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“life-changing career” – What it Means For Me

Category: International Operations Business | (0) comments

 

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June has finally arrived and in 3 months, the graduate programme for the 2015 batch will be wrapping up. In football terms, we’re in the last 15 minutes of the game with everything there is to win. Indeed, the programme has been true to its tag-line: “life-changing career”. I have learned so much about Novo Nordisk and its business but most importantly, I have learned a lot about myself. I have experienced and done things that never in my wildest dreams could’ve imagined. I have learned from most the ambitious, amazing, and inspiring people throughout the programme spanning 3 different continents.

When I was doing my master’s degree, I wanted to do something that would change the world and have a positive impact on people. (Yeah, that typical millennial mindset trying to conceal the fact that I didn’t know what to do with my life). However, I really didn’t know exactly what it was I wanted to change but I did want to make a difference somewhere, somehow. Fair enough, I had ideas yet they remained ideas with no actual plans of realizing them. Or, I was too idealistic that the changes or impact that I wanted in this world were just not feasible. It was frustrating, and most importantly, getting expensive as I was living in Boston after graduation with dwindling funds and no actual income. Everything changed when I got into the graduate programme.

For my first rotation, I went back to the Philippines. As it was my first time in the pharmaceutical industry, I had some catching up to do. The first few months were certainly an information overload. I learned more about diabetes and how the disease affects people, along with terminology such as pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and different kinds of proteins (I have a business background and in no way would I have encountered those words before).  As for my main project there, I was assigned to do a medical education event that would benefit HCPs and patients. It was exciting and I felt really great as I was finally doing something impactful. However, being a newbie in the industry, it definitely had its challenges as I had to deal with internal and external stakeholders who were far more experienced and definitely demanding. Yet, as a graduate, I got a bit of leniency and understanding from all of them.  After all, it was the beginning of a learning process. My key takeaways from that first rotation was to learn and absorb as quickly as possible, don’t be afraid to make mistakes, and don’t think that you are the messiah sent from the heavens that can immediately turn things around. (But it would also be great if you can!)

As for my second rotation, I worked in the global headquarters in Denmark. As Rihanna would sing, “shine bright like a diamond, shine bright like a diamond,” which was also my approach and it was definitely a rotation where I can have a global impact; just like how I wished it to be. As my pharmaceutical experience was limited to the Philippine affiliate operations, I imagined myself as a diamond in the rough. This was certainly an opportunity to learn about global operations and be involved in projects with a global reach. In Denmark, they were more familiar with handling graduates and the expectations were more clear and actionable. In my role, it was certainly fulfilling as the projects involved more countries and with that, came a bigger impact. Being assigned there in global headquarters provided me with the opportunity to reach out and learn from global managers with different functions and from different countries. I was able to interact with various kinds of people coming from different backgrounds who have given me a wider perspective of the business and, cheesy as it may sound, life. My key takeaways from that experience was that it has set some things into perspective and most importantly, it gave me a perfect example on what work-life balance is, in addition to a concrete example of what should be prioritized in life.

Finally, for my 3rd rotation, I got assigned to Colombia. I have been living here for the last 5 months and my role has also changed to a new therapy area, which means a new set of patients and a new set of products. Compared to my 1st and 2nd rotations, I came here with a lot of confidence as I was more familiar with the operations and where to get the available resources. I feel so at home here because it’s like Philippines except that people speak in Spanish. The hospitality of the people has been amazing, not just my co-workers but people in general. Everyone has been so helpful and warm, and frankly, I couldn’t ask for more. In terms of personal goals, I have finally figured out what exactly I want to do after having learned about haemophilia and how it affects the lives of people who have the condition. Being a new parent myself, I can relate to how challenging it is to take care of a child and can imagine how much more so for the parents of children with haemophilia and of course, the patient himself. It’s a rare disease affecting approximately 1 in every 5,000 males born worldwide. It’s a disease where access to adequate care is very challenging in the developing world. Given these conditions, it’s a specific opportunity where changes can be done.

I still have 3 more months in this beautiful country but I think I already know what my key takeaway is and it has to be a combination of these; be ambitious, stay focused, be patient, say “no” at times and trust the process. Over the last 21 months, the graduate programme for me has not only been a professional growth process, but it’s also a personal development process where I learned to figure out what I can do with my life and how I can contribute to this world.

 

 

What is haemophilia? Click here to learn more.

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Before 30 Years Old

Category: International Operations Business | (0) comments

“Before 30 years old, follow somebody. Go to a small company. Normally, in a big company, it is good to learn processing; you are part of a big machine. But when you go to a small company, you learn the passion, you learn the dreams. You learn how to do a lot of things at one time. So before 30 years old, it’s not which company you go to, it’s which boss you follow. That’s very important. A good boss teaches you differently.” – Jack Ma

Just in case you don’t know him, he’s the founder of Alibaba Group and one of the most successful businessmen in the world. When I was doing my masters, I had tons of time to watch his interviews and the quote above is probably one of my favorites.

So you might ask, if he said to go to “a small company”, why am I working for Novo Nordisk, one of the biggest pharmaceutical companies in the world? Well, I asked myself that too almost 2 years ago!!!

Fast forward to today, I am on my final rotation in my 3rd country and I can answer the question already. Why am I working for Novo Nordisk and why I would recommend the IO Business Graduate Programme.

  1. “Go to a small company” – One of the best things of the IO Business Graduate programme which I only realized now is that you start in the affiliate. When I started, I felt sort of disappointed and bad that I needed to go back to the Philippines after doing my masters in 1st world countries. After enjoying the convenience and safety of 1st world countries, I had to go back to a 3rd world country once again. But you know what, once I figured out that the affiliate was actually growing in double digits, I felt relieved. It got me excited! Yes, Novo Nordisk is a big company globally indeed but in the affiliate level, it is still rapidly growing and it has a lot of challenges ahead. I knew then that the opportunities for learning would be great and in this stage of my career, that’s the perfect breeding ground. It is like joining a small company after all!
  2. You learn the passion, you learn the dreams. You learn how to do a lot of things at one time.” – As a graduate in the affiliate, you learn how to do a lot of things at one time. You may be assigned to a Marketing project but you also get to do some tasks related to Commercial effectiveness, Finance, Product supply, Medical Affairs, and sometimes, even changing the printer’s ink! It may sound absurd but that’s actually very interesting because you get to learn to do stuff that you wouldn’t expect. With that too, you get to interact with basically everyone in the office, from the General Manager to the kitchen assistant. If you are open enough, you get to know what makes them wake up early in the morning. You see things in a different perspective and you get to know their ambitions whatever it may be. Those interactions can teach you a lot as a young professional.
  3. it’s which boss you follow” – I have to admit after finishing my MBA, I felt like I knew everything in business. I was that “annoying know-it-all-I’m-too-good-for-you MBA person”. Yeah, I’m sure you know someone like that too and yes, they’re definitely annoying I must say! :D Back to my point, the graduate programme gives you the opportunity to interact with various kinds of bosses in the affiliate and in global. It gives you the opportunity to learn from them and network with them, you also get to have free advice from them on your life goals. They can provide you with good inputs on how to live your life and how to properly grow professionally. These valuable lessons and inputs would have costed thousands of dollars from consultants, but you get to have them for free, or maybe a cup of coffee (which can sometimes still be free too if there’s a coffee machine in the office!)
  4. “A good boss teaches you differently.” – In my first ever meeting with the General Manager of the Philippines back then, he told me, “don’t be afraid to make mistakes.” Throughout my experience in the graduate programme, that phrase has been repeated by all my direct managers. Being a graduate lets you do things that haven’t been done before, it lets you take risks without really worrying too much. If unsuccessful, the worst thing that can happen is that your boss will just ask, “So, what did you learn from it?” Of course, these risks still have to be calculated risks and it should still be within the bounds of the Novo Nordisk Way.
    On another note, I’ve always envisioned myself to be working in the global headquarters right after doing my masters. However, this ambition has changed a lot after the interactions I’ve had during the Market Access and Public Affairs summit.  Vice-Presidents, Directors, senior managers, and various product managers from all over the world were in Copenhagen for a 2-day summit which I was fortunately been invited too. Learning from their experiences and their best practices from their affiliates is probably one of the highlights of my rotation in Denmark. This experience has inspired me even more to work harder in improving patient access to our products.

MAPA summit

 

As a parting shot, I would like to share what my boss in Denmark told me as it’s definitely different from what I have been taught before, “People who walk with the most stars on their shoulders here in HQ are from the affiliates.”

 

Have a good day,

Paul

 

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Ready, steady, GO! …but where? Abroad rotations in the graduate programme!

Category: Business Processes | (21) comments

Hello again! Today I would like to share with you where you can potentially end up for your rotations abroad as graduates at Novo Nordisk. I woke up in a snowy Copenhagen , and my head can’t help thinking about my next rotation…Panama! So I HAVE to share with you what I know and think about the experience abroad during the programme!

 

Snowy copenhagen

Bopa Plads in Copenhagen

 

A broad range of choices…

As many of you know, Novo Nordisk has a global presence: affiliates or offices are present in 77 different countries, there are 16 production sites across 5 continents and products are marketed in around 170 countries. What does this mean? The range of countries you can go live and work is not banal!

We had a graduate get together last week, where the graduates from the different programmes shared their next destinations. Quite a few are heading the U.S., our biggest market. Some will rotate within Europe (France, Spain, Switzerland,..). A few will experience Far East Asia (Japan, China, Thailand, Myanmar,..). Other destinations include United Arab Emirates, Brazil and even Australia. And the cool thing is that we are all going to do different things.

…So can I choose where to go?

I got this question a lot lately, so I’d like to address it in this post. As a graduate, you are able to express your preference in terms of function and office for the next rotation, but you obviously have to keep open for alternative options, too. Throughout the two years a graduate manager will follow you and your development, and he/she will discuss with you about career and rotation options, including the rotations abroad.

 

world map

Where graduates will be going

 

And what is the value of the rotation abroad?

I know that for many of you the second rotation is just a far-away thought: application and VIDEO are, most likely, the words buzzing in your head at the moment. However, it is good to think about the added value that this programme can give you through the abroad rotations. Primarily, you will be able to experience the affiliate setting, which (and this is what I have been hearing from all of the older graduates) is quite different from the Head Quarter experience in Denmark. The rotation abroad allows you to get closer to the market, to the patients and to the whole dynamic around sales and hands-on implementation of local and global strategies. I cannot wait to experience that in first person and to share it with you!

What I will be doing and why.

For those who are interested in a more specific example of an abroad rotation, I can briefly touch upon my coming rotation in Panama City. I will be living and working there from May to December 2017. From the current position in Corporate Sustainability, I’ll be moving towards a marketing position, well I will support the preparation of product launches as well as learn about some commercial effectiveness-related taks of the affiliate. This will allow me to experience a more analytical role, in a country that I never experienced before but that intrigues me for its controversial fame and, honestly, its Latin approach. I look forward to working in a new market with new people and new tasks! It’s going to be a challenge, but that’s what the programme is also about! :)

If you are also up for a challenge, make sure to apply by THIS SUNDAY,  12 FEBRUARY 2017 on our website!

Best of luck with the applications and, of course, feel free to comment or email me if you have any questions or feedback!!

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How could the three rotations in European Market Access look like?

Category: Global & European Market Access | (0) comments

Just like many of the other graduate programmes the European Market Access track has three rotations of 8 months each. During these three different rotations you will experience the many ways Novo Nordisk ensures patients access to our innovative products in Europe. Below I have tried to elaborate on what the three rotations might look like and what type of work you would be exposed to.

The first rotation: The European Regional office in Denmark The European regional office acts as the intermediary between Global Market Access strategy and local implementation in the affiliates around the world. The office has up until recently been located in Zurich, but is now located in Ørestaden, Denmark together with the Danish affiliate and the business area covering ‘Europe North & Central’. In this rotation you will support both headquarter and affiliates optimising activities. Therefore you will get an introduction to working in Market Access that covers both the more strategic work done in headquarter and the more hands-on work done in affiliates. This will provide you with an overview of the many aspects of market access and public affairs!

The second rotation: A European affiliate or business area (BA) This rotation is where you get to go abroad (naturally within Europe) and gain a lot of international experience while building a network! The work done in affiliates and BA’s is more focused on local strategies and the execution and implementation of the strategy. You will work on many and broad aspects of market access engagement and collaboration. Depending on the size of the affiliate, you will experience a market access team who are in charge of everything related to market access and public affairs. In the second rotation you will likely be driving your own project – of course supervised by your host manager – where you are in charge of the work process and outcome. In affiliates you are extremely close to the market (including local payers) and will gain valuable knowledge and experience that you can leverage in your last rotation.

The third rotation: Global Market Access in Denmark (HQ) The last rotation may be in Global Market Access in headquarter based in Bagsværd, Denmark. This department is constantly growing because market access is becoming increasingly important to the success of the company (read my previous blog post about why market access is so important right here). Here you will be part of one the teams within the department, such as Public Affairs, Health Economics & Outcomes Research (HEOR) or Strategic Pricing. In general the work done in Global Market Access is focused on developing strategies within these areas, which means that you can really use and leverage the many invaluable insights you have gained in the two previous rotations.

If you are still not convinced why you should apply I have listed my top five reasons below:

  1. You will have the opportunity to make a difference to patients and society while delivering exciting results from a business perspective
  2. Novo Nordisk is the world leader in diabetes care
  3. The programme is designed to develop top talent become future leaders
  4. You will be challenged – expect a steep learning curve!
  5. During the two-year journey you will build an extraordinary network

Don’t forget that the deadline for applying for one of the graduate programmes is 12 February (this Sunday!), so get started on your application today! I wish you the best of luck and remember to be yourself!

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If there’s one word to describe our experience…

Category: International Operations Business | (0) comments

One of the most amazing things that can happen during the graduate programme is that you get to grow your network exponentially. You get to meet colleagues from all over the world, especially on your 2nd rotation.

In the International Operations Business Programme 2015 batch, there’s a Mexican (Guillermo), Brazilian (Joao), Colombian (Julianna), Bangladeshi (Saifur), Iranian (Navid), Vietnamese (Anh), Kenyan (Christine), Egyptian (Yasminah), Indonesian (Yudha), Russian (Nikita) and Philippines (me!). For our 2nd rotation in Denmark, we lived close to each other and we would have gatherings where we would share our national dishes, conutry’s tourist spots, cultural norms, and traditional dances. (In my case however, I’m embarassed to say that I don’t know any Philippine dances so I taught them “the Nae Nae” – and yes, I learned that while doing my masters in the United States and I can dance that very well too). We surely had a lot of fun in Copenhagen and those memories will last us a lifetime.

As we start our final rotations, I emailed each one of them to share their new office views and I asked them to describe their graduate experience in one word. For part 1, I will be featuring Anh (Vietnamese), Julianna(Colombian), Nikita (Russian), Yasminah (Egyptian), and also myself;

 

AVDY

 

 

“I am Andy/Anh from Vietnam. I am currently in Tehran, Iran.

If there’s one word to describe my experience with the graduate program, it would be ‘unforgettable‘ (memories with friends and prestigious knowledge acquired).”

 

 

 

JRPC

 

 

“Hello! I am Juliana from Colombia. I am currently in Bagsværd, Denmark.

If there’s one word to describe my experience, it would be rEVOLUTIONary”

 

 

 

 

 

Nikita

 

 

“Hello, I am Nikita from Russia. I am currently in Santiago, Chile.

If there’s one word to describe my experience, it would be ‘amazing‘”

 

 

 

 

 

YSES

 

“Hello, I am Yasminah from Egypt. I am currently in Manila, Philippines.

If there is one word to describe my experience, it would be ‘enriching‘.

 

 

 

 

 

PVIA

And this is my current view, I am currently in Bogota, Colombia.

If there is one word to describe my experience, it would be “fantastic

 

 

 

 

Stay tuned, I’ll be posting part 2 in a few days from my colleagues in Kenya, Thailand, Dubai, Mexico, and South Africa.

Also, here’s a tip from my personal experience and from what I have learned in business school. When I wanted to learn more about the International Operations Business Programme 2 years ago, I invited the Malaysian graduate, who was in the Philippines for his 3rd rotation, for a dinner meeting and coffee. Talking to him in person was much better than exchanging emails. Plus, he was more open to answering my questions.

Good luck!

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About the International Operations Finance Graduate Program

Category: International Operations Business International Operations Finance | (0) comments

Hello!

I am Binh and I come from Vietnam. I became a graduate in Novo Nordisk International Operations (AAMEO) Finance Graduate Program in September 2016. This is my first graduate blog post. Nice to meet you!

As you are reading this, you probably are interested in Novo Nordisk and the promise of a challenging and rewarding two-year adventure called Novo Nordisk’s Graduate Programme. Does that sound intriguing to you? Let read on and find out what you can expect when joining the International Operations (AAMEO) Finance Graduate Programme.

  • What is in the name?
  • The AAMEO Finance Graduate Programme is your opportunity to engage in Novo Nordisk’s finance organization that covers Africa, Asia, Middle East & Oceania. AMMEO region includes 110 countries with many emerging and developing markets, which promises a diverse and challenging environment for all ambitious prospective finance graduates out there!

    Now, if you are interested, let imagine yourself in the shoes of a graduate and see what is ahead of you:

  • What is in the program?
    • Your Rotations:

    As an AAMEO Finance Graduate, you will work in three different countries in 2 years – 8 months for each rotation. You spend one rotation in your home country office and two others in one of the business area headquarters, the region AAMEO headquarters in Dubai, UAE, or the corporate headquarters in Denmark.

    As a result, you have opportunities to get exposed to different cultures and working styles, collaborate with multi-cultural colleagues, learn from diverse perspectives and gain a more global understanding of the industry in general and the finance operations in particular.

    • Your Tasks:

    As a graduate, you will take on a variety of tasks to enhance different key finance competencies. More specifically, you can develop skills in finance planning and analysis, finance control and reporting, as well as project management. When you relocate outside your home office, you can have the opportunity to explore the specialist areas including but not limited to corporate tax, corporate accounting, treasury, or internal audit.

    As a result, you are able to develop a diverse technical skillset, pursue different finance interests and challenge yourself in different finance areas.

    • Your Graduate Network:

    The AAMEO Finance Graduate programme itself can be seen as a close-knit family of graduates. Even though you may not work directly with other AAMEO finance graduates in the same location, you have opportunities to engage in scheduled Graduate department meetings and Experience sharing sessions, share and listen to stories and challenges of fellow graduates who are located across different continents and time zones. In addition, through the finance graduate training, you can also get connected to the very nice folks who are part of the Global Finance graduate programme and European Finance graduate programme. This graduate network is an exclusive perk of the graduate programme and presents a very nice addition to the international network of colleagues that you build yourself through work in each of your rotation.

    That is all for now! I will be back soon with another post. In the meantime, visit this page to find out more about the programme and our recruiting locations this year, and if you have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to reach out!

    Binh

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    Why the Novo graduate programme? My Four P-s job mix!

    Category: Business Processes | (0) comments

    “Graduate Programme or full-time position? Home or abroad? Generalist or specialist track?” Many questions were going on in my mind one year ago, as I was looking for the right job after business school. No answer was obvious to me, and career events seemed to have become a new hobby… I blamed my indecision on my curiosity and desire to not limit my possible scenarios…In reality, I felt a lot of pressure in making a decision towards my first, real job. If you somehow also feel this way, I will share with you how and why I found an instant match with the Novo Nordisk Business Processes Programme!

    So let’s press forward one year!

    I am now a Global Business Processes graduate at Novo Nordisk (long names sound quite official, don’t they), and I am really enjoying my first rotation in the Triple Bottom Line Value and Impact team, which falls under the Communications, Relations and Sustainability department. How did I end up in this programme? Reflecting back to my applications, I realised that four elements were the key decision criteria. What am I talking about? People, place, progress and purpose…a.k.a. my Four P-s job mix!

    People: “If I start at a big pharmaceutical company, what will my colleagues be like? Can I learn from the people around me? Can I build a meaningful network?” If you share these concerns, well, then it’s worth knowing more about this programme.

    It is not a coincidence that People is the first P of this mix. In fact, I believe this is one of the programme’s main assets. As a graduate, you are exposed to an incredible network of people, and they are people like you! By rotating in three different departments, you build relations with colleagues from the most diverse areas.

    In my current role, I am exposed to people with interesting mind-sets and skills that I might not find in any finance or marketing department. Most of them have been with the company for many years, which is for me not only a source of inspiration but also an important source of expertise and experience that I can consult any time. The atmosphere is easy going (not what one would expect from a pharma company), and if I have questions (and trust me, I have many!) my colleagues are always happy to help. Humbleness and respect are not just words on paper in the company.

    Meanwhile, I can count on my ‘graduate family’: a mix of international and like-minded colleagues who either are or have been part of one of Novo Nordisk’s graduate programmes. It is extremely helpful to have people around you who are or have been in the same situation and with whom you can discuss ideas, share feelings and, equally important, have fun! I live with another graduate, Claudia (great blogger, too!), and it is a lot of fun!

    The business and marketing graduates during the introduction week

    Place: Industry, company, country and rotations are all components of my second P – Place.

    When I applied for the programme, I had never worked in pharma, and I was not committed to any industry. However, I saw pharma as a secure industry with a bigger purpose, complex dynamics and varied career opportunities – all elements that fulfilled my ‘place’ criteria. Complexity and size often bring in processes and stakeholders, slowing down the decision making. For some, this might be a frustrating aspect. I personally see it as an interesting opportunity to learn how to work with and adapt to new processes and stakeholders.

    In geographic terms, Copenhagen is quite an ideal place to live in: you can bike around everywhere, nothing is too far! There’s art, music, good food, nice parks for burning off the good food, and a fun nightlife. I am also learning Danish (life might be too short to learn it, though!) and will be living here until the end of April and then coming back for my last rotation in January 2018.

    At the moment, I am also very excited to be moving to a new country soon. How often do you get to work and live for 8 months in places like Canada, Australia, Thailand, Chile…? Rotation options vary from marketing to R&D, finance, consulting…you name it! Of course, flexibility should be part of your personality; if you are focused on one particular aspect, the Business Processes programme might not be ideal for you. In order to learn and enjoy the programme to its fullest, you have to be open to unexpected rotations and be curious to learn about different aspects of the business. So, if change and novelty stimulate you, then this programme will make you happy!

    The graduate team during a factory visit

    Progress: You can be in an amazing place with wonderful people, but if there is no potential for growth, things will get boring pretty fast, don’t you think?! This is why my third P is about Progress – namely potential for personal and professional development.

    As I already mentioned, the graduate programme is perfect for exploring different areas of the business. In complete honesty, I don’t think I would have ever considered working in corporate sustainability myself, but I am learning about concepts and aspects of the business that turned out to be really stimulating. Moreover, as a graduate, you get to attend project management courses, workshops and practical trainings.

    In terms of personal development, you have regular individual meetings with both your graduate manager and your host manager, where you can discuss about work-related but also personal challenges and opportunities. Overall, the focus on both hard and soft skills is what I really like about this programme!

    Three-day project management course in Favrholm

    Purpose: My fourth and last P is probably the one that distinguishes Novo Nordisk from most companies out there. Having tried other industries before and realised that I wanted more than just money and responsibility, I purposely looked for a company with a positive impact on society. I am proud to work for a company that is working to improve the lives’ of people with chronic diseases. Especially now, in corporate sustainability, I see how Novo Nordisk engages in initiatives that go way beyond the simple sale of drugs. Being part of such culture inspires and motivates me greatly. At the end of the day, I want to be proud to tell my friends and family where I work, don’t you?

    I hope this post provided you with some useful food for thought. Please reach out if you have questions and I look forward to sharing with you my upcoming adventures. Stay tuned!!

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    People around matter!

    Category: International Operations Finance | (0) comments

    When and how do I learn the most?..

    What motivates me the most?..

    These are two different questions but I came to a conclusion that the answer to both of them for me is very similar…

    Before jumping to my recent learnings, I will take a few moments to get you up to date on my current story. My International Operations (IO) Finance Graduate Programme is getting closer and closer to an end. I have been around in different functions and levels of the organisation: in Business Area/affiliate role, in Sales regional office and headquarters collaborating with various departments on projects ranging from IT and waste management to Global Research. The content of work also varied from operational tasks and tactical process design to strategic projects and initiatives. A good palette of functions, geographies, formats of tasks and (most importantly!) people…

    My first day in Business Area Commonwealth of Independent States (BACIS) office, Moscow. During one of my first lunches with the team I was impressed to discuss not only my background and master thesis that I had just successfully defended; relatively soon we dove into discussions related to organisational development, employee motivation, behavioural economics, etc. I felt at ease to share my recent findings from HBR or Economist, ask questions about status quo in the organisation and potential areas for improvement. Collaboration with my first manager and department director ensured that I felt comfortable to ask questions, openly share my ideas and ask for feedback. These people remained an integral part of my learning journey even when I left BACIS organisation for further rotations.

    …And many many more helpful and supportive people in the Russian affiliate and BACIS office…

    My first day in internal consultancy department (Novo Nordisk Consulting). I got introduced to the department, went over a few organisational lectures and was allocated to my first project. After having quickly met my project manager, I was right away given a task to put together a few slides. The first challenge was by far not the hardest task that I was given afterwards on the projects. It was however a preview and early indication of the work rhythm and spirit in the team. From the first task onwards, my work in a new department was highly engaging and challenging; every teammate was given his or her share of responsibility and freedom to drive tasks and take the initiative. I quickly realised that my project manager is very result-oriented (as opposed to me sometimes); therefore, he inspired me to approach tasks execution as efficient and lean as possible.

    Another person who I was fortunate enough to have met during the rotation was my development manager. High requirements to quality of deliverables (including re-doing one document over and over again to reach the required standard), practical recommendations related to problem structuring, top-down communication and many other issues in question were invaluable for my personal development.

    One of the project owners was very inspiring for me as a people manager role model, a great example of how well strength-based feedback and self-development can work (how often do you reflect upon what you are really good at and celebrate success achieved due to your merits?) and in general how value-adding knowledge sharing can be…

    …And many many more motivating and astonishing people in headquarters…

    My 135th day with IO Finance and Local Manufacturing & Business Development teams (and other amazing colleagues in IO regional office). My rotation is still not over, thus I wouldn’t sum the experience up just yet as every day is so enriching in terms of self-learning and self-assessment thanks to diverse people around: crisis management, leading negotiations, self-organisation and task prioritisation, situational leadership, etc.

    I hope my remaining one month in the department and Programme would still be rich and vivid with learnings and supportive atmosphere formed by… yes, you guessed it: people around me!

    I have a short story to share:

    A mother wished to encourage her small girl’s interest in the piano, so she took her to a local concert featuring an excellent pianist. In the entrance foyer the mother met an old friend and the two stopped to talk. The little girl was keen to see inside the hall and so wandered off, unnoticed by her mother. The girl’s mother became concerned when she entered the hall and could see no sign of her daughter. The staff was notified and an announcement was made asking the audience to look out for the lost little girl. With the concert due to start, the little girl had still not been found. In preparation for the pianist’s entrance, the curtains drew aside, to reveal the little girl sitting at the great piano, focused in concentration, quietly picking out the notes of ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’.

    The audience’s amusement turned to curiosity when the pianist entered the stage, walked up to the little girl, and said “Keep playing.”

    The pianist sat down beside her, listened for a few seconds, and whispered some more words of encouragement. He then began quietly to play a bass accompaniment, and then a few bars later reached around the little girl to add more accompaniment. At the end of the impromptu performance the audience applauded loudly as the pianist took the little girl back to her seat to be reunited with her mother. The experience was inspirational for everyone, not least the small girl.

    …I don’t know about you but I learned that people around me matter A LOT! They can inspire and motivate, support and teach, encourage and impact choices. My hopeful and (a little) idealistic wish is to keep on learning from people around me. And keep on meeting many many more talented and impressive people along the long way ahead…

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    (Rated by 2 people. Average 5.0 of 5)

    Rotation Abroad: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

    Category: Global Finance | (3) comments

    Our application window is now open and graduates are posting all sort of relevant tips and tricks on how to make a successful application. In the meantime, I decided to share my experience from the rotation abroad to give your some inspiration.

    I have spent the last 4 months in beautiful Kuala Lumpur, in position of a finance analyst in the Business Area office – a regional headquarter for our South-East Asia Operations. I must admit that even though it has been my dream destination from the very start of the graduate programme, it was still a drastic change in all sorts of ways. It is my first time living in Asia, an encounter with a completely different culture, in a place where family and friends are no longer just a couple-of-hours flight away. Kuala Lumpur is a buzzy multicultural business hub, so it took some adjusting after calm and structured Copenhagen. Needless to say, there were times of frustration and misunderstanding, but I value every single one of these experiences, because it gave me great insights into my own preferences regarding work and lifestyle.

     View from the office and KL by night

    View from the office         KL by night

    Job wise, I found myself in a completely different surrounding, too: I am now a part of a smaller team, where the proximity to markets puts you in a very dynamic setting, and you need to make smart decisions – fast! Smaller team also means that you are involved in several projects simultaneously. In my first 4 months, I have been juggling the budgeting process, organizing a functional meeting in Manila for 40 participants and managing implementation a new sourcing tool, among other things. It is also here where I first experienced finance partnering in its core: apart from number-crunching, you need to understand the local business model and be smart about managing your stakeholders in order to create value for your team.

    Finance, Legal and IT meeting in Manila

    Social activity        Group picture

    Luckily, some things are true about Novo Nordisk in all parts of the world – and one of them is a close-knit and supporting community. Living in a new country by yourself can get lonely at times, but I never felt left out thanks to my friendly local and expat colleagues who are always up for something fun after work. And not to forget, the graduate family is always there no matter where you are.
    Lost in Hong Kong

    Lost in Hong Kong

    with  fellow graduates  who are currently rotating in Vietnam and Philippines

    All in all, it has been a truly life-changing experience for me so far, and there are even more exciting things to look forward to in the next two months: another functional meeting, now in Bangkok, and a field trip with a Malaysian sales representative.

    Hope this gave you a little insight into a graduate rotation abroad, feel free to leave a comment in case you have any questions and don’t forget to apply before January 10th 2016.

    All the best,

    Nika

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    (Rated by 4 people. Average 5.0 of 5)

    The Start of a Journey

    Category: International Operations Business International Operations Finance People & Organization | (13) comments

    Every time I turned a corner in my life, I had always found myself imagining what the new road would be like. Setting up a few expectations and comparing with the life thus far is a subconscious exercise we often resort to without even realizing that we are doing it. The decision to join Novo Nordisk was one such corner. Amidst the rigors of business school, these are often decisions that set definite precedents for an evolving career. The good thing is that I have taken it! But even greater is the realisation that it was right. Through the posts that will follow, I will try to give you a sneak peek into my first days with Novo Nordisk and how the graduate programme is an exciting launch pad to build a career.

    A unique experience awaits you at Novo Nordisk!.

    I am Sreedipto Bhattacharyya from India and I am a part of the International Operations Graduate fraternity of 2015. It did not take me long to find out that I am also the first International Operations People & Organisation graduate in Novo Nordisk. Having completed my post-graduation (MBA) from XLRI in India, I understand the dilemmas that a graduating student faces in the final year while taking a decision on their careers. The graduate blog is a good place to complement your research with graduate experiences. During my application to this prestigious programme around the same time, I found a lot of inspiring and insightful posts from the previous graduates, and it is time for me to return the favour. As a student we often look at how strong a company’s financials are and how big a brand it has. There can be absolutely no doubt as to how strong the brand of Novo Nordisk is and its strong financials are a testimony to the positive market sentiments around it. But there is one more thing I have realized as an insider that makes Novo Nordisk an organisation with a truly “sustainable competitive advantage”: The Novo Nordisk culture! It mainly manifests itself in the form of an internal governance framework that reflects the ambition of the company, the direction of the company and the values and behaviours that the employees have to exhibit throughout the organisation. We call it the Novo Nordisk Way.

    I have been with this organisation for about seven months as I am writing this post and the journey so far has been nothing short of an experience. The most important thing I felt after getting associated with the Novo Nordisk Graduate Programme is the culture of inclusiveness. You will feel that you belong to the organisation, your ideas are being valued and this is a company where “you” can contribute. And this is a great feeling to have. Add to that, the great opportunity to interact with graduates from different parts of the world, develop 3 different perspectives of the organisation – local, regional and global, and collaborate on projects that have strategic ramifications. I believe, the graduate programme is a microcosm of a truly global career that Novo Nordisk has to offer as a multinational organisation. Sometime back around the same time, I had made the decision to apply for the graduate programme and it was a conscious one.

    If you would like to know more about the graduate programmes on offer, please visit the link below:

    http://www.novonordisk.com/careers/graduates-students-and-trainees/graduates.html

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    (Rated by 26 people. Average 4.7 of 5)