MEET WITH Matthias Schenk
As the Managing Director of CLBS-Chiang Mai Lanna Business Services Ltd., Matthias Schenk believes the best approach to growing a business and to changing the world is to focus on the individual development of each person in that company. That is why CLBS, a software and customer care service company in Chiang Mai, has quickly become the biggest employer of Europeans in Northern Thailand (180 European employees) as well as the biggest employer of German people all over Thailand.
Where are you from and for how long have you been working at CLBS?
"I am from Berlin. I started working at CLBS 11 years ago. Before that I was working in one of their partner companies in Germany."
What do you like most about CLBS?
"I like the warm and welcoming atmosphere of the company but, most of all, I like the idea of working within a multicultural team and environment. Having so many people from so many different backgrounds is always interesting. Of course, being located in the fascinating city of Chiang Mai is another reason why we all love working here."
Name one of the biggest challenges in your profession?
"With 180 foreign employees, one of the biggest challenges is to adhere to the regulations of the Thai government. Thai laws are revised often, and we must be up to date at all times. But we were very proud to be invited by the Thai government to be one of the first five companies in Thailand to test the new online work permit service. Another interesting challenge is to help our employees by trying to be a kind of substitution for family and friends to our team members when they, sometimes, feel lost or homesick. Living in a different country with a different culture can be difficult sometimes, but not for long."
Does your company also employ students?
"Yes, we have a "Work and Study" project which allows younger employees to work at CLBS and study English or Thai languages at Chiang Mai University. At the end of their six-month contract, they receive a certificate from us. Most of the time, they enjoy living here so much that they want to continue the experience: that's why they usually sign-up for a one-year contract with us in Chiang Mai, before going back to their country."
In Chiang Mai, what do you like to do during your days off?
"I like to discover new coffee shops, then just sit in and relax."
What is your favourite restaurant?
"There are so many! But I like Street Pizza's balcony a lot."
CLBS-Chiang Mai Lanna Business Services Ltd. is an outsourcing- company which assists small and medium-size companies as well as freelancers throughout Europe and Asia. They are supported by the Board of Investment of Thailand. For further details, please contact: www.clbs.co.th or call 053-904 748.