About an automotive professor who prefers to ride his bike

19. July 2022

A conversation about quality of life, status symbols and urban population trends

Today’s interview for Satellite Office surprises and quickly breaks away from all the prepared questions. I thought we were talking about fleet management, cost optimization and company car arrangements. But we only talked about that in passing. Rather, we talked about quality of life through mobility, status symbols that no longer exist, and urban population trends. But one after the other.

Dr. Roland Vogt is a professor at the University of Applied Sciences for Economics and Management in Munich (FOM). After studying mechanical and automotive engineering in Munich, Vogt completed an MBA before earning his doctorate at the University of Plymouth. He gained professional experience as head of strategic organization at Tüv Süd Auto Service GmbH and as managing director at FleetCompany GmbH, among others. Parallel to teaching at the FOM, the Munich native and specialist for fleet and mobility management works as a consultant for the Dr. Roland Vogt zegemo Center for Business Mobility and as managing director of the management consultancy fleetcompetence Deutschland GmbH.

Professor Roland Vogt has his office at Satellite Office in Munich. In the lovingly restored, historic Alte Hopfenpost, directly on Rundfunkplatz, right next to the main train station. With bicycle parking and underground parking. An ideal location for the professor. Because networked mobility is his theme: car sharing, private car, company car, bike, train, plane, streetcar. “There is a huge change in our mobility behavior right now. Companies are also asking themselves what future mobility will look like. The trend is toward increasing the degree of utilization and thus the cost-effectiveness of existing vehicles. For example, through shared company cars,” reports Vogt. During the day, a wide variety of trips are made for the company. In the evening, employees can drive the car privately for a fee. More and more means of transportation are also being networked for business travel planning: Take the train from Munich to Frankfurt, hop on your bike at the main station, and head to your first appointment. Then hop in a car-sharing car and drive to your next appointment. Then back to the station, park the car and get back on the train. “I am currently testing different apps that not only allow booking of different vehicles in one application but also billing. This is a big step” says the professor.

Professor Vogt himself lives networked mobility: He rides his bike to work at least three times a week. Its driving distance to Munich City is more than an hour. “Riding a bike is a piece of quality of life for me. In any weather. But afterwards I want to shower sensibly and freshen up for my appointments. That’s why the showers at the Satellite Office were a decisive criterion,” says the passionate cyclist. Even during his studies, the current vehicle technology engineer relied on the bicycle. “Often I didn’t have a car at all. And not only for financial reasons”. There are simply hardly any parking spaces in large cities, he said, and downtown traffic is time-consuming. Even among today’s students, hardly any would come by car. “For the urban population today, a car is also no longer a status symbol” reports Professor Vogt. It’s more about time and economic viability. And about comfortable travel. For example, he travels from Munich to Frankfurt by train, because that is more pleasant and faster than the plane, while he prefers to fly from Munich to Leipzig, because this is rather inconvenient for him by train.
Professor Vogt takes great pleasure in his chair at FOM Munich. “After twenty years in various managing director positions in large and smaller companies, I’m delighted to be able to pass on my practical experience. And – due entirely to modern mobility – the FOM is also within walking distance of his office at Satellite Office in the Alte Hopfenpost. For his management consultancy, however, the good address is also important. “It’s a reputation where and also how you receive your customers. Everything here at Satellite Office is nicely done. I like to book the meeting rooms or sit with clients and students in the cafeteria.” The atmosphere there is very pleasant, he says.

If Professor Vogt were a car, which one would he be? is my last question. He thinks about it for a moment and lists: flexible, strong, with high legs, and it has to have a bike rack for trips into the countryside. In addition, it should cover various needs, be a convertible when the sun is shining, offer plenty of space when going on vacation, and be a small, maneuverable car for the city. “A Volvo, Elekro, SUV, convertible would be me!” Unfortunately, this car does not yet exist, but Professor Vogt is certainly not the only one waiting for such a vehicle!

Thank you very much for the exciting interview!

The interview was conducted by Annette Kissing for Satellite Office.