CMO Diaries: Speaker at the Swedish Embassy in Finland

In February I was invited by Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences‘ student organisation Kompetens 3.0 to talk about marketing, entrepreneurship and speaking Swedish in Finland (my mother tongue is German, Swedish is my 3rd language).

In the beautiful Swedish embassy, Julia Olin, Anne Ramsay and me were sharing our stories about life and work in Finland.

It was lovely having the chance to talk to the students and answer their questions. Here are some of my favourite Q’s and A’s.

Students (S): How does working life in Finland differ from working life in Austria?

Tanja (T): You’ve got very low hierarchies in Finland. When your grow up in a world where titles, ranks and the use of last names at all times is your reality, you really appreciate a more relaxed work environment where people care more about your attitude and skills, and less about your credentials.

S: Why did you specialise in marketing for software companies?

T: Honestly, I never set out to work in the tech industry. My first job in Finland was in a fintech startup and something just clicked. Also, I realised that especially tech companies are really good on a product/service level, but often neglect the marketing side of things. The mindset of “our product is good, people will realise it by themselves” is killing startups & companies. One of the reasons why I started my own company was to help Finnish companies go international through better marketing. 

S: How important is having a personal brand?

T: You always have a personal brand, in one way or another. The question is, are you in charge of it? Do you know your values, your talents and your directions? Do you actively and clearly communicate (wether online, or in real life) what you do and what you believe in? I don’t think you need to post 24 times a day on 6 different social media channels to get your personal brand “out there”. I think you need to live it. After all, it’s your personal brand and not your digital alter ego.

I was invited by Haaga-Helia's student organisation Kompetens 3.0 to talk about marketing, entrepreneurship and speaking Swedish in Finland. In this article I share my favourite Qs & As.
Students, teachers & speakers in the Swedish Embassy in Helsinki

S: If you could have a superpower, which one would it be?

T: Without a doubt: time-travelling, especially travelling back in time! I’m a huge fan of history and I’d love to step into a different time and really be there. I wanna witness defining moments of humankind, but moreover I just want to “live” it. I want to see and experience how life was back then, especially during the Roman empire and Medieval times.

Oh, and one more thing, since this whole event was about working life in Finland:

Finland is one of the best countries to live as a woman.

Yes, there’s always room for improvement and yes, there’s always a need to make things better as they are. We’re far away from being done yet. However, if you look at the world at large, Finland is pretty much at the forefront in terms of freedom and opportunities for women. Never take this for granted – make the most out of it.

If you lead by example, you can create a better world for everyone.

Tanja Törnroos

Do you manage or work in a tech company? Are you in need of a Contract CMO or need help with your overall marketing or content strategy on a project-basis? Did I see you nooding your head? Excellent, drop me a line here and let’s collaborate!