Jumping on AI

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In management there are a variety of tools that can be used to describe the way that people learn, act, reason, communicate etc. They are models and frameworks that can be used in order to better adapt your leadership style for each person and figure out how you best can lead your team. As I’ve studied these models I’ve also done the assessments myself in order to understand how I work. So after years of studying these models, I find myself thinking “that was such a type 3 learning style thing to say”, “I’m really in development phase 2 right now” or “I’m having a very IF day for an ENTJ today” (yes I’m a total geek).

I’ve been spending a lot of time reading up on artificial intelligence (AI) over the last few months and I’ve reflected over my reaction to each article. I find myself wanting to jump intuitively at each opportunity to implement AI, and my head is spinning with ideas for different relevant areas and problems that it could solve. This is a very type 3 learning style thing to do (type 3 can be described as a get shit done type of person, interested in how I use my new knowledge to succeed).

At the same time, I find myself trying to slow down and not act on my instinct. Trying to be more reflective on if I need more knowledge to succeed with my new vision or if I have enough to start working and then find more info on my way. I think this is a tough balance. Because at some point you’re wasting time when you’re only reading up on more facts and not just getting to work. At the same time, by finding more facts you can succeed faster by avoiding certain pitfalls. But I don’t want to sit around a lifetime just reading more and more, never daring to take the leap. So where is the tipping point? The golden point where you know enough (to get started), and make it happen (while learning more along the way)? I think every innovator in the world is trying to find that sweet spot.

“The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt” – Bertrand Russel

Prepping for GIANTS!

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I was up at 04.30 to catch my flight to Stockholm this morning. It’s a nice contrast having been over the clouds watching the brilliant pink sunrise, then land in snowy Stockholm and huddle up in a café. I’m working from here today and prepping for the GIANTS event tomorrow at KTH! I hope you’re as excited as me and Aroshine!

See me previous entry on GIANTS here 🙂

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Where the magic happens

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We try to think of a fun and creative way to solve the issues that we face. We use methods like workshops and hackathons. Scribbling on post it’s and whiteboards. We put the best of the best in a 4×4 m meeting room and tell them to solve it.

Having been around a few companies, and always being asked the question how we millennials get creative, I’ve been reflecting on my own creativity. I wouldn’t define myself as a very creative person. I’m good at seeing what looks good or works well and then implementing it in my own way. But in the right setting, I do find myself outrageously creative!

So where does the magic happen?

The last few times it’s been in the basement of the bar Ruby’s in Copenhagen. At the museum Fotografiska in Stockholm during New Years dinner. At a coffee shop by the Helsingborg harbor at sunset. Hanging around at the dinner table after an 18 hour working day with the trainees in the Småland forests.

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In a café with the view of Singapores skyline during a thunderstorm

When we get out of our routines. Put our phones down. Relax. Are present. Talk about ideas and concepts. That’s where the magic happens for me.

The people are key as well. Being surrounded by these amazing people that have lived all over the world, started companies, fought for human rights campaigns, climbed actual mountains, created hit websites, mastered technologies, and built their personal empires.

My very best ideas are created when talking to friends over a glass of wine or a drink. It’s almost scary how high percentage of ideas that are created, and decisions that are made in these settings. Where inspiration is sky high and friends act as fabulous motivators. I even have a workshop planned to define my personal values and vision during my Paris trip in March: over a bottle of champagne with friends! A cozy environment is the catalyst for inspiration!

This week I might have found a new calling. Or the very least a great thing to do without asking permission. I prefer to ask for forgiveness after anyway. A small amount of civil olydnad – public disobedience, is good for the business. At least that’s what management has told me over the last few months.

A new design method for building IT systems? I’ve got it!

 

Things have changed

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A few weeks ago the we were at Ingvars place in Småland for trainee programme week. We were huddled up in the living room by the fireplace listening to stories from one of his caretakers. She was telling stories about the company leaders coming out there to work and discuss with each other. There were so many exciting and intriguing stories about big decisions, and they all had something in common: they only included men.

Then she looked around the room at the management trainee group, consisting of 12 women and 2 men, and said: obviously things have changedIn short: in the trainee programme, each supervisor choses their own trainee. It’s up to them to choose the most fitting person for the assignment. I’ll talk more about different kinds of diversity in another entry. But for now I want to talk about this major shift.

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The IKEA IT trainees: Tiffany in Integration, Ellen in Test Center, Isabelle in Communication Steering & Support, Shilpi in the Project Office, and me in IT Operations.

A few years ago I was out for lunch with my mentor, (then) a top manager for Ericsson. She told me about a culture that neither her nor I were raised into. How men for so long have been taught to have each others back and help each other out. You scratch my back, I scratch yours. When I was growing up it was more like: you look in my career direction and we both scratch each others faces off. It’s mine.

For a long time women were scarce in engineering and many other fields. Other women were considered competition, because there could only be so many of us at the top at the same time. We had a quota.

That conversation with my mentor changed so much for me. I got engaged in networks like Pepp and realized how much quicker I was succeeding when I helped others, even with the most tiny things. Since then I’ve worked so hard to find people who believe in me, that can lift me, while I in turn find people who I believe in, that I want to drag along with me. Not women or men. People!

Find a crew that believes in you fiercely. They are the ones that’ll make you succeed! And whatever opportunity you get, give the same passion and encouragement back to them.

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Huawei Telecom trainees in Beijing back in 2015!

Happy Valentines

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Love from Ingvar’s place where we got to spent Valentines with a visit from IKEA commercial manager Stefan Sjöstrand! Nothing like talking strategies and leadership by the fireplace, on this, the day of love and togetherness ❤️

Situational Leadership II

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3 days of intense leadership trainings in the Ken Blanchard course Situational Leadership II. We’re out in the forest at Ingvar’s place. We drink coffee. Take long walks in the sun. Laugh until we cry. Role play leadership. Workshop. Discuss. Reflect. Get frustrated and challenge the concepts. But it’s ultimately very fun!

I feel so lucky that I get to spend 25% of my working days like this. Being constantly challenged and supported. The programme really exceeds any expectations I had before starting. And the other trainees.. they’re just amazing. I’ve always considered myself to be a loner. But I love to be with these guys despite the intensity!

I manage to find moments of silence here too

Class of ‘17 and ‘18

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A Volvo engineering trainee, a computer science and industrial management master student and an IKEA management trainee in IT Ops. These friendships inspire me! In Swedish we call this klubben för inbördes beundran – the club for internal adoration. I think we’re pretty cool. After 5 years of math, physics and coding you’re allowed some degree of self adoration.

A diploma from KTH Royal Institute of Technology? Squad goals.