Hej Traineeprogrammet & Hej Holland!

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Finally time to post my first entry! So here it goes:

Today I got the question: what does it feels like to start working after uni?
And my answer was: it’s surprisingly easy.
But of course this is not entirely true; it can also be highly complex and has its ups and downs. So, I will share my stories and experiences with you as honestly as possible.

When finding myself at the end of my engineering studies, I spent much time reflecting upon how I wanted the journey to continue. All of a sudden it was time to get out of that marvelous bubble of student life in Lund. Being a “generalist specialist” (as I this weekend learnt that my education can be labeled, thanks for the expression!), and also curious as a person, I ended up in parallel recruiting processes. This period was interesting because one day you think you have learnt something about yourself and your aspirations, only to have a setback and doubt it the next day. I had long knew though, that a trainee program would be a interesting way of bridging the gap, while it offers a professional environment where you get introduced to several areas, presented to a broad range of challenges and start to build your network from day one. Furthermore, the focus is on learning as much as possible about the organisation and developing your own skills! So in the end, when the opportunity presented itself, I finally followed my gut feeling (facilitated by the professional but yet highly engaged and welcoming atmosphere experienced during the recruitment process) and accepted a trainee position at Scania CV AB – a choice I am very happy with.


It has now been almost 3 months (my god, that went quick!) and there’s heaps of stuff that I would like to share in this forum. But let’s start with the most recent experience; my first business trip. To the Netherlands. Alone. I have been given the responsibility for a project with rather blurry frames which I am to fill with content, with the help of a resource in Holland. This is of course challenging, and sometimes I just wish that someone would tell me what to do. But I also know that wouldn’t be as fun in the end. The project targets how we can work to better create an understanding of the flow of products all the way to our end customers. Hence, 1 1/2 week ago I was kinda nervous and did not know how to fill the agenda for the three day long visit, but then I reminded myself; if you want challenges, go grasp the opportunities! So off I went, and it was incredibly instructive.

Since I am currently employed within the industrial side, this trip was also a way for me to learn how the same flow can be interpreted from the commercial point of view. The distributor I visited is located in Breda, a two hour flight and an additional one hour train trip from Stockholm. I felt rather excited waking up at the hotel, knowing that I would get picked up and spend my day at this head office. I gladly experienced that the entire day had been dedicated to me, where a manager and I sat down to discuss the project, their market setup and challenges, and how to proceed from here. And once again it struck me how open and friendly the employees are at this company; willing to share information and experiences. This is built into the Scania culture, where one of the core values is ‘Respect for the Individual’, and we seek to capture the knowledge, experience and ambition of each individual to continuously improve and develop. I personally feel I thrive in an environment where knowledge sharing is encouraged and the standard answer (at least to my experience so far) is: “Of course, just book a meeting in my calendar!”


During my second day I got to attend pulse meetings and to further discuss the project with several employees. I also seized the opportunity to get an introduction to our pre-sales tool and to have lunch with some of the managers (sushi buffet, yay!). Moving on to Amsterdam, which was the second stop of the trip. The hotel was situated in an industrial part of town and the dealer just a 10 minute drive from there. Spent a full day at the local sales back office, where I got to experience how they work with planning activities and how complex the flow setup can be; from the chassis delivered from factory, to the point where the vehicle is ready to be picked up by the customer (I think I am growing rather fond of our products, they can be pretty cool…). The atmosphere was, again, open and the colleagues seemed to enjoy each others company – at least we laughed more or less during the entire lunch. Knowing I had learnt a lot about this market and our customers, I entered the workshop just in time to see some of them picking up their vehicles before it was time to close the business for this day.


Someone liked the Swedish handicraft.


Time for me to wrap up this day and blog post as well.


PS. Breda is a pretty little town, which seems to host a great amount of cosy restaurants, cafes and pubs. Happy to discover this part of the country as well!


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En smakbit av det internationella

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Förra veckan fick jag oväntat känna på Scanias internationella sida. Sedan länge hade jag planerat en långhelg i Nederländerna som ett avbrott i den gråa februarikylan, som en chans att ladda batterierna. Jag hade däremot inte planerat att min resa överhuvudtaget skulle ha något med Scania att göra. Men när det visade sig att min traineekollega Anders samtidigt skulle resa under några dagar till en stad som bara ligger 20 minuter bort för att arbeta med ett projekt i samarbete med Scanias regionkontor, blev det lite för lockande för att stå emot.

På vägen från en träff med kompisar till en annan passade jag alltså på att svänga förbi Scania Benelux, regionkontoret som jag var väldigt nyfiken på inför mina tre månader på motsvarande kontor i Italien. Där gick jag runt och skakade hand och lyssnade på titlar som jag inte ens visste fanns, och förundrades över hur mycket folk som jobbar på Scania utanför Sverige. På regionkontoren sitter folk och arbetar med orderläggning, sälj, service, inköp, reservdelar och en massa annat som jag inte visste att man kunde jobba med. Helt enkelt en rad olika intressanta tjänster inom Scania utomlands.

Anders framför Scania Benelux.

En sak jag verkligen inte visste innan förra veckan var att det är möjligt att jobba utomlands även inom utveckling på Scania. Vårt utvecklingscentrum finns i Södertälje, men vi har också ett behov att finnas där våra kunder är, alltså i hela världen. Exempelvis har min traineekollega Anders då på sin andra praktikperiod fått ett projekt där han tittar på de Scaniabilar som är sopbilar och hur de används rent tekniskt av kunderna. Detta har lett till resor för att träffa kunder i både Tyskland, Nederländerna och snart även Frankrike. Jag behöver väl knappast nämna att han är väldigt nöjd med sitt jobb? På regionkontoret träffade jag också Andreas, som efter några år inom utveckling av styrsystem för växellådor nu har flyttat till Nederländerna genom Scanias Personal Exchange Program för att jobba med tekniskt stöd till den lokala organisationen i ett halvår. Ett annan slags arbete än att konstruera toppkvalitet, men inte mindre utmanande.

Som motköp till min rundtur på Scaniakontoret med Anders och Andreas tog jag med dem till mitt gamla utbytesuniversitet i Eindhoven och en sedan länge planerad återträff med mina kompisar. De bilderna får nog stanna i mitt privata fotoalbum, men jag kan bara konstatera att man alltid har kul med Scaniakollegor 🙂


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An energetic journey

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I have during the last weeks been travelling around in Europe learning about Vattenfalls business in Amsterdam, Brussels and Sweden.

My trainee colleagues and I started up in Amsterdam attending a seminar about personal development and strategic leadership. The first step is naturally to understand yourself, your values and behaviour in order to be able to understand and lead others. In preparation we had been asked to complete a questionnaire about how we would react in various situations. A similar form was distributed to our work colleagues, family members and close friends – the answers resulted in a personal report, describing our characteristics and capabilities. I found the material interesting and useful. Naturally, it’s important to be aware of how other people see you and whether it’s in line with your own opinion and expectations.

We had also time to bike and enjoy a charming Amsterdam! I have previous working experiences in Amsterdam, which is one of my favourite cities.  It’s artistic, beautiful and fun and the Dutch are easy to get along with.

After gaining new insights about the Benelux operations, the tour continued to Brussels and a seminar about “Energy is politics”.  The political agenda is more or less determining the market conditions for the energy business. We visited the European Parliament, Commission and discussed energy politics with our colleagues at Vattenfall European Affairs.

I am personally interested in the development of Smart Grids, which is key to the future efficient and low-carbon electricity market and a necessary precondition to achieve the European energy targets. I got an introduction to a number of European initiatives driving research, development and demonstration programs in order to accelerate and coordinate the deployment of Smart Grids in Europe. Very interesting and I gained valuable insights.

The final day of the journey was all about renewable energy and took place on the west cost of Sweden. We learned much about the technology behind ocean wave energy and visited a factory of one of the pioneers in this industry. Wave power has potential, but is highly dependent on an EU directive.





Wind power on the other hand is already a huge industry. Sweden has around 1700 windmills, and we had the opportunity to climb one of them!

Please let me know if you have any questions about the trainee program or the energy business.


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