My career in HR – Cecilia Grip

Read about Cecilia’s career in HR.

Tell us briefly about the job you do and in which company

I work as HR Manager in Orkla Foods Sverige and am responsible for dealing with HR questions related to the Retail Marketing, Innovation and Finance departments. I also have general responsibility for Employer Branding, Health and Rehabilitation in the company.

What is your educational background?

I took a four-year master’s degree in HR and working life at Lund University.

Tell us a little about yourself

I am married and have three sons aged 11, 15 and 16, so my family is obviously important to me. We enjoy travelling and physical exercise, and have on several occasions taken various fitness trips to the Canary Islands together. I primarily run and do different kinds of strength and fitness training. I also love Italian food and the Italian climate and cultural heritage, and dream about having a summerhouse in Italy someday where relatives and friends can come and stay.

Tell us about your career at Orkla, from day 1 to where you are today

I started work at Orkla in 2008. My first job was as HR Administrator at the production plant in Eslöv, which had around 300 employees. Naturally, it entailed a lot of administration, but also a great many rehabilitation cases and recruitment of production personnel. After a few years, I was given a position as HR Specialist and at that point started to work with more strategic HR issues in the production plant’s management team, such as skills development and leadership questions. Since 2013, I’ve worked at the head office in Eslöv with responsibility for HR in respect of various parts of our white-collar staff.

I’ve had the opportunity to develop my skills in the company, which has been an inspiring process. In many ways, I work with the same things today as I did when I first joined the company, but in a different context. Today, I’m more directly involved and can exert an influence, which I very much enjoy.

Why did you choose this career direction?

I’ve always been interested in people and development, and in this profession you meet many different people every day and have a chance to contribute to the development of both the company and its employees.

Why did you want to work at Orkla?

Food is something that I’ve always taken a great interest in, and being able to work with strong brands that I’ve grown up with is fun and challenging. Orkla has a good reputation as an employer and when I came here for a recruitment interview, the atmosphere was friendly and relaxed. I simply felt welcome!

What is a typical working day for you?

I have a lot of meetings, both scheduled and spontaneous, and that’s been my typical working day ever since I first starting working with HR. The meetings can range from management team meetings in the various functions and interviews with job applicants to meetings regarding individual employees.

What does it take to succeed in your job?

I think it’s important to have integrity, the courage to dare to challenge people at times and to have an inquiring attitude.

What’s the best thing about your profession, and what, if anything, do you dislike?

The best part is that you can actually make a difference and achieve results, and of course the opportunity to meet all the different people!

Orkla’s new vision is “Your friend in everyday life”, supported by the values “Brave”, “Trustworthy” and “Inspiring”. How do you relate to the new vision and values in your job?
Trust and credibility is essential in my work as HR Manager, and the basis for all professional HR work. It takes inspiration and motivation to stimulate develoment and innovative thinking, and to take pleasure in your day-to-day work. Courage is important to be able to dare to change and develop both as individuals and as an enterprise. As far as Orkla’s vision is concerned , one or more of Orkla’s products are in fact used in the vast majority of homes every day all year long, which is just awesome!

Are there any special requirements for working in your profession (personality, academic qualifications, fields of study, etc.)?

The company has a general requirement that you should have a relevant university degree relating to HR and Business and a personality that is compatible with the company’s values. Otherwise, I’d say that it is the individual’s own drive that is the most important factor for success.