A soon as we are greeted by Jaroslaw Kuczynski, we see: This man is happy. The 43-year old has started to work in the Quality Management of BIRKENSTOCK in Görlitz. “My first application immediately worked out”, the former basketball player says. He applied from Manchester. In April 2005, Kuczynski and his wife took their first trip from Warsaw to Great Britain, at first only three months. The trained engineer and marketing alumni wanted to learn English. “It was the idea of my wife”, he says with a wink. The second time, they were set to stay for six months. Jaroslaw found a good job in a German company, his wife working as a nutrition consultant in a hospital. The Kuczynskis stayed longer.
Yet, now their home is calling. “Our daughter is six years now, and before she starts school, we made up our minds on where we want to live”, the cheerful giant says. Asked, if there were more reasons, he tells us: “Sure, the weather, the food and the Brexit!”
The cliché of the rainy England seems to be true for Manchester, Brexit effects have been palpable since February 2019. “Our orders dropped, the mood got worse, and the insecurity became obvious every day.”
Jaroslaw Kuczynski searched the internet for jobs in Görlitz, to be closer to his home again. When he learned that BIRKENSTOCK was looking for support in the QM sector, he applied and did not have to wait for an answer. “I was just on vacation in Poland, when the HR department called, it was a happy trip to the job interview.” The negotiations were successful and the cheerful bold headed man started to work and now takes care of the quality in the footbed production of Germany’s biggest shoe manufacturer.
As a private man, Jaroslaw is now a cross-border-commuter. His small family has bought a flat in Zgorzelec. His wife takes care of the home and takes some time off from her job. Their daughter attends the Polish kindergarten on the Polish side of the European town.
Now, father Jaroslaw needs 15 minutes to work outside of Görlitz. How does he see the first weeks in his old new home region? “Great weather, good work, good payment. The colleagues are nice and patient with me. Everything looks good. I feel at home now.”