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FutuStories - Sharing Stories behind Futurice: Meet Melanie, Design Principal & Futurice Board Member

02-11-2020Culture

As the youngest member of the Futurice board and new mother of a son, Melanie knows how to combine a family and a career. She always makes sure her encounters with others are honest and authentic.

Chiara Fürst

Marketing Assistant

I saw board membership as an option for a distant future, but when several people reached out, I started to see that I could have a positive impact now. I also saw it as an opportunity for personal growth. [...] I understood that my role is to bring my own unique perspective to the table and diversify the discussion. Of the current members, I am best equipped to bridge the gap between the board and the rest of Futurice.

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What gets you up in the morning?

What gets me up in the morning is the prospect of exciting topics awaiting me at work (e.g. data enablement, human centred design and leadership), as well as my smart and kind colleagues. And before work, it’s the good mood of my son who usually sleeps in.

What do you enjoy most about your work at Futurice?

In the end it comes down to two things. Firstly, my work at Futurice combines great company values with forward-thinking professional topics and areas – digital transformation and helping companies and society to improve by leveraging the power of design, tech and data. Secondly, I enjoy the company of people around me at Futurice a lot. They find a great balance between being smart problem-solvers while being kind, and supportive with the right values in mind.

When describing your work days in 5 words – which ones would that be?

#1 Variety: I encounter many different topics and tasks in my everyday work and these context changes and new challenges make it so exciting and intriguing.

#2 Continuous learning: Everyday I can learn and develop new expertise, soft, hard and interpersonal skills.

#3 Human interaction: Cooperation and exchange with others is important to me and I love the mutual challenge with and through other people – colleagues, clients and other stakeholders.

#4 Challenge: Every day I can tackle and master new challenges. Futurice gives me the freedom and confidence to seek out challenges and set goals for myself.

#5 Impact: What drives me personally, is the impact of my own actions and entire organization. It is important to me to have an impact on people, their work, their lives, and society as a whole.

How do you see your role as a board member?

I saw board membership as an option for a distant future, but when several people reached out, I started to see that I could have a positive impact now. I also saw it as an opportunity for personal growth. At the first board meeting, I felt humble – surrounded by people with impressive networks and decades of board experience. But they were all very welcoming and showed great interest in my insider point of view. I understood that my role is to bring my own unique perspective to the table and diversify the discussion. Of the current members, I am best equipped to bridge the gap between the board and the rest of Futurice.

What’s your secret super power at work?

I have a black belt in judo – a sport that suggests the gentle way: combining soft and dynamic activity, using your opponent's strength without being aggressive yourself. One’s action is a result of what happened, how it happened, and what the implications will be. This mentality and calmness accompany me through my daily life. I believe the fact that I assume good intentions in discussions has helped my career. Different opinions come from different personal experiences and backgrounds, which need to be disclosed. I always try to meet people eye to eye, as equals in any discussions. So authenticity is probably my real superpower. Honesty and credibility impress colleagues and clients. Everyone knows things don’t always run smoothly, so transparency and openness always win!

If you would like to read more fascinating stories and get to know our people, our sites and the community better, check out our One Million FutuStories Booklet. For more information about Melanie's work, take a look at her latest article about the three vital components of data-enabled organisations.

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