• Internal
  • Special

Two Years of Valdivia –
and the Journey Goes On

  • Internal
  • Special

It was the year 2020. The future sudden­ly seemed uncer­tain. New rules, that we had yet to get used to, deter­mined our lives. People stayed inside their hous­es and often saw each other screen-to-screen only. Those who ventured outdoors, covered their faces with a mask.

A Begin­ning in Turbu­lent Times

And yet, Daniel Bauer and Antho­ny Baum­ruk would not falter. They believed in an idea: bring­ing togeth­er enter­pris­es and exec­u­tive person­al­i­ties in a novel, in a person­al way. What made their idea so special was in the detail. They want­ed to focus on a single work segment, the construc­tion and real estate busi­ness – and thus bring their indus­try exper­tise to bear. Also, they did not want to leave their recruit­ing success to chance. They had devel­oped a system­at­ic proce­dure, with every step being well-planned, trans­par­ent, and measur­able. Third­ly and final­ly, they saw them­selves as commit­ted compan­ions that would be avail­able for all parties involved, even after the search process had been finished. In short, it was not about quick and easy deals for the two founders, but about reli­able and sustain­able results – in other words, it was about depth.

With the concept of depth came the name, inspired by the first German research vessel, Valdivia. In Febru­ary 2021, the time was right: The Valdivia enter­prise appeared before the public – despite “stormy seas, a bad view, and the wind in our faces“: with a lot of opti­mism and the pursua­sive­ness of a power­ful idea.

The Show Must Go On!

It was a begin­ning in tough times – full of ideas, hopes, but with the odd pitfall as well. It was espe­cial­ly diffi­cult to put the person­al approach forward in video calls or with covered faces. And some­times, fate threw other things in the way. Just like when Daniel Bauer was asked to trav­el to Munich at short notice. Time was running out. Howev­er, arriv­ing late was not an option. The taxi ploughed its way through rush hour traf­fic ever so slowly…

…until it hit Valdivia’s founder very hard! Anoth­er vehi­cle had crashed into the taxi. Splin­ter­ing glass. Screech­ing brakes. One door wedged. But the appoint­ment was still on! Daniel Bauer picked himself up, climbed out of the dent­ed cab – and found anoth­er taxi that had stopped right next to them. Two minutes later, he was stand­ing at the arranged meet­ing point, still on time and with a conge­nial farewell from the second taxi’s driver, “This ride will not cost you anything!“ (of course, he spoke in the strong Bavar­i­an accent so typi­cal of the good people of Munich). Some­times, it just takes all your commit­ment to live up to your own stan­dards. By the way, the ensu­ing talk was a success for all parties and result­ed in a new mandate, even if Daniel Bauer still felt the impact of the incident.

The Second Year

Step by step, the Valdivia idea prevailed. The enter­prise went from a newcom­er, that some­times met with curios­i­ty, some­times with a smile, to an insid­ers’ tip. The indus­try took notice. Renowned media like Frank­furter Allge­meine invit­ed the founders for inter­views. The number of mandates was increas­ing. To date, Valdivia has been able to real­ize 650+ person­al client appoint­ments and success­ful­ly closed 31 projects – with 17 more current­ly on-going in differ­ent stages of the Valdivia Exec­u­tive Search process.

The team has grown as well. When estab­lish­ing the compa­ny, it includ­ed Antho­ny Baum­ruk and Daniel Bauer, but also Maren Fleck as the Exec­u­tive Assis­tant. In 2021, Jessi­ca Böser became an Asso­ciate, followed by Saad Malik join­ing the Valdivia crew as a Prin­ci­pal. Also, the enter­prise moored in its final (for the time being) harbour, Frankfurt’s elegant Opern­platz. Would there be any loca­tion more fitting for an Exec­u­tive Search consul­tan­cy in the real estate sector than this: between Wilhelmi­an archi­tec­ture and the towers of Mainhattan’s impres­sive skyline?

A Matter of the Future and the Heart: Sustainability

2022 also saw the start of a long-term sustain­abil­i­ty program, or ESG program, respec­tive­ly. Sustain­abil­i­ty has always been natur­al for the Valdivia crew; it its the very foun­da­tion of their own approach: Wher­ev­er Valdivia consul­tants recruit, they aim for a perma­nent, long-term solu­tion – for  person­al­i­ties that truly match the client and will have a future with them.

There­fore, Future is the keyword for the program. So, for Valdivia, the letter G does not only stand for  Good Gover­nance, but also for ”Grund­stein“, German for corner stone. With regard to the envi­ron­ment, it is the oceans and their lamen­ta­ble devel­op­ment into a plas­tic waste dump that calls for increased aware­ness. S is for Social, a special matter of the heart. In this field, Valdivia has found a trust­wor­thy and commit­ted part­ner in the Children’s Future Foun­da­tion and gives special support to the Aldea Infan­til Children’s Village in Guatemala.

Growth, but with a Sense of Proportion

Today, it seems we have over­come the hard­est econom­ic down­swings of the year 2022. Even if we cannot expect “Full steam ahead“ yet again in the construc­tion and real estate busi­ness, there are indi­ca­tors that allow for some opti­mism. And so Valdivia is head­ed for growth but always with a good sense of propor­tion. “For we are never happy with the status quo“, says Daniel Bauer. The Crew will have new members in Support and Engage­ment Manage­ment. At the same time, special talents will always be welcome. After all, the plan is to substan­tial­ly increase the number of projects Valdivia is work­ing on.

Valdivia also intends to strength­en their network at large real estate fairs and conven­tions. After the team target­ed the most impor­tant events in the indus­try in 2022, they are now set to seize the oppor­tu­ni­ty to further expand person­al contacts in 2023 – just like the contact with the Children’s Future Foun­da­tion and the Children’s Village.

And so social commit­ment and the idea that marked the begin­ning of the Valdivia jour­ney come togeth­er: a strong focus of oppor­tu­ni­ties and ener­gy on a clear-cut goal. The inter­play of exper­tise, expe­ri­ence and person­al engage­ment. Think­ing and acting with depth.