Her degree project marked the start of Pernilla's career at LKAB. Right now, Pernilla works as a team leader in the HR Dept., and firmly believes that the employee's involvement is crucial for achieving results.
Who is Pernilla actually?
I was born and raised in Kiruna. Already at the age of 14 I started in the restaurant industry, with an after-school job, and since then have worked as a cook, restaurant manager and project manager. While holding down a full-time job, I then studied in the Sociology Program with a focus on labour economics and human resources management at Luleå University of Technology (LTU). I wrote my thesis for my degree project about LKAB, which led to various jobs in the field of human relations.
What do you do at work?
I am a team leader in what we at LKAB call "HR Shared Services," which means a unit where we have gathered HR-related areas such as salaries, retirement pensions, human resources management and education/training. I manage and distribute the daily work of two teams, working with strategic planning, development, and attainment of goals. The objective is for us to work smartly and effectively, and make it easy for those in the company to find the right HR person to talk to.
Why do you work at LKAB?
I was prepared to move southwards after finishing my academic studies, but the job at LKAB was so interesting and stimulating for me that I felt that I just wanted to stay here. I have never regretted that, never looked back. I work with really super colleagues, and have been fortunate to have superiors who have given me a latitude to fulfil my responsibilities as I see best, something which is very important to me. What I also like is that LKAB is constantly evolving and developing; there is an idea of where we're going, and a commitment to get there. We are persevering and we rely upon our employees.
What challenges are there in your job and how do you deal with them?
We have gone through a major restructuring. HR Shared Services is a relatively new unit, therefore the challenge now is to get all the technical pieces in place, get a handle on the details, and get the information out to those engaged in our business operations about activities our approach and way of working. There must be a simple and easy way for one to find their way to HR. How exactly we will accomplish this, is something we will have to work out working together. Therefore participation among the employees is crucial. One of my strengths in challenging situations is that I don't hesitate to raise questions; I'm not afraid to risk temporarily losing my balance and try new things.
What do LKAB's core values (Engaged, Innovative, Responsibility) mean for you?
Engaged – that means to take the tasks at heart. To me, it relates very closely to taking responsibility for achieving the best possible results. To dare to venture outside the framework, outside one's comfort zone, to explore a new way of thinking. Sometimes one has to engage in "test thinking," testing out new ideas out loud: – What happens if we do this in this way? What's the worst thing that could happen? There is a latitude at LKAB for such an approach, in my experience.
How do you view the future?
Right now, I have so many interesting and exciting challenges with my work that I have not even reflected on taking any professional steps in any other direction. I really like it here. We have a lot in common – myself and LKAB.
Name: Pernilla Kettunen
Resides: Paksuniemi, right outside of Kiruna
Profession: Team leader for HR Shared Services.
Educational background: Degree in sociology
Personal interests: My hunting dog Reisa. Being out in the forest and nature in general - both in Sweden and in other countries.
Best qualities: Ambitious and tenacious.
Least admirable quality: "Time Optimist"