...from Győr to the world

Audi employees in the world – from the city of rivers to the Italian boot

2024. 04. 29.

"I've always wanted to experience what it's like to work abroad and the challenges it brings. In addition, the Lamborghini name was also an attractive factor.
I think many vehicle engineers dream of working for a top-tier supercar manufacturer, and so did I.”

Kristóf Tiszamarti, who started his career at Audi in 2015 as a trainee in the V6 TDI Quality Assurance department, came from Nyírábrány, a border village near Debrecen, to the Audi Hungaria Faculty of Automotive Engineering at Széchenyi István University in Győr. A joint project work with Lamborghini starting in 2020 has given him the opportunity to expand his professional experience with a 2-year assignment to Italy from 2023. Below, read about Kristóf's experiences.
Tell us about your role at Audi Hungaria to date.

Kristóf Tiszamarti: I was already assigned as a trainee to components sub-activities, but I started my engineering career in the former V8/V10/R5 series quality assurance, where I was responsible for the components of all the high-performance engines and my tasks included troubleshooting and supplier development.

Later, I was involved in cross-segment quality improvement projects, and in 2020, we embarked on something even bigger, unknown to almost everyone at the time, which gave me the opportunity to work on a project with Lamborghini.

The aim of the project was the product approval and pre-series qualification of the V12 engine of Revuelto, Lamborghini's top model, which was developed and produced in-house and is now in series production, and it had to be carried out by the teams of Produkttechnik and the laboratory/measurement chamber in Győr. Together with a colleague from Sant'Agata, Silvio Biasi, we became the technical coordinators of the project from the two sides.

My main task was to manage the project work, so I had to ensure communication and the distribution of tasks between Győr and Sant’Agata. This required a completely new perspective and new processes, as neither party had done this kind of collaboration before.


When did the possibility of a mission abroad arise and why did you decide to do it, what attracted you to it?

Kristóf Tiszamarti: Over time, the project work was extended to include a next engine designed by Lamborghini, which is currently in progress. In 2023, we successfully completed the V12 product approval process and in the meantime, orders from Lamborghini continued to grow and we were already thinking at the beginning of the year about how we could take this successful collaboration forward in a way that fits in with Silvio's and my own career goals.

As we both wanted to participate in a mission abroad and had good relations with the other departments, we basically came up with an exchange program. With the support of our managers and HR, a negotiation process began, after which I was able to sign the new contract in the summer, and in September I moved and suddenly found myself in Italy.

I've always wanted to know what it's like to work abroad and what challenges and experiences it brings. In addition, the Lamborghini name was also an attractive factor. I think many vehicle engineers dream of working for a top-tier supercar manufacturer, and so did I.

What are your daily tasks now?

Kristóf Tiszamarti: I've basically taken over Silvio's responsibilities, so I'm now in charge of quality for the Revuelto V12 engine. The structure is a bit different here than in Győr, so I am responsible for all engine parts in both pre-series and series production.

My main tasks in the pre-series production include implementing quality improvement changes, optimizing products and processes with suppliers, and managing product approvals for subsequent model variants. In series production, I am responsible for eliminating critical defects and complaints, and subsequently developing and approving the appropriate corrective actions with suppliers.


What is your relationship like with your colleagues in Italy?

Kristóf Tiszamarti: Fortunately, we have a very good relationship, I knew some of them from before, so it wasn't completely a new situation. Most of the team are young, energetic and friendly people of my age, they are very welcoming and we also meet outside of work. For example, we've gone wall climbing together, but we’ve also went to the gym, and of course sometimes we meet for an aperitivo or pizza.

What do you see as the main difference between the Italian and Hungarian workplace culture?

Kristóf Tiszamarti: The first thing I noticed was that the workdays are longer. It's not uncommon here for colleagues to be in the office until 6:00–7:00 PM, but of course they also start a bit later, between 8:00–9:00 AM.

I feel that human relations play a bigger role at work here than at home. To get on with things, it's good to have a good relationship with the different departments and to know exactly who to contact with a particular question.

This is important because there is more emphasis on hierarchy, which is a bit unusual at first, but it makes the roles more transparent. As it is a small company compared to Audi, the distribution of responsibilities is completely different, and the responsibilities of the employees are more varied, which also takes some getting used to.

What I really like here is that the lunch and coffee break is a real social event, the team always goes out for lunch together and there's no work talk. We sort of "check out" during lunch and thus the atmosphere is very good.


Who do you live with in Italy and how do you spend your free time?

Kristóf Tiszamarti: My wife has also moved here with me, so luckily we can rely on each other, which is a big plus.

While I was living on my own, I explored the mountains around Bologna, where there are plenty of opportunities for sports and hiking. Bologna's famous basilica of San Luca is also here, on a hilltop near the city center.
There is also plenty to see and do in the area. We went to Parma to taste ham and cheese, visited the Ferrari museum in Maranello to see what the competition can do, and also visited Ravenna, a city famous for its churches with mosaics.

Skiing is a must in Italy in winter, so we also testedseveral slopes. It's a completely new sport for me, as I've only been snowboarding since last year.

In the summer of 2023, we also had the pleasure of experiencing the movie-like Tuscan wedding of a colleague.


What do you miss most about home? How often do you visit home?

Kristóf Tiszamarti: I like the metropolitan environment, so I didn't think I would miss the tranquility and orderliness of Győr, but I do feel a bit homesick.

What I miss the most is my friends and family and sharing my experiences with them.

As I am a big eater and I love to cook, sometimes I could go crazy for a good cottage cheese pasta, a beef stew or a Hungarian sausage, but unfortunately there are only a few Hungarian ingredients available here.

We manage to visit home every two or three months. There is always a holiday or a long weekend that we can use for this. But in the spring and summer we will be more into hiking and traveling.


What do you think are the personal/professional qualities that are essential for someone to succeed in a foreign assignment?

Kristóf Tiszamarti: I think you have to be open to and understanding of foreign cultures. You have to accept that not all your working methods or communication habits will be effective in the new environment, as colleagues think differently. Therefore, adaptability is also essential, you need to adapt to the needs, working style and communication here. Once you have these, you'll be able to apply the technical approach and knowledge you have.

Once you have figured out how to apply this knowledge, the next important skill is the ability to prioritize. There is no downtime here, so you have to pick the most urgent task from among a hundred important topics, or delegate tasks that can be done by the supporting departments.

In conclusion, be open to change, manage your colleagues and topics consistently and apply the German, analytical mindset to problem solving.

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