EARLY BUSINESS CAREER
After his return from the United States where he studied finance and economics at the Wharton School of Business, Tom Oliver supported his father Erhart Kirfel in leaving behind his career as a manager in the IT industry to start his own management consulting business.
With Oliver's support the company quickly rose to meteoric success in Germany with clients coming mainly from the public sector. In fact, the management consulting company became so successful that Erhart Kirfel 1 was appointed Chairman of the Board of the Public Administration Section of the Association of German Consulting Companies, which was the highest honour that could be bestowed upon a management consultant active in the public sector. He was re-elected several times, holding this position for over a decade. Other accomplishments and awards followed, including that of Certified Management Consultant (CMC) awarded by the International Council of Management Consulting Institutes, which only a limited number of German management consultants have ever received.
As the SPD party is also one of the biggest media conglomerates in Germany, with a wide range of investments and activities, the responsibilities of Oliver and Kirfel’s consulting company included areas as diverse as finance, financial control, real estate, investments, HR, complete financial control of the SPD German general election campaigns, and the organisation of gatherings of heads of state of the G8.2 3
Tom Oliver’s role as a personal advisor to his father and as a senior management consultant interacting with the company's clients was a major success factor in the rapid rise of the company and its success with prominent clients.