The importance of good colleagues
Under normal circumstances, the Chr. Hansen headquarters in Hoersholm is a busy workplace with a healthy buzzing of some 700 people coming and going. On April 1, 2020 this was not the case, as headquarters was mostly in lockdown due to COVID-19. Nevertheless, Lisbeth had her first day in Chr. Hansen and had to begin her work with a distanced meeting with her new colleagues.
“It was of course strange that I could not meet anyone, however I felt very well received by my colleagues virtually. What strikes me the most when we were finally able to return to the workplace, was the almost family-like feeling I got, because everyone was so eager to welcome me.”
Lisbeth was surprised to find this family feeling in a large, global company: “I don’t think I have experienced that anywhere else. I think it is remarkable how these highly focused people find the time to be so open and caring towards new colleagues. There is generally a genuine interest in each other here, and I think that is wonderful. I’m also impressed with how ambitious this organization and its employees are. People work hard and goal-oriented, and it is very motivating to find this start-up mentality in an established company. It shows that we are able to act fast and make important changes when needed.”
When beginning a new job and getting used to both a new organization, people and surroundings, leaders can work as solid sparring partners. For Lisbeth, her leader Julie Mahler Kappelgaard was the perfect match: “Julie has played a very important role in my first time here in Chr. Hansen. She has been very welcoming and clear about which projects and tasks she would like me to be responsible for. We use each other for aligning our work and make sure we are on the same page. It is a nice professional – yet casual – work relationship.”
Bringing previous experiences into the new role
In her new role, Lisbeth is able to use much of her experience from her career including working within the entire value chain of R&D as well as business development and strategy.
“By having worked in the entire value chain of another biotech company, I have gained valuable insights as to how the different processes work and which impact changes would have. This will help me in my new role, where I work on optimization of different R&D processes in Chr. Hansen to support our overall strategy. I will be focusing on ‘new ways of working’ to ensure that we meet our goals and will continue to deliver the solutions that the industries demand. I’m very focused on continuously learning from each other so that we can consolidate these learnings across the organization. Only if we share and learn will we be able to improve and perfect our solutions.”