between work and family?

The magic word is “organisation”. If this should fail, I can fall back on my good network of grandmother, grandfather, aunt and uncle.

HBPO supports me as well through the flexibility they allow me. I have an individual and flexible working hours model. This is a great help when things get a bit frantic.

What I still have to learn, though, is to look after myself a bit. Quite often, the intention is there, but ...  I’m working on it.

Two children and at least a 45-minute drive to work and back. Why do you do it?

The overall package is what makes it worth it. I admit that the driving time is a challenge, but HBPO is obliging here as well.

HBPO allows me to split my 20 hours a week over 3 working days. This means I can really make the most of my working hours and have the other days to concentrate on my family.

Working on a level playing field is what makes the difference. I benefit from different working hours models, tailor-made to individual life situations, for example. Which is why I am happy to accept the driving time. Positive side-effect: my best ideas come to me while I’m driving!

How would you answer the following question: being a mother and being on the career ladder – does that still work these days?

If there’s one thing I have learnt, then that there is no such thing as proper timing. With children, things always happen differently than planned, which means plans are not the decisive factor.

It is important to praise yourself now and again and to accept that there are more career concepts than that of a top manager. There is also the concept of those who strive to become an expert in what they do. I am one of those women who thrive on challenges!

Where do you get your strength for every day from? Is there something that really helps you relax?

Definitely from the moments where I can be who I am and let the “madness” flow. I love laughing – both at home and at HBPO! That often “defuses” stressful situations.



You sound like a real all-rounder to us. What Olympic discipline would you see yourself competing in as a marketing manager and mother?

Over time I have learnt that I do not have to take part in every competition. Sometimes I just lean back and don’t join in the race. I wouldn’t manage it in terms of time anyway. Which is why I would say “Octathlon”!

Life is so much more relaxed that way.

If you had to describe HBPO in one sentence, what would you say?

HBPO – the family-friendly world market leader!

The company has a broad basis, but doesn’t lose sight of individuals! – That is what makes HBPO so approachable!