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.