Mark Heather (Foto rechts) steht mit seinem „MHC Business Language Training“ für Kommunikations-Trainings und Sprach-Trainings. So weit die Oberfläche.
Heute blicken wir unter diese Oberfläche: wer ist Mark, weshalb verschlug es ihn (Brite) und seine Frau (Slovakin) ausgerechnet nach Wien und was würde er – wenn er die freie Wahl hätte – am liebsten an seinem beruflichen Leben ändern?
What is the most fun for you in your job?
The most rewarding times are when I notice course participants nodding their heads to signal they just had an ‘aha’ moment. As training relies so much on communication itself, I am always searching for more effective ways to get the message across. Learners can then grasp new powerful concepts more quickly and are confident enough to leave their comfort zone and try new things. Sometimes they even look excited, and you can tell they want to go out and try them as quickly as possible. It makes me proud when students contact me afterwards to say they did something they learned with us and what a difference it made.
I also enjoy the challenge of leading large international projects, training large numbers of participants. Busy times require that everyone in the company supports each other, which brings us closer as a team. That is exciting and builds trust, understanding and respect for each other’s qualities and recognition of what they bring to the table. A little stress is always good because it makes the successes taste even sweeter!
Why did you choose Vienna for settling?
I met my Slovak wife, Mariana, in Berlin in 1999. She was studying pedagogy with a focus on German and Slavic studies at Humbold University. I had studied management back in the UK and was studying psychology at the time. We were also in the unique situation that we communicated together in our second language, German. With our knowledge and experience, we knew that we wanted to work together in this field, but we were still unsure where. We loved our time in Berlin, but we were ready for a fresh challenge and new experiences.
So we decided to move to Vienna together in 2002 and founded MHC Business Language Training in 2008. Shortly afterwards, we opened a second institute in Bratislava to serve our Slovak clients locally in Bratislava. We arrived with an open mind and excited to start! We quickly settled in, and almost 20 years later, living just south of the capital in Mödling, that feeling of Austria being our home has only grown stronger. It has so much to offer, and we couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. After the Brexit ‘Leave’ result, the desire to remain in the EU and mainland Europe was great. We couldn’t be happier here.
I have to admit that a lot of what I love about Austria, e.g., the mountains, the temperate climate and delicious local wine, the UK cannot compete. And the two things I miss most about England, Marmite and English tea, I can order online!
If you had the chance to change every little detail in your company or your tasks – which one wold be the most important / urgent / beautiful?
That is a difficult question to answer because of two reasons. Firstly, I always have a positive mindset because I tend to see problems or obstacles as opportunities. Secondly, I like to promote a can-do attitude with the belief that anyone has the power to change anything if they put their mind to it. That said, there is nothing I can think of right now that I wish I could change!
Mark Heather is owner and CEO at MHC Business Language Training, an institute based in Vienna and Bratislava. He is a communication and presentation skills trainer with an educational background in psychology and management. He gives courses and webinars to companies in Austria, the Diplomatic Academy and has previously lectured at the FH Wien. firstname.lastname@example.org I www.mhc-training.com