Radek Knoll

Location Van Leeuwen Czech Republic
Position Operations Manager
Employed by Van Leeuwen since 2021
Age 48

‘Czech customers are highly demanding,’ says Operations Manager Radek Knoll of Van Leeuwen Czech Republic. To meet their rigorous demands, the branch, under his guidance, is working on expanding and professionalizing the warehouse. ‘We are increasing our capacity, broadening our product range and stepping up our efficiency.’

‘Before I started working at Van Leeuwen as Operations Manager in 2021, I was familiar with Van Leeuwen as supplier,’ says Radek. ‘Before that I worked in the construction sector and for an engineering firm. My first impression at the time was that the company supplies high-quality products and services and has a great deal of in-house knowledge. The Van Leeuwen companies share lots of information, experience and knowledge among themselves. This enables them to determine the best possible service for their customers. And the company culture is open and friendly.’

Radek was hired in 2021 to supervise the expansion and professionalization of the warehouse in Vyškov (see next page). Thanks to this investment, Van Leeuwen Czech Republic is increasing the warehouse’s capacity and is stepping up the efficiency of its logistics processes. This enables Van Leeuwen Czech Republic to improve its service delivery and serve a larger region. The warehouse is expected to be fully operational in June 2023. Radek: ‘Now that I work here, I am personally experiencing what it is like to work for the market leader in this sector. Everything I see shows that Van Leeuwen values growth, high quality and customer-oriented service, and invests in this. For example, due to the enormous expansion of our storage capacity and the KASTO system (see next page). This makes me feel perfectly at home.’

Strong regional bonds

‘Typical of Czech people is that they have a strong bond with the place where they are born,’ says Radek. ‘Czechs live and work in a radius of approximately 100 km from their place of birth and are not likely to be willing to move for their work. As a consequence, it is often difficult to find well-educated employees in thinly inhabited industrial areas. We are affected by this in Vyškov as well. Many industrial companies are domiciled in this region, all of whom recruit their personnel from the same pool. Fortunately, Van Leeuwen has a very good reputation. We are considered to be one of the best employers in the region.’

‘In addition, Czechs are well-known for their hospitality, including toward people from other countries,’ Radek continues. ‘We also highly value having a proper work/personal life balance and are very social. In our free time we often meet up with family and friends and in the summer, we organize large garden parties.'

Highly demanding

A personal approach is important in contact with customers, Radek emphasizes. ‘In addition, Czechs are highly demanding, just like our neighbors in Western Europe. Supplying quality products on time is a given. We make the difference at Van Leeuwen on the basis of the added value we are able to offer our customers and the turnkey solutions we supply, and of course in the near future on the basis of the expansion and professionalization of our warehouse.’