Katharina Jünger, CEO of the Munich startup Teleclinic, talks about her role models (Richard Branson and her mother!) and if she has been underestimated as a founder. Certainly not by investors: Katharina Jünger recently collected 7 million euros in her Series A round of financing for her health startup. Both with her company and when out hiking, she keeps on going until her goal — or the summit — have been reached.
Katharina, what motivated you to found a company?
I’ve always wanted to make a contribution that is a real improvement for individuals and society as a whole And that’s exactly the driving force behind Teleclinic: By linking doctors and patients, a patient has faster and easier access to a real doctor. Doctors are then able to offer their expertise more flexibly and with a better work-family balance. For society as a whole, telemedicine will allow us to increase the quality of care and also reduce costs.
Did you have role models when starting the company?
For me personally, my mother is a role model as a doctor and entrepreneur who is still passionate about her work to this day. She showed me how fulfilling entrepreneurial work can be.
Moreover, Richard Branson and Warren Buffet are also role models for me because they never stop following their passions. At the same time, to me they still seem sincere, humble and enthusiastic despite their success.
While climbing to the summit of a mountain.
What’s your biggest talent?
Identifying relevant goals and putting up a resolute fight until they’re reached.
From lone fighter to team player
What’s the biggest mistake you’ve ever made?
I used to be more of a lone fighter and underestimated how powerful teamwork can be. And that’s true even when it seems like it’s not quite as efficient as working alone.
What’s your secret networking weapon?
Having a real interest in people and the subjects that are meaningful to them.
Was being a female founder an advantage or disadvantage for you?
Being a female founder has its advantages and disadvantages. One advantage is receiving recognition faster, for example in the press, due the fact that there are relatively few female founders.
A disadvantage, in contrast, is that there are still a lot of men — whether they are customers, investors or employees — who consider women less capable than men and are therefore not as open to working with me as a woman.
What are the three most offensive prejudices you’ve encountered in everyday startup life?
I personally have experienced relatively little prejudice. But perhaps I’m just not that sensitive to those types of things. One topic that particularly comes up with customers in the more conservative health and insurance industry is: They think you don’t have to earn money as a startup since you already have investors. That, of course, is absolutely incorrect and harmful.
What’s on top of your desk at the moment?
Definitely recruiting. We’re looking for young and motivated talent in many fields, such as tech and IT.
What have you always wanted to say to Munich residents?
I’m not an original Munich native, so I can only confirm that Munich really is one of the most beautiful cities! The city and its surroundings have such a high quality of living to offer.