Today DVN pays homage to Salomon Berner and his achievements during 15 years’ work at DVN.
Interview: Salomon on his life at DVN
DVN: You were at DVN since the beginning—nearly 15 years. Will you share your perspective?
Salomon Berner: I’m amazed by the size, the footprint, and quality of the DVN lighting community we have built since we started 15 years ago. When I say we, I sincerely mean the whole DVN team; it’s impossible for me to separate out the impact of my own contribution on DVN achievements. Ask our DVN community members; they might have a better answer than myself, but I’m pleased to imagine I contributed to give the DVN team a friendly, reactive, and human face, especially during these pandemic times.
DVN: What has the pandemic changed in your day-to-day life and work at DVN?
Salomon Berner: Of course, this unusual Covid-19 situation has restricted, like for all of us, my possibilities to meet my relatives and friends. Unexpectedly, it also gave me the unique opportunity to create for DVN this new online platform for our DVN workshops which helped in keeping our global lighting community in touch with one another, despite all the traveling restrictions. And as our DVN workshops became first virtual then hybrid events, it meant simultaneously taking care and organising two events in one—in person and online. Some speakers needed to be pre-recorded or to present through Zoom from remote locations, sometimes with a 6- or 7-hour time lag between Europe and Asia or North America, and you get a feeling of the hurdles and excitement I went through with my team. But the result was worth it!
DVN: What is your advice to your vehicle lighting colleagues?
Salomon Berner: Each problem you will be faced with is an opportunity to learn. Problems are to be considered as doors which open new horizons. These are exciting times when you consider each challenge as a new opportunity.
DVN: What will you do now after working 12 hours per day and almost 7 days by week?
Salomon Berner : I have never been working at DVN! Don’t forget I really retired from my professional career 15 years ago when I was 63 years old. When I joined DVN, it was just for getting my thrills by embarking on this new adventure. I could not guess that thrill would last 15 years! As you know, I enjoy nothing more than learning and discovering new fields. I can already see plenty of new opportunities to learn which will keep me busy as long as I will enjoy learning.
DVN Colleagues on Salomon Berner
Carine Abouaf, DVN marketing director
I thought I would know my dad even better if I worked with him, but in the end, I realise he is exactly the same person at work and at home when I was a child: Best coach ever, results-driven, very outgoing and generous, and he is always the first when it comes to having a good meal!
Jean-Claude Lebrun, DVN President
I have really enjoyed working with Salomon; what I appreciated and what I admire about him is his patience, his listening, always friendly and helpful, his ability to analyze situations. and send us a message of caution when necessary or also optimize, an unusual feeling for Solomon.
Philippe Aumont, director of DVN Interior
When thinking about Salomon, three words pop up: experience, kindness, and wisdom. He is a great strategic thinker, while being able to deal with every administrative detail. He was incredibly supportive when I joined DVN; I’ll never thank him enough for that. We’ll miss you, Salomon!
Wolfgang Huhn, DVN senior advisor
Salomon, you always kept the big picture in mind. In our sometimes magnificently emotional discussions you brought us back to the point. We all counted on your timing and your schedules, like it was the most natural thing to do. In your calm and friendly manner, you guided the whole DVN team to meet our goals. Salomon, have a great time full of health and happiness in the most beautiful city of the world or wherever you are!
Geoff Draper, DVN senior advisor on regulations
When I started working with DVN I quickly realised that Salomon is a Wise Old Owl. This is not making any comment about Salomon’s age or physical features, but to recognise his quiet analysis of situations, the wisdom of his judgements, and his friendly advice that I have greatly appreciated over the past twelve years.
Daniel Stern, DVN chief editor
Salomon’s thoughtfully-applied expertise has made DVN run smoothly and efficiently since the very beginning. In a complex, fast-paced operation like DVN, Salomon’s calm competence always quickly turned questions, conundrums, and even the occasional crisis into no problem. Even more than that, I have been inspired by his calm and friendly approachability. I will miss his wise counsel, and wish him every joy!
Jean-Paul Ravier, DVN technical consultant
We were so accustomed to count on your science of the organisation, alloying rigour and kindness, we were so pleased to meet you regularly always with your great friendliness and empathetic smile, you have done such a great job with Hector to create and develop DVN that we had the illusion that everything could continue eternally. Now it is time for a well-deserved rest that we wish very happy, but you will be sorely missed.
Ralf Schäfer, DVN technical consultant
I always appreciated when your input shed light on topics from another point of view. Your broad experience in other industries and as a coach strongly enriched our sometimes heated discussions and brainstorms. You took care not to lose the goal out of sight. As an extra important element, I enjoyed the lunch breaks with you and other DVN colleagues very much because of the amicable atmosphere which naturally appeared at the table. Enjoy your retirement!
Leo Metzemaekers, DVN technical consultant
It is sad for me to see you retiring at DVN, I will miss you. You were the oil in the DVN engine, you brought us back together when discussions were getting difficult, we could always rely on you. During the many workshops you talked to all of the companies and made them feel at home in the large DVN community. Enjoy your retirement and life after DVN. Au Revoir!
Carsten Befelein, DVN Interior technical consultant
I will miss Salomon very much! Salomon has always held the DVN community together and promoted it with his calm, considered and fatherly manner. I haven’t told Salomon yet, but he has become a very good friend to me. I therefore wish Salomon all, all the best and much health and joy in life. I hope we will always stay in touch!
Geoffrey Lebrun, DVN Communication/Events
His ability to analyze and share have made him a key person in the successful development of DVN. I am sure that the teams that you have guided for so long will live up to your ambitions. I wish you to enjoy your new adventure which awaits you, it is not sure that it will be so much more relaxing than your professional life has been.
Christophe Lameiras, DVN sales administrator
Thank you for training me for this position. I will do my best to help DVN reach its goals and do as well as you did during these last years. Thanks for the motivation and encouragement! I wish you the best Salomon and take care of yourself.
Ann Ai, DVN China
Salomon is like a nice encyclopedia for us, he knows everything about lighting community, and most importantly, his great passion at work inspires us.
Eve Taberna, DVN document layout
After several years of collaboration with Salomon, I salute, among all its many qualities, his formidable efficiency!
A selection of DVN Gold members’ feedback after Salomon’s retirement announcement:
– So you have decided to go in real retirement. It is well earned, after the many years that you were instrumental in building the DVN community.
– I will keep good memories about you: your fine and well organised communication, your know-how, your professionalism, your personality.
– You had influenced my business at many crucial points, your experience and human attitude influenced me. I hope to stay in touch.
– It was so nice to work with you.
– I very appreciate your supporting in the past.
– Thank you so much for all these years guiding us through the DVN events.
– I appreciate all of your hard work and help within the DVN community
– I wish that you may enjoy a long well-deserved retirement period, in harmony with yourself and your loved ones.
– Thank you for all your great support! It was always a pleasure to connect to such a helpful person and gentle personality as you are! Wishing you indeed a well-earned and wonderful retirement.All the best!
– It will be different without you at DVN. I have a deepl respect for your contribution to the family called DVN.
I wish you all the best and many healthy years to come.
Salomon at the DVN Workshops
Salomon, DVN’s great success could not have been possible without you. The vehicle lighting community, Driving Vision News, and everyone involved all thank you heartily!