Swecon and SGA


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Hi everyone!

Vanessa is here and I will be taking over the blog for this week. As Sebastian indicated before, the trainees are now moving on to the fourth and last rotation of this program. Woopwoop. For me, I am heading to Swecon in Düsseldorf, Germany. I will be working on making improvements for customer satisfaction assessment on Swecon’s service work. Since I studied in Germany and already speak the language, it is easier for me to adapt to the new environment.

It has been almost two weeks since I moved in here and I can surely say that Düsseldorf is a lovely place. The city is bigger than I thought, very multicultural and lively as well. Most of people here are still in vacation/summer vibes since summer is still around the corner. Swecon office itself lies a bit outside the city and has nice colleagues. There is no common breakfast session like in Stockholm office, but lunch always works, which is my chance to get to know people (and remember their names as well).

Beside our main projects, we are also assigned to another side project called Strategic Group Assignment (read Anton’s story about his SGA here). For me, Lovisa, and Moa, we are looking at production of biochar at Lantmännen and its potential markets. Since mid-March, we have been reading a lot of information about what biochar is, how to produce them, interviewing people within and outside of Lantmännen, following up information to our stakeholders, attending a workshop on biochar, meeting experts, making different analysis of our findings, and the list goes on. At our surprise, many people put actual interests in this 🙂

Also, we got a chance to visit biochar production site located in Stockholm, which was our first time to see how biochar production plant looks like.

You can take biochar for your plant at home here for free

Now that we are approaching the end of SGA, we are really excited to see end results. Working on SGA has been a nice experience and I think my trainee colleagues would agree with me as well. Not only the networking part, but also working on a real business case that Lantmännen truly wants to develop, which is great!

I am now signing off for the weekend, hope you all have a great one!

/Vanessa

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This is just the beginning


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Hello, I’m Melissa from SKF’s Global Graduate Program – Wave 3, representing the USA! As you already know from past posts, the Global Graduate Program is a rotational program, which includes 1 month of training in Gothenburg and 3 rotations (5 months each) in different locations and business units.

In May 2018, I graduated from Temple University, in Philadelphia, with a Bachelor of Business Administration.

How and why SKF?
I always knew about SKF, but for some reason never thought to apply. Through word-of-mouth I found out about an internship opportunity at SKF, so the summer prior to graduation, I got some experience in SKF’s MarComm department. I went back to school, but kept in close contact with HR. This is how I heard about the Global Graduate Program and a short time later, I was hired by SKF USA Inc. in Business Consulting.

And so it begins…
Training: September 2018
Of course before the rotations began, all the trainees from Wave 3 gathered at SKF HQ in Gothenburg. These 4 weeks were filled with trainings, inspring words from top-management and fun bonding activities! I’d have to say, Wave 3 is a pretty good group of people – 10 graduates from 6 different countries!

Rotation 1: October 2018 – February 2019
After training in Sweden, I headed back home (USA) for my first rotation in Business Consulting. My main project was Supply Chain 4.0. With little knowledge about supply chain and logistics, it was quite challenging and I needed to step outside of my comfort zone. The goal of this project was to shorten the supply chain and create end-to-end visibility (from an SKF planner all the way to the customer). In this project, I was able to visit Motion Industries, SKF USA’s largest distributor, in order to see and actually experience the distribution process.

Gathering: March 2019
During the first two weeks of March, all Wave 3 graduates headed back to Gothenburg to debrief about our first rotations and to watch Wave 2’s graduation presentations, as they just finshed their third and final rotation.

Rotation 2: April 2019 – August 2019
And this brings us to my second and current rotation… In Gothenburg, Sweden in Communications Studio. I am the Project Manager for Meet the World. This project is like no other in SKF. It’s SKF’s largest CSR project. Gothia Cup is the world’s largest youth football tournament and SKF is the main sponsor (since 2007). Held every summer, Gothia Cup is a meeting place for kids (ages 11-18) from all over the world to come together, not only to play football, but to experience a new culture, meet new friends and create memories of a lifetime – irrespective of skin color, religion, etc. As SKF shares the same values as Gothia Cup, it is the perfect partnership.

Now what’s Meet the World? It’s a “pre-tournament.” With SKF being present all over the world, it allows our local units to host pre-tournaments of underpriviledged teams. The winner of this locally organized tournament wins a fully paid trip to Gothenburg to compete in Gothia Cup!

This year, 22 teams represented SKF in Gothia Cup, totaling in over 400 people from 21 nations. As project manager, I was responsible for the launch of a digital campaign (Instagram dance competition) and for the communication between all stakeholders, including Gothia Org, AMEX (travel agency), Sandberg Trygg (Ad agency) and all local SKF project managers. SKF Since Gothia Cup have recently passed (July 15-20), I am now working on a Project Management Guide so the project can be easily replicated.

SKF activation at Gothia Cup. This is where we ran the Instagram campaign!
Dinner with local SKF Meet the World project managers

This was truly and experience of a lifetime. Incredibily eye-opening and heartwarming. It is so hard to put the experience into words because Gothia Cup is something you have to experience for youself!

My manager and I at the SKF Arena.

What’s next?
After the next gathering for Wave 3 this coming September, I will head off to my third and final rotation… in SKF Canada. I will be located in the Calgary office in the Digital Solutions department!

Overall SKF is a fantastic company to work for. And yes, this is truly just the beginning!

I hope you enjoyed learning about my journey through SKF so far! That’s all for now!

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Traveling the world of Lantmännen


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Hallo, Bonjour, Hola, Ciao, привет, привіт, Halløj!

So you might wonder why I am using so many languages. Well, since last time I posted here at the blog, these are the languages I have encountered and I thought that I would tell you a bit more about my travels and how international Lantmännen is.

Hallo and Bonjour are both coming from the languages I hear every day here at the office in Belgium. Since last time I have had the opportunity to see the Brussels office where Unibake BeNeFrItEs had an employee gathering for all the employees. It was a great opportunity to meet employees from all the different countries within this cluster (Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Italy and Spain). During the evening we listened to interesting lectures, played games and attended our own street food festival with Unibake products! I thought it was particularly interesting to see examples of how to bring brands “alive” and give them a story, as compared to just telling the consumer that the product is good.

The lecturer told us to tell your customers why your brand is different. Does your brand have a purpose? 

A Unibake Street Food Festival with colleges from the Unibake BeNeFrItEs countries 🙂

But how on earth does привет and привіт come into the picture?! Well, as Anton posted earlier, all trainees have a SGA (Strategic Group Assignment) in parallel and me, Anton and Sebastian are looking at Cerealia’s International Growth model. This project took us to Moscow, Russia and Kiev, Ukraine where Cerealia is active, in order to see how the markets are developing. In Russia, Cerealia is selling both Axa museli but also Finn Crisp. Unibake is also on the Russian market and we had the opportunity to visit their office and learn more about Russian trends. One thing that was clear was that Russian people love Georgian food and we just had to try it. I totally understand the hype, as it was one of the most delicious foods I have ever tasted! Me, Anton and Sebastian started planning on opening our own Georgian restaurant in Stockholm when we retire! Exciting times!


Delicious Georgian food! We couldn’t wait to dig in…

Off course we took the opportunity to do some sightseeing in Moscow and in Kiev we met up with Johan who is doing his third project there. He showed us around the beautiful city and you can see some of it in the pictures below.


Me and my SGA-team at the Red Square in Moscow 🙂

Moscow gets 5 out of 5 toasters, a great city!

Above you can see some of the very beautiful buildings in Kiev!

Visiting Johan in Kiev. And yes, I am short, but that is only half the story in this picture 😉

After this trip, it was time to meet up all the other trainees in Copenhagen for a recharge = Halløj Denmark! At the end of each project we always have a recharge where we tell each other about our projects, we visit one of the businesses and see some of the production and listen to employees telling us about the business itself and about their own careers. This time we visited Unibake and we got to hear about their strategy, see bread production, as well as hear more about one employee’s interesting career. During the evening Mikkel had arranged a boat tour in Copenhagen and dinner at a great Italian restaurant! Thank you Mikkel!

Happy trainees on a boat tour around Copenhagen! 🙂

Also, the evening before the recharge, eight out of nine trainees met up in Copenhagen and we went to an outdoor concert, we swam and had dinner together. And rode a lot of electric scooters.

Above: Touring around Copenhagen 🙂

Above: Concert and trainees enjoying dinner together!

Meeting up with all the trainees and hearing what they are up to is always so much fun! But for now, we will all have some well deserved vacation! See you in August! /Johanna

Have a great summer everyone!

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My Swecon time, at mySwecon


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Hello again!

We are just approaching the end of our third projects and soon it’s time for vacation. It is crazy how fast this time has run by! This last project, I have been working at Swecon with mySwecon, the new web-app where customers for example can order services of their machines. I have really enjoyed my time at Swecon where I have felt as a part of a greater team, which really has motivated me. I’ve got to see a lot during my three months, I have visited 15 branches, met customers, worked together with the IT team in Stockholm as well as worked closely with personnel from the office in Dusseldorf and Eskilstuna.

Me in a wheel loader showing mySwecon in my phone

One really cool part during this project was when we visited the mine Aitik in Gällivare, which is Sweden’s largest open-pit copper mine. The machines working in this mine were huge, one of them you can see in the picture below. 

I thought of taking some time and reflect on what I have learned during these ten months at Lantmännen, and give some tip to future trainees, I’ve listed three out of many learnings below 🙂 

  • Feel ownership of my project. When you’re starting a new project and you know you will only be there for three months, the feeling can be that its hard to own the project. However, I have learned that I develop myself and perform the best when I feel ownership of my project from the very first start.
  • Involve others in my project. It is when you get different perspectives and discuss that the best ideas arise. Talk to a lot of people around you, many of them have a lot of great experience that can help you get ahead of your project. Involve others in your thoughts, reflect and discuss. But also, create your own little project groups within your project.  
  • Get inspired by good leaders around me. Reflect on what leadership style you like and what you don’t like and let the good leadership skills inspire and influence you to become a great leader and team member.
One last dinner with the Swecon team
One last lunch with the IT team

After the summer you will find me in Malmö, working with an operating capital project within agriculture!  

All the best!

/Lovisa

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Goodbye US & Chicago


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Hi peeps,

Last time I wrote a blogpost I was sitting in Copenhagen Airport waiting to board my flight to Chicago. This time I’m sitting in Chicago Airport waiting to go home. My time in the US has offered me a lot of great experiences, adventures and insights on the famous American life. I’m leaving with mixed opinions of this vast, weird and impressive country. I have learned that you cannot generalise and put Americans in a box, it would be like saying that Italians, Brits and Danes are all the same. Instead I appreciate the diversity and different personalities I have encountered, and acknowledge that in such a country you will meet all kinds of persons from all over the world.

Small countryside Dane surrounded by skyscrapers in Chicago

My daily life was in a small suburb outside Chicago called Lisle, not much happening, but I lived and worked in a small office in a nice area with kind and helpful colleagues. I got to be a part of the digital revolution that we are hoping to reach, and I have worked with exciting projects like SEO (search engine optimisation), social media marketing and launching a new website. As marketing is not my biggest strength in life, I got to challenge myself and my creative self in many ways. I had to create posts for our social media accounts, write blog posts and develop content for our new website. Despite the challenges of finding my inner artist, I have learned a whole lot during this period, and I believe that these learning will prove valuable in the future.

A goodnight picture from my last night in Chicago

On a more personal level, I was a part of the American working culture, I have met Americans from many different states, and I have been lucky enough to get to travel around various states. I got to see New Orleans and listen to all kinds of interesting music genres, I did a road trip to Niagara Falls with my family who came to visit. And finally, I was in Florida twice to see our production facility and attend workshops and meetings at our office in St. Pete outside of Tampa.

Now I’ll be in Copenhagen and Stockholm during the two last weeks before the summer holidays. The next two days all of us are gonna meet in Copenhagen to sum up the third period, see our Unibake production facility and have some fun together in the sunny capitol of Scandinavia 😉

So long,

Mikkel

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Learning through experience


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Ciao, hej and Nǐ hǎo TraineeBloggen!


My name is Nicola Brioschi and I’m part of the SKF’s Global Graduate Programme. I’m from Italy, with a background in mechanical engineering, ICE and turbomachinery specialization.
It’s been already 9 months that I joined SKF, having the fabulous opportunity to be part of this journey with other 10 colleagues from all over the world. Let’s go deeper into the details together…

The programme starts with a brief period in your home country (Italy for me) to get in touch with the local SKF and its environment. Suddenly, the real programme starts with an introduction month at the SKF headquarter in Gothenburg. I can’t imagine a better way to start your career in a global company: in this weeks you have the chance to meet the senior management, get the vision (A world of reliable rotation “) and mission (“The undisputed leader in the bearing business”) of the company and its way to achieve it.
The first impression that I had of the company made me feel that I made the right choice: SKF is a family, where there aren’t any barriers between employees, it doesn’t matter if you are a beginner or an expert, it doesn’t matter what is your job role; whoever you are in the corporation, you can get in contact with anyone to share knowledge, experience, ask questions about a particular stuff or just for a coffee during a break.
The time in Gothenburg was awesome and we participated in several trainings about Business Acumen, Finance, REP, products reviews and also a visit in the factory where bearings are manufactured: from raw material to a high-quality product. Furthermore, it gave me the possibility to meet the other 10 graduates as well as the previous SKF graduates. Funny activities and moments of reflection are mixed together and suddenly a great chemistry and synergy is created.

Wave 3 graduates with Alrik, SKF CEO

After the introduction month, I came back in Turin to start my first rotation, working on my own project. I was in the Product Development team for Super Precision Bearings, a product which requires a high level of running accuracy at high to extremely high speed (mainly spindles for machine tools, but you can find them also in racing, medical equipment…). I worked on a really technical project and I don’t want to annoy you with too much technical details: what I can say is that it gave me the chance to learn so many things about bearings, measuring systems, machine capabilities and 6 sigma principles. I am really grateful to all the people involved for giving me that opportunity, even if I was a fresh graduate.

Beside the bigger project, I was involved in the daily work of the office such as drawing preparation for customers or software simulations. During these 5 months I had also the opportunity to take several trainings on PLM, design courses and to take part at BIMU, the biggest fair in Italy on machine tools, robot, automation and digital manufacturing. The time flew and soon it was time to get back in Gothenburg for 2 weeks to share our experiences with our colleagues and have other powerful trainings as the GPM2 and the Agile way of working.

SKF Villar Perosa factory

As a trainee you are expected to be very flexible, that’s why I made luggage again for the second rotation: 5 months in Taiwan, at the machine tools solution factory. Here I am involved in different projects and activities with a close relationship with customers. If they experience problems in their application, mainly grinding, milling and turning, the solution factory can help them to find the root cause. In addition, we also design and mount spindles and components at the factory, selling to customers the assets and providing them monitoring services: only SKF can provide such a 360° offer!

But the journey in Asia is not yet finished for me… In June/July I am going to Shanghai for several customer visits where we will follow tests regarding SKF new products and solutions to reduce Noise & Vibration. Beside that, we want also to develop a more structured dialogue with customers to go deeper in their real needs and understand how SKF can help them when it comes to rotating parts. All the acquired information will be then passed to Product Development and Process to align. I am excited about seeing a new country and their way of doing business.

Trip with colleagues (or should I say friend?)

And after?

Another great point of the Programme is that you can actually choose your rotation and explore the most suited role for you. My next step will be in Steyr, Austria, working in manufacturing environment. Another part will be related to ReMan; this is quite a new business for SKF where basically we offer to customer remanufactured bearings, as well as service and condition monitoring to get more knowledge about the condition of their assets. If customer knows the condition of its asset in real time, he can also foresee maintenance period and change bearings without losing time; the used bearing can later be send to SKF Reman Centers to be inspected and remanufactured, giving them a new life. Can’t wait to set up another challenging project with my future manager!

Hope you have enjoyed the reading and gain some insights about the Programme and SKF in general!

Cheers,

Nicola

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Hello neighbor!


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Hugo here and great to be back in the blog-warmth again! After two periods in my hometown Sthlm it was time to pack my bags and head over to our dear neighbor in the east, and more specific to Helsinki!

Here in Helsinki I’m working at Agro Oy, the finnish leg in our agriculture business and I’m looking into their seed business and its production plants, volumes and cost structure. The project has been really interesting and quite closely related to my studies within supply chain management which have been a great experience to try it out in “real life”. However, that doesn’t mean it’s not been new territory for me, born and raised in Sthlm my agriculture knowledge was on the same level as my finnish, combine the two and you have quite a suuri (well, I’ll just let you guess) adventure in front of you!

Fields, fields and more fields, here at the Hauho Trial farm where Lantmännen Agro are doing research to offer the best products for their customers!

Trying to summarize my last few months here in Finland I would say that it’s been a real pleasure, meeting a lot of great colleagues patiently describing the finnish agriculture, living in a real nice city (underestimated!) that offers a lot of city sightseeing as well as some accessible nature and genuine finnish sauna (can’t write a blogpost about Finland and not mention sauna…). And of course, living in Finland when they win the World Championship in hockey, well that just doesn’t happen every year!

Me together with Finland, waiting for the National Hockey team

Take care and see you at the next place!

/Hugo

PS. And a picture from the first week in Finland:

Conference in the finnish winter gave time for some teambuilding activities – apparently they put the slowest driver in the front, who could have thought!

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Supply chaining the silos


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Hej blog readers, it’s Vanessa who will take over this week’s blog post! After spending previous period in Stockholm at Group Function (GF) R&D, I decided to extend my stay here in the capital and join another GF: Supply Chain.

The reason behind this is because I want to experience how it feels to work in a supply chain field since I only got a little glimpse of supply chain while pursuing my Bachelor degree. Initially, I would like to move to Malmö and be part of Lantmännen Agriculture business area, however there was no project within supply chain area available for me. But, lucky me, there is a joint project between GF Supply Chain in Stockholm and LM Agriculture in Malmö regarding supply chain, in which I immediately said yes to! 😉

At my current project, which has been running since late March, I was assigned to look at possible relocation of one of our biggest grain silos in the West region of Sweden. I learn (and am still learning) so much more than I expected! Starting from looking at one subject from different angles and interests, developing strategic thinking, incorporating external yet relevant insights into current data flow, and so on. Soooo many considerations need to be involved before we decide on one thing and so many information to be confirmed as well in order to guarantee its validity. In conclusion, I really like this project because it matches my interest and the outcome.

I haven’t really taken many pictures from this project (oops), so here is a picture of Stockholm in the spring and sunny weather.

See you around! /Vanessa

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Starting global!


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Ciao everyone!

I’m Ginevra from Italy, I am an engineer and I am part of the SKF Global Graduate Programme wave 3. Being half way through the programme, I feel like it’s time to share with you how my experience has been so far.

I am sure that you already know how the programme is structured, but in case you don’t, I will summarize it briefly for you:

  • 1 introduction month in Gothenburg
  • 3 5-months rotations in different business units
  • 2-weeks gatherings in Sweden with all your graduate colleagues between the rotations

The start – Rotation 1

I’ve joined SKF in September 2018, and after a quick week in the office in Milan to know my colleagues and get my pc and mobile, it was already time to fly to Gothenburg for the introduction month! Needless to say that it was great experience. What really impressed me at the time was the availability and willingness of the senior management to meet us and share with us their views. As a young professional, it doesn’t happen that often be given a 360° overview of the company and of its strategy.

It was then time to go back to Italy for my first rotation! In Milan I joined our Industrial Sales team for 5 months. During this time I mainly worked on a market study project which included database analysis, future trends in the segment, our value proposition and the go-to-market strategy. In the meantime, a lot of customer visits with our account managers!

All wave 3 during the introduction month

What’s happening now – Rotation 2

After the gathering in Sweden with the other graduates (so nice to meet everyone again!) it was time to start a new experience: I moved here in Gothenburg to start my second placement in Business Development in one of our factories!

I was expecting to have a slow start, being the new one that is staying in the department for only some months but it was not the case. Here I found a team that has involved me in all the activities from day one – asking for my opinions and challenging my views – the best start I could ask for!

I am currently working on three different projects regarding our self-aligning roller bearings, and everyday I find myself working with people from all over the world. Plus, I get to spend some time in the factory, getting my hands dirty and understanding how our bearings come to life.

In the factory with one of our large size bearings

What will happen next – Rotation 3

In August I will move to Katrineholm to spend the last part of my second rotation in our housings factory, and I am looking forward to understanding more about our manufacturing.

In the last few days I have also started planning my third rotation, which will probably be a split one: 2 months in China, joining the Product Development team, and 3 months in Germany.

I am extremely excited about the next adventures, wish me luck!

Arrivederci!

Ginevra

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Change Management Training


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Hey!

This week’s blog is written by Sebastian. I wrote my previous blog post in the fall when I was placed at AS-Faktor working in business development, but a lot has happened since then.

After Stockholm, I went to Unibake in Copenhagen where I worked on a project for their fast foods division. I looked at the northern European market for hamburger and hot dog buns to find out what opportunities Unibake have to expand in the segment. Did you all know that Lantmännen Unibake is the market leader for fast food buns in Sweden with Korvbrödsbagarn (read: MAX Friscobröd) and has a big presence in Norway, Finland, and Denmark? I keep thinking that it would be amazing if you could find our delicious buns all over the world though. Well, maybe one day…

Now I am at Lantmännen’s energy division, which just expanded by acquiring a British company’s factory outside of Norrköping. We are famous for our imagination here at Lantmännen (not really), so we decided to call the new company “Lantmännen Oats”, as the factory refines oats. The energy division also consist of “Lantmännen Agroetanol” (ethanol), “Lantmännen Aspen” (alkylate fuel), and “Lantmännen Reppe” (gluten, starch, and drinking alcohol).

Instead of joining one of these companies, I was fortunate enough to work with the energy division’s management team in Stockholm. I am “uppe i smöret” (“up in the butter”), so to speak. On a daily basis, I am helping out where needed, but I am mostly working on a market analysis for starches and the integration of “Lantmännen Oats” into Lantmännen. I also get to sit in on a bunch of meetings to really understand what happens in a management team, which is really cool.

The trainees in beautiful Skåne

However, this post was supposed to be about the training we just had about change management, and not about me. The topic of change is both incredibly relevant and interesting. We got to learn about useful theories on change management, and lead change through simulations and real life scenarios. A lot of the issues we came across were very relatable, as they are issues we all continuously face in our projects. Change is truly a part of everyday life, at least here at Lantmännen, so learning how to deal with it will probably have some pretty fantastic consequences.

We took the time to excercise a lot during the training. Here Johanna is trying to kill us with a cross fit workout.

Learning about change was great, but it wasn’t even nearly as good as meeting up with the whole trainee-gang at a vineyard in sunny Skåne. Summer finally arrived! We always have a great time meeting up, and even if we learned that there perhaps is a reason to why Sweden isn’t famous for wine, the beautiful scenery along with the company made these three days absolutely amazing.

Until next time!

 /Sebastian

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