The DPHA 17-in-17 Program recognizes up-and-coming influencers in the decorative plumbing and hardware business. This program will profile 17 DPHA members with 10 or less years of experience. Each month from June through October 2017, members will be inducted into the 17-in-17 club, and their stories will be featured in DPHA's weekly newsletter, Connections. This week we recognize Katharina Adrian, a Product Manager at Dornbracht Americas in the Atlanta, GA area.
Katharina is part of a Dornbracht program in Germany which sends an employee to the United States for two years to learn about our work culture, and according to one of her nominators, "Katharina very quickly adapted to her new role as product manager and easily became a valued member of the Dornbracht team." In fact, she has enjoyed her work in the U.S. so much that she has continued to stay here well past her 2-year commitment. And per another nominator, Katharina has an empathetic attitude and is willing to listen to clients while helping provide answers to solve any issue.
Connections: How long have you been in the DPH industry?
Katharina: I started my career at Dornbracht in Germany seven years ago where I entered a program that included an apprenticeship along with a Bachelor of Arts degree. After I graduated in 2013, I started as Product Manager for our North American subsidiary in Atlanta.
Connections: What has surprised you about the industry?
Katharina: In my 4 years of attending DPHA, I have always noticed people using the word "family" when describing this industry. Meeting and getting to know more and more people over the years made me realize why. It's great to see a community that is so committed to supporting each other whether you are working for a manufacturer, showroom or rep agency. Especially being relatively new to this industry, it is very valuable to be able to talk to people that have been a member for many years, and seeing that DPHA is also focused on the younger generation opens up a great opportunity to exchange thoughts and bring in fresh ideas.
Connections: What is the biggest challenge you have faced in our industry?
Katharina: California. The amount of codes and standards our products have to comply with, not just on a national level but also by state, can make it challenging for manufacturers, not just from a functionality standpoint but also financially.
Connections: What do you enjoy about being in this industry?
Katharina: I have always had a passion for beautiful homes and working for a luxury plumbing manufacturer who is involved with the art and design community has allowed me to be creative and share my ideas. Helping a client specify a bathroom and sharing their excitement about a product that is not just a functional everyday item, but a design statement is very rewarding.
Connections: Anything else you would like to add?
Katharina: Thank you so much for this nomination!