Harri Nevanlinna is the second “catch” in our BE-terna Norway subsidiary in Oslo, which was founded in the beginning of 2022. Harri is an experienced likable senior manager with more than 15 years of experience and with a modern management mindset. We asked Harri why he joined BE-terna and therefore terminated his contract at one of the four biggest accounting firms in the world. Dear reader, let the power of BE-terna Norway team convince you to join BE-terna!
Could you please describe yourself a bit and tell us something about how you spend your spare time?
I am from Finland, but I have been living in Norway for almost 10 years now, where I live with my wife, my kids, six chickens, and two rabbits a bit outside of Oslo. If I am not working, I do sports such as floorball, spend time with my family, relax in the sauna, or ride my motorcycle.
As a person, I am goal-oriented and I like getting things done. I am structured, and at the same time, quite flexible and pragmatic. Moreover, I did certificates for coaching teams and organizational units in agile ways of working.
Could you please outline some corner pillars of your professional history?
I did a Master of Computer Science at the University of Helsinki and started working during that time as a Java Developer. I had the chance to work in different companies before I got a very interesting job offer at Horze in 2006. Horze is an equestrian products and supplies retailer and they had big plans for global expansion and E-commerce. I moved to Spain and became the country manager for Spain and Portugal. I successfully implemented the brand in the biggest warehouse chain El Corte Ingles and established a decent customer base. Back in the Nordics, I was responsible for the retail IT systems of the same company and rolled out AX2012 in five countries. I am also looking back at a couple of years of consulting experience in one of the largest Nordic Consulting houses, Tietoevry, and at Deloitte, before I continued my professional journey starting at BE-terna Norway.
You started working at BE-terna in Q1 of 2022. Can you share some insights about your move to BE-terna and what led to this decision?
The managing director of BE-terna Norway used to be my superior at Horze for more than five years, and we worked very well together. He contacted me and asked me if I would be interested in joining BE-terna Norway, and help building the new entity there. I liked this interesting challenge and the opportunity to be part of growing a “start-up” with a bigger group. I believe that the size of the BE-terna Group is perfect to attract interesting customers, while still being able to cultivate personal customer relationships. Before I made the decision to join BE-terna I did some research about BE-terna, and I liked everything I saw. I went to the homepage and found a lot of helpful, well-structured information and I also did some background checks on which kind of people are working at BE-terna. I knew some of them from implementation projects of former jobs. I also had the chance to meet some key employees in the recruiting process. I was convinced by the local presence, the power of BE-terna Nordics, and having a strong global backing and a pool of competencies, available from the BE-terna group, when needed. It feels like BE-terna Norway is the perfect fit for me, and I am looking forward to adding new talents to our team.
Why do you like working at BE-terna?
I am excited about building up BE-terna Norway, and the tasks that are coming with it. I am stunned by the sense of ownership I have at BE-terna Norway. Being able to make an impact on results, as well as the company culture, gives me a huge portion of motivation too. We have a high focus on growing the BE-terna team in Norway and onboarding new customers and hereby, being their partner for digital transformation. Additionally, BE-terna Norway can count on great collaborations within the Nordics subsidiaries. In general, I want to say that I am delighted to be surrounded by very competent and “hands-on” colleagues. The skills of the people are vast and lots of us have long experience with the products themselves, and a strong technical background. The way I experience BE-terna is highly positive. We are characterized by a supportive company culture and working with different teams and colleagues is fun. We, BE-terna Norway, profit from the very good backing of the corporate global functions like Marketing, Sales, Finance, or Recruitment.
What are 3 of your strengths that will contribute to the success of BE-terna Norway?
One of the most important things for me is to be a good communicator. Both, towards the customer, but also within the BE-terna team. Great communication helps make everything smoother. In my job, I make sure that there is good transparency to make situations predictable.
It is also a key element of building long-term relationships with customers and employees. I have a high level of integrity – I am transparent and honest in the communication and I keep promises. I do not only think of short-term wins, but also building long-term relationships and strategic partnerships, which can be beneficial for all parties.
In my opinion, an essential element for becoming a high-performance team is to guarantee “psychological safety”. By that, I mean that employees should not be afraid of saying their opinion or making mistakes since that would affect the culture and the performance. There are many things happening on a regular workday. Therefore it is important to build trust and safety.
Another thing that is important is the establishment of clear goals. This is important for me, but I am also always able to provide clear goals to co-workers. Quick responses are related to the culture of communication I mentioned earlier, but also to delivering promises towards customers. I am able to transmit the mission and purpose of what we do, and what we are aiming for. I believe that involving employees makes them engaged to reach common goals, and giving responsibilities is thriving for many. I am a fan of clear communication and structured processes, and I get a lot of motivation when seeing actual results and delivering value continuously.