Henrik Lillhage has been working as a managing consultant at Softronic for just over 3 months. We met him for an interview when he had just started his new job and in this interview he tells us what his first few months at the company have been like. He also shares his experience of managing his team remotely.
In our first interview, you mentioned the ‘great depth in expertise’ when describing the image you had of Softronic. Have you been proven right?
“Yes, absolutely. And even more so since our first interview. My team now includes an experienced AI consultant, which is such an exciting area. For me it’s a real privilege to have the chance to work with so many skilled employees and excellent products.”
Can you tell us your approach to skills development in your team?
“Yes, at the moment we’re doing a lot of work on skills overlapping in the team. The main reason for this is to reduce dependencies on individual employees, but also to reduce vulnerabilities for our customers and the individuals themselves. We’re also going to focus on recruiting ‘junior’ to ‘middle’ people with around 0-5 years’ professional experience in order to expand the skills levels in our team. We want to have even more dynamism in the team and strike a good balance between experience and innovation.”
What has been your biggest challenge in your first few months at Softronic?
“Mentally switching my focus from ‘a lot of systems’ and ‘a little IT’ to the other way around. But I can see an exciting journey ahead of us, both within the team and the company as a whole, as we shift the focus towards more systems and services. It’s exciting to be part of this journey.”
What has the ‘getting to know each other’ process been like with colleagues and customers?
“Unfortunately, the coronavirus situation has got worse since our first interview, so we’ve had fewer physical meetings since then. But I don’t see this is a major problem. The more we get to know each other as colleagues, the less it matters that we’re not able to meet physically for our meetings. There are also a lot of advantages to remote working. For example, it’s much easier to find a meeting time, particularly early/late in the afternoon when you would normally be commuting to and from the office.”
What have you been doing in your free time during the pandemic?
“I’ve been going for lots of walks with my wife and our two dogs. The other day I went for an unplanned swim at Finnboda Hamn as Cessie unexpectedly decided to jump from the quayside 3 metres down into the water. It gave me a chance to practise my swimming while fully clothed. What was great was that a couple invited me to their apartment for a coffee and to give me chance to change my clothes, despite the coronavirus situation. My son came by on his electric scooter with some dry clothes for me. After I’d got changed, we continued our walk. But this time the dogs were on their leads.”