who we are

As experienced leaders and coaches, we put together the competencies you need for the development of your organisation on a flexible basis to provide the best possible benefit for your organisation and the employees and partners involved.


With more than 20 years of international management experience, Michael Schwarz successfully implements and guides complex organisational development processes as a convincing and motivating change leader and executive coach.

Michael Schwarz



Based on his 20+ years of international experience as convincing and motivating “change leader”, Michael Schwarz has the ability to successfully implement complex organisational development processes.
As a systemic organisational consultant and management coach, he is a much-appreciated partner in numerous companies; he has the courage of constructive criticism, but never loses his focus on offering solutions to the partner’s problem.
Michael Schwarz was privileged to advise the following corporations, among other: ABB, Akademie Deutscher Genossenschaften e.V., BMW, Bosch-Siemens-Hausgeräte, Coca-Cola, Coltene, Deutsche Bahn, Malik Management Zentrum St. Gallen, O2, R+V Versicherung, ratiopharm, Hoffmann La Roche, Tech Data, Teva Pharma, Thommen Medical, UBS, RWE, innogy, npower (UK), VR Leasing, Yello Strom

  • Mobilising and motivating 5 000 members of staff of a pan-European organisation, on all levels and in more than 20 countries, within the framework of business and organisational transformation
  • Global staff development leader for an organisation with a staff of 9 000: increased organisational agility through targeted improvement of staff job skills and development opportunities
  • Implementing the merger of business areas: re-orientation and alignment through strategy reviews, strategic workforce planning and development of effective communication channels
  • Optimisation of management and HR processes as Business Management leader and Chief of Staff
  • Design and implementation of global leadership development programmes for different companies – with fast results through personal coaching
  • Development support and optimisation of a decentralised sales organisation through support and coaching of the sales managers
  • Strengthening the management and advisory competency of personnel managers and internal advisors
  • Structuring and moderation of change processes, training of Change managers
    Implementation of global integrated training and development programmes


For more than 20 years, Christoph Mahr has been helping organisations and the people who work there to continually develop their skills. His mission is to create agile organisations that shape their future quickly, flexibly and proactively

Christoph Mahr



For more than 20 years, Christoph Mahr has been supporting organizations and coaching people who work in them to continuously develop. Creating agile organizations that are able to shape and develop their future proactively and allow people to excel is his mission.
As an organizational consultant and dedicated coach, he supports his clients in an authentic manner and with humor.  He supports people and organizations to build and develop profound change, agile and lean capabilities by unlocking and enlarging existing knowledge. Innovative, pragmatic and highly efficient learning concepts are part of his repertoire.
He supported and worked for the following corporations, among other: ABB, Allianz, BMW, Daimler, Deutsche Bahn, Berufsverband Deutsches Anästhesisten, Evangelische Landeskirche in Baden, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen, Hessischer Rundfunk, Hirschvogel, Hoffmann La Roche, Hugendubel, Malik Management Center St. Gallen, Merck, Pfizer, Schwäbisch Hall Bausparkasse, Vodafone, VR Leasing.

  • Introduction of a lean production system in a production and logistics network with 14,000 employees worldwide
  • Head of a European Learning & Development Organization for about 60,000 employees. Established an in-house consultancy ensuring sustainable transformation processes
  • Conducting numerous strategy development processes, supporting and implementing subsequent organizational and process improvements to create agile organizations
  • Design and implementation of global leadership development programs in various companies – high quality implementation and strong impact rate through personal coaching and emphasis on learning on the job approaches
  • Design and implementation of innovative project-related executive development programs


Andreas Heckel has more than 25 years of international management experience in both large corporations and SME. His focus is on growth and innovations to keep vendors relevant for their clients.



Andi worked for more than 25 years in different size organizations to help them grow and drive innovation mostly focused on digitalization, security and e-commerce. Grow and innovation needs to be supported by strong teams (with strong individuals) where team performance and willingness to win are key. Andi ensures that the program goes hand in hand with ideas of new way of working, drive efficiency and effectives and are embedded in the organization’s transformation and change program.

He demonstrated success as interim manager, team lead, consultant and coach and loves to work with go-to-market, innovation and sales teams. Over the last years he was working for the following companies / clients: ABB, UniCredit, HypoVereinsbank, Oracle, Hewlett-Packard, DXC, DTI, Open Systems, Allianz, Eurofighter, HP, Deutsche Bank, BASF, BMW, Volkswagen, Landesbank Baden-Württemberg, Sparkassen Informatik, Panalpina, Dell EMC.

  • CEO of and digitalization company including merging of two organisations, streamlining portfolio and messaging as well as growing into a new market
  • Sales manager (Rockstar) driving multimillion security revenues, building sales strategies and managing large sales teams and sales pursuits to drive revenue and profit
  • Conducting numerous business reviews and risk analyses
  • Managing large scale PKI programs to support business transformation


Management Experts St. Gallen is a network of over 50 internationally experienced consultants, trainers and coaches. We share the intellectual foundation of the St. Gallen management understanding and collaborated jointly within the former malik management zentrum St. Gallen



We are part of the peppermind ecosystem and use the practical, experience-based and scalable learning programmes available there. In this way, we combine the human dimension with the value and performance dimension of an organisation



In our various roles and projects we have repeatedly met outstanding consultants and coaches with whom we are happy to continue working. Regardless of which of us may support you, you can rely on the quality.

I have been working with step 5 on many different projects and really appreciate their ability to master a wide range of leadership and transformation topics.

Katja Manuela Egger, Global Learning Partnering Partner (electrical industry)
Sebastian Schulte-Eickholt

The high level of personal competence, the empathy for our situation and the always goal-oriented approach were particularly convincing …

Sebastian Schulte-Eickholt, Chief Operating Officer, Head of Transformation innogy (Energy industry)
Vincenzo Grande

Working together has been a profound experience that has changed the way I think, how I work, how I perceive my environment, the way I look at my own actions.

Vincenzo Grande, Head of Strategic Planning & Business Development Thommen Medical (Medical industry)

The systematic learning and teaching approach of step 5 creates business-oriented learning experiences beyond standard leadership courses in a business-distant training laboratory.

Michael Zaugg Senior Vice President Human Resources YPSOMED AG (medical industry)

In addition to a common understanding of leadership in the organization, the managers were able to develop solutions for their current challenges and lead their employees more effectively.

Swen Koch, Personalleiter Possehl Electronics (manufacturing industry)

Their input has been tremendously helpful to support us focus on the right things, measure our progress and grow along the way.

Fabian Birzele, Head of Bioinformatics & Biostatistics (Pharmaceutical industry)

They convinced us not only with a structured methodical approach, but also with their social competence and great personal commitment. You made a significant contribution to the success of this complex merger project.

Stefan Helsing Chief Operating Officer Coltene (Medical industry)
Thorsten Schroeter

Each time, the reflection, the application of models and finally asking the right questions in an uncomplicated and people-centered approach helped us a lot. Thank you very much for your continued valuable support!

Thorsten Schroeter, ABB Switzerland (Industrial sector)