Business voice:


Video Interview

Lena Schrum is a co-founder of aware_THE PLATFORM. Together with her co-founder Kim Fischer, she founded the sustainability platform in order to show companies their way to more sustainable acting. They stand for change and new ways of working. Always with the ambition to make the world, and in this case especially Berlin’s corporate world, a better place for all of us and not to close our eyes to the problems that advancing globalization and digitalization bring with them.

Introduce yourself and your mission in under 30 seconds:  

I am Lena Schrum and a co-founder of aware. Thank you so much for having me here.

We are a sustainability platform and our mission is to provide guidance to companies as well as individuals so that they can find their way into sustainability and all that with a very positive approach and without a raised finger.


Which of the two words “Grow” and “Together” means more to you and what does it mean to you personally?

If I had to choose between the words “Grow” and “Together”, then definitely “Together”. Especially as a former professional soccer player, I know how important it is to have a working team: You can have a team of brilliant individuals, but if they don’t play together on the pitch, they won’t win a game. And it’s the same in business: our success depends on our collaborative energy. When we bring our skills together and work on a common goal, then we become successful and then we can grow together.


How do you specifically work with companies?

We work with companies as part of a membership. That means we offer them guidance in the form of different events – from masterclasses to workshops or even our big conference. In other words, we repeatedly provide the right incentives for companies, look at what their biggest challenges are in terms of sustainability and what is at the top of their agenda, in order to bring together the right people with the right contacts.


How does the Corona crisis affect your work in terms of sustainability?

The whole Corona crisis has shown, by necessity, that remote working actually works. We realized that we can attract talent and experts to the company better if we offer a flexible remote culture. Every individual has different needs when it comes to their work environment: some prefer to work at home, others prefer to work from the office where they have their own structures. Or from the beach, from the mountains, wherever. And on top of that, there are also different daily rhythms, some prefer to work early, others prefer to work late: The early risers and the night owls. And we want to give our employees exactly this flexibility so that they can develop to the best of their abilities. That’s why we have a smaller office in Berlin, where everyone can get together how and when they want – otherwise remote is the way to go. I would reject a pure remote culture because I do think: people need people. It’s precisely these small social moments that are incredibly important. The short chat at the coffee machine, for example which creates a personal bond, is incredibly important for team building. And that’s why we also have regular physical meetings, if that’s possible due to corona. Maybe we also have a larger meetup once in a while, where we go to a house somewhere out of the city and work together for a few days and have this team feeling.

What I find highly exciting about Berlin is that the whole world comes together here. You have such a great diversity of people, cultures, nationalities and ways of working here, so you get very inspired and fall for the creative atmosphere. But there are also big international companies here. Tesla is coming here now. There is so much movement here, so much happening in this city. And for us it’s the perfect starting point, because our whole resilient network is actually based in Berlin.


What do you think will be the biggest problems and the biggest opportunities for the future in terms of progress and sustainability? 

I would say a big challenge especially from the consumer perspective is still the lack of skills in sustainability. Many still find the topic very complex and some simply lack the necessary financial resources. I think education still plays an important role in order to carry this topic from the schools into families and beyond. And that’s where I get the big picture of the importance of individual action.

On the corporate side, it’s very important to have the right mindset that sustainability is not just a trend, but should be part of the corporate strategy. Nevertheless, we often observe that the right impulses, innovations and sometimes also contacts are missing – this is precisely where we want to start and support companies.

A major topic in the context of sustainability is definitely Circular Economy, because the concept of the circular economy is definitely the economic model of the future.

Companies can preserve value, save resources, but also increase profits.

The whole Circular Economy theme is about materials being part of a cycle and energy coming from renewable sources.

Interview conducted by Svea Fina.

Managed by BEOS