Insight from Germany

Summer trainee Mai-Lan Röllig

The secret of success is to understand the point of view of others. Come together is the beginning, stay together is a progress and work together is success.
Das Geheimnis des Erfolges ist, den Standpunkt des anderen zu verstehen.Zusammenkommen ist ein Beginn, zusammenbleiben ist ein Fortschritt, zusammenarbeiten ist ein Erfolg.
-Henry Ford-

Summer trainee Mai-Lan praises her work and colleagues at Pfungstadt

“Helpful colleagues, harmoniously atmosphere and challenging tasks,” sums up summer trainee Mai-Lan Röllig, 28, her experiences at Pfungstadt location in Germany.

Let Mai-Lan tell about her experiences:

“This summer I took the opportunity to complete my internship, a part of my study (Bachelor of Business Administration), at Metso Paper Pfungstadt in Germany. The goal of this course is to transfer the theory of studying, in the practice and of course to collect new practical experience in a company that is acting worldwide.

Particularly important for me in terms of my specialization in the study, are the areas of HR and Controlling.

…to put it in a nutshell, the value of a company depends on its employees and their performance.”

Collegial, friendly and helpful atmosphere

“My superiors at the workplace are Doris Fischer (HR) and Frank Merl (Controlling). I can learn and support them in their daily work.

Pfungstadt has round about 70 employees, which are employed for different areas of Metso Paper. My first impression in the service center was impressive – the very collegial, friendly and helpful atmosphere and the interaction among the employees conspicuous me directly positive.

“My reaction to the Metso philosophy, which includes an employee oriented engagement next to other principles, was very positive. Especially when I noticed that this principle of management would transfer into the practice. Here it is clear that through an extraordinary commitment from Metso, the employee satisfaction is a significant amount of success.

I learned that this employee satisfaction is supported by the different areas of Human Resources (development, care, management, planning) as well as a positive corporate culture.

Particularly in relation to me, I can work every day with friendly and helpful colleagues, who are also willing to share their knowledge with me. In addition my work contents are interesting, challenging and practice-oriented.

THANK YOU for this very useful experience that I could make at the internship.

Furthermore I would recommend each student which has to complete an internship, to choose Metso. The harmoniously atmosphere and the creation of a link with the theory of the study and practice of working life are only two reasons of my recommendation…the other advantages the new trainees have to find out by themselves.”

Mai-Lan Röllig

Internship at Metso Paper Pfungstadt (Germany) at the period of time 15.7.- 30.9.2013

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Out there and elsewhere: Qatar

Yesterday Anniina wrote us about her experiences from Ireland and China. I know working abroad is not probably as glamorous as I think it is, but I wouldn’t mind change my working location once in a while as Anniina have done. Based on her story, I think she doesn’t mind it either 🙂

Next in the line is Juha Kivelä who have been working in Qatar since the beginning of the summer. Qatar is located in a small Qatar peninsula in Persian Gulf sharing a border with Saudi Arabia. It has been said to be one of the richest countries in the world despite of it’s small size. So how Juha ended up there and why? Well, I will let him tell us more about it…

wold map qatar

Juha 

I started with Metso in March 2007, when I joined the Flow Control business line of Automation segment to do my Master’s Thesis for the Neles Smart Products department on Value Based Marketing. After the thesis, later in 2007, I first signed a temporary contract as a trainee and then after couple of months I was offered a position as a Business Analyst at the same department I had done my thesis for. In December 2008 I got then promoted to a Product Manager position in which I stayed until I moved here to Qatar at the end of May this year. I’m currently working as a Business Development Manager focusing on our Smart Products and I’m based in Doha, but still looking after the whole region. Here in Doha we are currently working together with a small 8 person team, our Middle Eastern ‘head office’ with more colleagues being located in Dubai. Besides Dubai and Doha, we have also an own office in Bahrain.

JuhaKivelä0218

One of the reasons I wanted to join Metso at first place were the international possibilities Metso offers for its employees as a global company. Since I joined the company I have actively shown my willingness to move abroad if a suitable opportunity comes across and now this spring the company’s needs and my own expectations then met and I got the opportunity to join our Middle Eastern sales and service team in a role where I can take advantage of what I have learned in my earlier positions working for the Product Line side of the business.

In my previous Product Manager role I had a global responsibility for the products I looked after for, so even if I have been based in Finland I have had the privilege to work together with our talented colleagues across the globe in a truly international working environment. Besides the Metso colleagues, I have also had chance to meet many of our customers in several different countries and continents. I had also made a few business trips to Middle East in the past, which made it easier to make the decision to move here since I was already somewhat familiar with the local working environment and culture and in addition knew many of the colleagues I was going to work with in advance… and what is maybe even bit more important, I was familiar with the local weather that can get quite hot during the summer months (when writing this, it is +42C outside and the humidity is expected to peak at 95% today).
So no culture shock’s so far in sight 😉

Qatar itself is an interesting country to work and live in, being a kind of a mixture of Western and Arabic worlds. It has rich natural resources that bring the country wealth that then again enables significant investments on developing the country. The population of the country is growing rapidly and especially the capital city of Doha is developing on a breathtaking pace. The current population of Qatar is about 2 million and it is expected to rise to 3 million by 2020. Endless amount of massive infrastructural projects are on-going or to be started, all aiming to have the city ‘ready’ for the 2022 Football World Cup that will be hosted by Qatar.

Qatar and the whole of Middle East is a market having a lot of growth potential also for us as a company, so I’m sure the challenging targets for the future will also bring along plenty of opportunities for the current and future employees of Metso. I’m myself currently here in Qatar on a 2+1 year contract, but the future will then tell how long I’m going to stay.

Juha

Out there and elsewhere: Ireland and China

Last week I started preparing today’s blog post. I contacted few people within Metso and luckily 3 of them got back to me and wrote a little summary regarding their experiences of working abroad. Actually we have a pretty cool group together here; Anniina Leppänen has been working with Metso in Ireland and China, Juha Kivelä is writing from Qatar and Juha Yli-Petäys tells about his 2 years working period in Brazil. It’s a nice coincident they have experiences from such different countries, which makes you realize how international company Metso really is and what kind of opportunities it can offer for its employees.

Because I love to read “real life” stories and it is great that these people arrange time to write their stories down, I decided to publish them one by one during the end of the week so all of them have their time in the limelight. So lets give the stage for the first one of the week and of course, ladies first!

irland_china

Anniina

I have been working in Metso for almost 8 years now. I started in Metso Mining and Constructions as an intern in 2005 and I moved to Metso Automation in 2008. I have always been interested in working abroad and travelling, in fact before I even joined Metso I had already lived abroad a few years. My managers always knew I was interested in opportunities of going abroad, learning more and having new challenges and in 2007 that opportunity arose when Metso Mining and Construction hired me to work as a Customer and service administrator for the Irish market in Dublin, Ireland. The country and the city was already very familiar place to me as I had been living there before for a couple of years.

I enjoyed my job in Ireland. I gained good insight of working at the customer end dealing with quarry and mining customers and learned a lot about the business and the products. While working in Metso in Ireland I guess the biggest culture shock for me was that my manager and service engineers were always on the road so I pretty much worked alone in the office. Another challenge was to learn the wear and spare parts and the related drawings as an order handler in a sales unit has to have good knowledge of supplied parts.

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Anniina in Shanghai

The second time I had an opportunity to move abroad came while working in Metso Automation GBI (Global Business Information) Project. We had just started a new ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) implementation in Shanghai when we were informed that we’d have an opportunity to move there for the duration of the project. I must say at first I had to think about it as I had never traveled to China before but once we started the implementation and had visited Shanghai couple of times it was clear I would move to Shanghai.

Working in China was enticing. The culture is so different but I did not have much culture shocks as I am used to travelling and living abroad and also because we were well informed of the cultural aspects as we took a Chinese culture course before visiting Shanghai the first time. Shanghai is a modern city and they call it the Paris of the east. Although it is very Western it certainly has a different atmosphere that I had been used to. Already the language aspect can cause some confusion as locals do not really speak English widely so the best way is to learn to communicate with basic Mandarin. As I didn’t speak Mandarin and had never studied I quickly learned words to get by with. Especially with taxis, you either need to know the very basics or you must have your address you are going to written in Chinese. Well as I didn’t always have an opportunity to present the written address I was eager to communicate with the very basics of getting by with taxis.

on Shanghai's street, 03/2013

The lights of Shanghai

As Metso is an international company, working in Shanghai office does not differ that much of working in Finland or anywhere else. Of course there are the cultural aspects but you get used to the customs and habits quickly like the work hours are from 9 am to 5.30 am and that most of your colleagues get a company bus to work. Lunch is served in the canteen and there are no forks or knives available! When it is not too cold and too warm, my colleagues like to have a walk around the factory after lunch. In fact I think this has something to do with the Chinese custom of taking at least 90 steps every day to stay healthy.

To be honest I loved Shanghai and still do. It is extremely interesting place and there is always something going on at work or in the spare time. People are very friendly and interested in foreigners and many people wish to speak to you as they want to learn more English. I highly recommend!

Anniina

It has been really fun

Just like all other wonderful times that pass so quickly, we are now approaching the end of summer in Finland. Yet for me this marks an exciting starting point as I recently finished my traineeship in Metso and started working as a full-time business analyst in Metso Group Strategy at Helsinki headquarter.

I first joined Metso as a trainee in Group Strategy in October 2012. With a degree in energy management & economics, as well as a degree in finance, I like working on a mix of everything, exploring “terra incognita” and constantly challenging myself. Also for me nothing is more enjoyable when I can discover all the excitement by working in an energetic, mutual-supporting and (perhaps most importantly) fun team.

So after all, what do I do in my work, how this summer has been for me and what is the best thing so far I’ve found about working in Metso? Without revealing more, I’ll let you to find answer to these questions in this video clip. It’s has been difficult to squeeze all the excitement and fun into a short video, so if you would like to know more, I encourage you to leave your comments or better still, apply to Metso and become one of us!

Manchester of the North

I´m going to tell you a secret. Or maybe a cluster of secrets. I´m going to unveil something about Finland which is not commonly known from an international perspective. It has something to do with the small size of our nation and our ´outbackish´ Northern European location. Maybe this has something to do with the fact that sometimes people from all around the world are not that familiar with Finland. They sure know that the Finnish capital is Helsinki (right?). Now I´m coming to my little secret. Here it goes: there is another city in Finland which may just be as tempting as our capital and is surely claiming ´The Most Awesome City of Finland´ -title. It has the beat of a big city but the benefits of a small village. It´s in between two big lakes, people there talk with an epic dialect, it´s a hockey town like no other and the local delicatesse is a blood sausage covered with lingonberry jam. This city is called Tampere. (And if you ask me it just freakin´ rocks!)

Tampere was founded in 1775 and first it was just a market place in the poor rural area. Tampere began to develop in the 19th century when as a part of the industrial revolution the city began to play a major role as an industrial center of Finland. Tammerkoski channel, which crosses the city center, provided sufficient power for the factories which were built on the banks of the channel. And so it happened that in the mid 1800´s Tampere had almost the half of Finland´s industrial labour which has left a strong labour and industrial culture for the city. They even started to call Tampere as´Manchester of the North´ because of the similarities with the UK´s industrialised Manchester. In Tampere textile manufacturing was the state-of-the-art and main industry at the beginning but during the decades industries developed towards common metal industry and other. In these days Tampere is also known of its information technology and telecommunication industry.

Metso is a big part of the city and its colorful history. Metso Group has multiple posts in and outside the city but there is one undeniable and legendary site which is just a walking distance from the Tammerkoski channel (and all the other neat places). That place is called ´Lokomo´ and it´s an industry site for Metso Minerals at Hatanpää neighborhood. It is place where history and tradition meet the modern engineering skills. Back in the days Lokomo was actually a corporation, founded in 1915, and it manufactured trains (locomotives). Nowadays Metso Minerals is occupying the old Lokomo site but at the main gate you can still see an old train as a reminder of the old days.

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Did you know that Tampere has been continuously voted as ´The Best Place To Live in Finland´? And if we take a look at international news about Finland, such as the Best Country in the World for Mothers and the Best Country in the World, you could say that Tampere might just be one of the best places to live on earth! Is it because the city has somewhat 35 000 students of its 218 000 inhabitants which makes the city vibrant or is it because Tampere has the perfect location with nature and outdoor spots at your doorstep? Maybe it´s because of 80´s rock´n roll ages when there was a huge boom in Finnish rock culture, especially in Tampere where they created this strange and mystic ´ManseRock´ hype with mullets, leather jackets and white sneakers.

Näsijärvi sunset

Upper reaches at Tammerkoski channel and the sunset by the lake Näsijärvi

When visiting Finland, travelers, backpackers, tourists, businessmen and women are quite often spending their summer days in Helsinki, our beautiful capital. But take caution! You just might miss the Pearl of the Inland, imposing, loose and laid-back Tampere.

Jaakko Vuorio

Summer Trainee and ´Manse freak´.

Tampere, Finland