Interview on St.Gallen Management Diploma

10 questions for Dirk Spitthoff

  1. What were the reasons behind the decision for a diploma?

    After a few years I wanted to refresh my knowledge from my studies again, but not simply by attending seminars. I wanted a knowledge update in combination with a practical application and professional support and feedback.
  2. Why did you choose Management School St.Gallen?

    There are certainly many providers of management seminars. Management School St.Gallen convinced me with the concept of modular knowledge transfer and the subsequent application (exam and diploma).
  3. What was the most important experience in your diploma studies?

    The composition of the participants was very interesting for me in order to learn from other industries. Ideas are not industry-specific and so I got some interesting ideas for my professional work.
  4. If you think of the beginning of the diploma course: What has changed personally or professionally compared to today?

    Since I was already working as a division manager, the position in the company has not changed. However, a lot has changed for my employees, for example we are now developing new services with the help of the Business Model Canvas or often discuss the management wheel and job design.
  5. What can you immediately implement in your company?

    My diploma thesis!
  6. What is the added value of your diploma course for your company?

    My employer now has an employee with the latest software in mind. In addition, my diploma thesis showed how important company decisions can be justified and developed scientifically.
  7. Were the seminar modules or the diploma thesis more important to you?

    I found the seminar modules to be optimally combined, and I also liked the intensive communication of the content. The diploma thesis simply appealed to me and I am glad that I wrote it, even if it took a few evenings and weekends.
  8. What happened to the result of your thesis?

    We implement the results in the company.
  9. What are your 5 key learnings from the study modules?
    • Further develop the strengths of the employees and do not invest in compensating for the weaknesses (job design and assignments).
    • The simplicity of mapping relationships through the Business Model Canvas.
    • The success of the past and the present can be tomorrow's failure.
    • Innovation for your own industry is the transfer of ideas from other industries, no matter how crazy it seems.
    • How to concentrate on updating your knowledge all day without a cell phone or email.
  10. Did your view of management change during your studies?

    Definitely yes!


Dirk Spitthoff is a graduate of the St. Gallen Management Diploma. At that time he was head of the accounting department at Kassenärztlichen Vereinigung Westfalen-Lippe.