Conrad Günther, Managing Director of the ICV

Who doesn't know him in the German-speaking controlling community? Conrad Günther is an institution here, thanks to his personality and the leadership roles that he plays. You have certainly already come in contact with him, perhaps at a seminar of the CA Controller Academy, at the Congress of Controllers in Munich, at a conference of the International Controller Association (ICV) or at a meeting of the International Group of Controlling (IGC). But you can also meet the 53-year-old as a cello player at a concert, as a dad-coach at a sporting or school event of one of his three children, and sometimes even on a safari in South Africa or during a holiday in Florida.

The thoughtful diplomat

You will notice that he never seeks the spotlight. He speaks thoughtfully and clearly, and when necessary, he expresses what has to be said with great diplomatic skill. He organises with great care and experience, always pulling the strings quietly in the background but firmly in control. Conrad Günther is a Board Member of the CA Controller Academy AG, Managing Director of the International Controller Association (ICV) and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Verlag für ControllingWissen AG (VCW), where Controller Magazine appears, which also serves as the official publication of the International Controller Association.

Managing Director since 1990

When Conrad Günther became Managing Director in 1990, he welcomed the Association's 1,000th member. In the meantime, the fact that the ICV today has over 6,500 members and more than 80 regional expert and sector work groups in 16 European countries is the result of his successful track record as the Association's Managing Director and as a team player. Anyone who has worked with him knows that his fundamental approach to all of his professional responsibilities is based on one aspect of the CA Controller Academy's Mission Statement: namely that “we want to make controllers happy.” With that in mind, he has worked tirelessly for over the last 20 years, objectively and discreetly, but extremely effectively, to help controllers help themselves.

Fine work on the image of the controller

Günther works rigorously to contribute to the dissemination of the controlling philosophy of the profession's pioneers - most notably that of Dr Albrecht Deyhle. This philosophy has been shaped from the outset by the image of the controller as a business partner, which is how controllers are seen today, not only in the ICV and the IGC but also by a growing number of leading controlling institutions and companies. Even though this has meant that the perception of the controller profession has changed in the eyes of the public and in companies, and that the number of controllers who meet this ambition has grown significantly, Conrad Günther reminds controllers to stay down to earth: controllers must always keep in mind their role as a voice of rationality, even as a business partner of management.

Peas instead of apples and pears

Recently, he said in an interview that “it is absolutely necessary that future controllers take on and live the role of a business partner, which includes growing involvement in strategic decisions. At the same time, I also believe that controllers must continue to take responsibility in the future for designing the systems that count the beans.  Otherwise, it might happen that beans don't get counted, but rather apples will be compared with oranges.” – A statement which could not be a better description of Conrad Günther, a controlling institution.

December 2012 / Source: ICV Bulletin, Author: Hans-Peter Sander, ICV Media Officer