Jan Pautsch


Angestellt, Director - Kooku X, Kooku Recruiting Partners Berlin

Berlin, Germany

About me

I am a Berlin-based headhunter specialising in product, design and digital transformation. A trusted talent partner who can future-proof your career or your business. My mission is to design genuine personal relationships in an ever-changing technology and transaction-driven recruitment landscape. Putting the "human" back in "human capital". With many years of experience as a design executive in the digital industry, I understand my partners' hiring needs and provide them with access to the right talent that will transform their business. Committed to using innovative and data-driven methods to improve recruitment, I currently lead the executive search practice at Kooku Recruiting Partners. Prior to joining Kooku, I ran Cogs Berlin. Cogs is a global specialist talent consultancy in the product, design and transformation space with offices in London, Hong Kong, Singapore, Shenzhen, Tokyo and Berlin.


Talent Acquisition
Talent Strategy
Lean Leadership
Full Cycle Recruitment
Contingent Recruitment
Retained Recruitment
Part-Retained Recruitment
Executive Search
Talent Management
Human Resources
Employer Branding
New Business Development
Team Leadership
Organizational Design
Organizational Development
Systemic Business Coaching
Digital Business


Professional experience for Jan Pautsch

  • Current 1 year and 9 months, since Jan 2021

    Director - Kooku X

    Kooku Recruiting Partners Berlin

    Committed to using innovative and data-driven methods to improve recruitment, I currently lead the executive search practice at Kooku Recruiting Partners Berlin - a Recruiting Startup with a focus on HR consulting, interim recruiting and recruitment process outsourcing (RPO). I combine network-based headhunting with data-driven recruiting and holistic process consulting - supporting Kooku's vision: To help companies achieve healthy growth.

  • 1 year and 11 months, Feb 2019 - Dec 2020

    Director - Germany

    Cogs Agency

    Management of Cogs Berlin. Cogs is a global specialist talent consultancy in the product, design and transformation space with offices in London, Hong Kong, Singapore, Shenzhen, Tokyo and Berlin. P&L responsibility, Senior/Executive Searches, BD & Operations, mentored a team with 4 direct reports. Acquired global clients incl: 2 of Top 3 global Management Consultancies, Innovation Labs, Top 3 German Brand Design Consultancies, Digital Agencies, SMEs, MNCs.

  • 2 years and 9 months, May 2016 - Jan 2019

    Associate Director Experience Design

    Cogs Agency

    Driving Cogs Berlin‘s change from a Digital Recruiting Agency to a Transformational Talent Consultancy. Key responsibilities: Lean Leadership, Talent Strategy, Senior/Executive Searches, BD, P&L Collectively managing a team of 7 consultants across three desks. Leading the design practice for Cogs / global knowledge transfer between studios. Leading the office on a stable growth path from 4 to 9 staff. Double of revenue within 3 years.

  • 5 months, Dec 2015 - Apr 2016

    Head of Design

    Cogs Agency

    I have managed and built a strong and successful design desk with a focus on global Senior-, Lead-, Director- and Executive searches in the fields of Strategic-, Business- and Experience-Design. Examples of placements I have made: Business Design Director, Executive Creative Director, Head of UX, Senior Product Designer, Senior Strategic Designer. Building and mentoring a team of talent-consultants.

  • 9 months, Mar 2015 - Nov 2015

    Experience Design Strategist {Freelance}

    Jan Pautsch

    Freelance Experience Design Strategy and Creative Direction. Agencies/Clients e.g.: GUD.berlin: BVG, TLGG, Code Week Award.

  • 1 year and 2 months, Jan 2014 - Feb 2015

    Executive Creative Director

    Aperto - An IBM Company

    Member of the Board. Responsible for Aperto Berlin's Creative Product. Clients/Brands: Migros, Volkswagen AG, MAN. Responsibility for 35+ Staff of UX/UI Designers. Responsibilities: New Biz. Leading Product Design Teams responsible for end-to-end Product Delivery. Creative Direction/Implementation. Team Building/Knowledge Management. Creative Lead: Pitch for Volkswagens CIM Catalogue. Successful Pitch/Development for the Volkswagen Corporate Platform. Relaunch of the Migros Web Estate.

  • 2 years and 3 months, Oct 2011 - Dec 2013

    Design Director, Business Unit Director

    Aperto - An IBM Company

    CD / Unit Lead. Clients/Brands: Abu Dhabi Media, Alphabet, Continental, MAN, TUI, Volkswagen. Responsibility for 15+ Staff. Digital Creative Lead supporting GREENKERN in their Pitch to be Lead Agency for Volkswagen's WRC Campaign, responsible for the Development of the Digital Platform. Led the successful Pitch for MAN's Global Digital Lead Agency. Creative Lead supporting Aperto ME to acquire Abu Dhabi Media as a new Account. Responsible for the new Volkswagen Corporate Digital Styleguide.

  • 7 months, Mar 2011 - Sep 2011

    Design Director, Business Unit Director

    Scholz & Friends

    Member Management Board, Business Unit Lead. Creative Direction for Integrated Campaigns. Clients/Brands: Zentralverband des Deutschen Handwerks {German Confederation of Skilled Crafts} / STIHL / Media-Saturn Group: Saturn / Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. With Managerial Responsibility for 25 Staff. Contribution to the successful Pitch for Saturn's Multichannel Strategy 2012.

  • 5 years and 4 months, Nov 2005 - Feb 2011

    Design Director

    argonauten G2

    Member Creative Board. CD for Digital Branding/Campaigns: Allianz / Beiersdorf / Coca-Cola / Deutsche Bahn / GROHE / Pernod Ricard / P&G / Berlin Philharmonics / Volkswagen. Managerial Responsibility: 12+ Staff. Responsible for the Global Digital Design Framework for Volkswagen {Design 4.0}. Successful Pitches: GROHE, La Prairie, VW IAA, Allianz Group, VW Global Design Framework, Global Coca-Cola World Cup Campaign, Rolling Stone Germany.

  • 2 years and 5 months, Jun 2003 - Oct 2005

    Visual Designer

    Zum goldenen Hirschen

    Art Direction. Clients: Bundespresseamt {PR Office of the German Federal Governement}, Die Grünen/Bündnis 90 {German Green Party}.

  • 3 years and 5 months, Jan 2000 - May 2003

    Visual Designer {Freelance}

    Jan Pautsch

    Freelance Art Direction, Agencies: I-D Media AG, HereToGo Environment, evolution-one, Disco 3000 / Clients: Lowe Communication Group, T-Com, Toshiba, Herbert Grönemeyer {Grönland Records}, Martini.

  • 3 years, Jan 1997 - Dec 1999

    Visual Artist {Freelance}

    Jan Pautsch

    Multimedia Installations and Spatial Works. My Work has been showcased and featured in Art Spaces such as Eight Floor New York, Art Forum Berlin, BACKJUMPS, dirty windows, Glue, sin, S.S.K. as well as in international Art and Design Publications and Online Mags such as ArtSchoolVets!, Computerlove, IdN, Netdiver, Reform & Revolution, TASCHEN and The FWA.

  • Lecturer Media Design

    Beuth Hochschule / Mediadesign University / Stuttgart Media University

    Lecturer Media Design at Beuth Hochschule für Technik Berlin, University of Applied Sciences. Seminars on Webtrends and global Multi-Channel Campaigns. Lectures at Mediadesign University {Berlin} and Stuttgart Media University.

  • Member of the Jury

    International Digital Juries incl. D&AD, LIA, The Lovies, The Webbies

    I am a regular Member of international Digital Juries, including D&AD, LIA Awards, TheCup, Golden Drum, The Lovie Awards, The Webby Awards and The Singapore CCA.

Educational background for Jan Pautsch

  • 4 months, Dec 2016 - Mar 2017

    Business Coaching

    Hochschule Wismar, University of Technology, Business and Design

    Business Coaching Fundament, Leadership and Self-Awareness, Tools and Techniques to initiate Change, Group Coaching Approaches.

  • 1 year, Jan 2000 - Dec 2000

    Digital Design

    L4 - Multimedia Academy, Berlin

  • 1 year, Jan 1996 - Dec 1996

    Master Degree Course Fine Arts

    New York University, N.Y.

    The NYU Scholarship was offered by The DAAD - German Academic Exchange Service.

  • 1 year, Jan 1992 - Dec 1992

    Bachelor Degree Course Illustration

    Camberwell College of Arts {The London Institute}

    The ual Scholarship was offered by the Southwark Council, London.

  • 6 years and 4 months, Sep 1989 - Dec 1995

    Visual Communication

    Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weißensee, School of Art


  • German

    First language

  • English



Lead Product Designer / Venture Builder / Berlin
Senior UI-Designer / UX-Design Beratung / Standort flexibel
Senior UX-Designer / Digital Agency / Berlin
Director Experience Design / Digital Agency / Berlin
Principal Consultant - Consultancy / fully remote
Head of Client Services / Digital Agency / Berlin
Senior Concept Consultant / Creative Agency / Berlin
VP of Product Design / B2B SAAS Startup


Organizational Design
New Work
Design Operations
Lean Leadership

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