Smart skills development led to managerial role

Stralfors, part of the PostNord AB, develops and offers communication solutions giving companies with many customers completely new opportunities for more personal and stronger customer relationships. Despite the large number of employees, there’s a family atmosphere at Stralfors, where people work closely together and encourage individuals to achieve new career opportunities.

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Katarina Johansson, Team Manager e-services at Stralfors.

My main job is to create good conditions for my employees, who manage and develop our services and our platform. It’s very much about planning and prioritisation, and taking account of what the market is demanding and the budget we have. The most important thing for us is to deliver and maintain a stable operation and environment for our e-services.
At present I have three employees and a number of consultants, but we’re in an expansive phase and are growing to become a bigger group. My role as manager is incredibly enjoyable, as I like coaching my employees to deliver and to do a really good job.

What is your perception of the career opportunities within the company?
I think Stralfors is a career company in many different respects. Thanks to my earlier experiences in the Group, hard work, tremendous engagement and a desire to develop, I was entrusted with a managerial role at Stralfors in 2013. Stralfors isn’t afraid to invest in an individual’s development and encourages those who want to try out new challenges.
I perceive Stralfors to be an equal opportunity workplace, where they focus just as much on skilled women as men. It feels as though there’s a natural attitude that we should have an even distribution between women and men. At the same time, I know there’s active work under way to maintain the balance and diversity that we have throughout the whole organisation right up to managerial positions.

What are the opportunities for skills development?
Stralfors has sent me on a basic training programme where new managers can, for example, practise how to communicate with their employees, which is important when it comes to individual development. It was really great and provided tremendous reassurance in my role as manager. At the moment I’m doing a course called Business and Finance, to gain a greater understanding of Stralfors’ company finances and business relations.
As well as attending useful courses, you can also learn a lot within the organisation thanks to the large network. As a manager, I’m constantly developing and new experiences make me a better manager. I’ve found it incredibly useful to be able to access the knowledge that exists among my managerial colleagues in the network I’ve joined here at Stralfors.

How do you strike a good balance in life?
Stralfors is very keen that the individual should be healthy and that you find your own balance. Things can occasionally be very busy, but as my employees and I are passionate about our work it’s not difficult to put the hours in to get the job done. The family and their support are also important, we’re very close and do a lot together, which gives me a good balance between my working life and my private life.
Although we’re a big company in a bigger Group, Stralfors has a very informal feel. There’s an open dialogue and an honest atmosphere, and a mindset that you always share your knowledge and experiences. We’re under a lot of pressure to deliver, but we also have a good time as well, which makes our work so much easier.