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Even a short job rotation period can be invigorating and develop professional skills

Sales Manager Tuija Hiirikoski became the Country Manager for the Baltic countries for three months. This opportunity gave her courage and fresh perspectives on her work.

Sometimes opportunities for new experiences come as a surprise and things fall into place quickly. This was the case for Tuija Hiirikoski, who works in the sales and marketing organisation in the Generics and Consumer Health unit. She was offered the opportunity to serve as the Country Manager for the Baltic countries during the recruitment process. 
"Janne Maksimainen, Head of Region Finland & Baltics in sales and marketing, let me know that the Country Manager for the Baltic countries would be moving on and that a replacement would be needed during the recruitment process. I slept on it and in the morning, I decided to take on the challenge,” says Hiirikoski. 
In Finland, Hiirikoski’s duties were divided between her supervisor and colleagues. 
“The workplace community was flexible, and the teamwork made it possible for me to seize the opportunity. Everyone encouraged me to go and reassured me that things would work out,” says Tuija.

Job rotation in a new country was a leap into the unknown 

Hiirikoski has worked as a sales manager at Orion for six years, leading the team responsible for the sales of Orion’s creams and generic prescription drugs and for the provision of training to doctors and pharmacies. 
As the Country Manager, Hiirikoski was responsible for the sales organisations in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Her role was to support the work of the teams, ensure that operations ran smoothly, help them prioritise daily tasks and serve as the employees’ link to Finland.  
“The most important aspect was to make sure that work ran smoothly and to reassure the teams. I sought to make them believe that things would be sorted out, one by one, despite the uncertainty involved in the transition period.” 
The Baltic market is different from Finland, and in a small organisation, the country manager also has a broader field of work. During the substitution, the whole team took on more responsibility, which meant a need for prioritisation.

Enriching experiences through job rotation

Hiirikoski says that the product range in the Baltic countries is not as wide as in Finland and that the market is highly competitive. The sales organisation needs to give careful thought to which products are profitable and which products are not worth keeping in the selection.  
“In a small sales organisation, people were used to being agile and working together when faced with challenges, regardless of job descriptions,” says Hiirikoski. 
The assignment gave Hiirikoski the experience that all kinds of challenges can be overcome and that colleagues are always there to help. Thanks to the job rotation, her language skills also reached a new level.  
Overall, the three-month stint as the Country Manager for the Baltic countries was an excellent learning experience for Hiirikoski. She had the opportunity to see and experience how a sales organisation works in another country and culture. She also got to know new Orion employees from different units in Finland and other countries.  
“I am pleased that I accepted the challenge. I already have several years of experience in my current job, and this opportunity was stimulating and provided me with fresh perspectives on my work. Job rotation is definitely one of the best ways to develop yourself and enrich your professional skills, and to apply the lessons learned to your own work and team,” says Hiirikoski.

The best aspects of job rotation according to Tuija Hiirikoski:

  1. The opportunity to develop your skills in an international environment. 
  2. Taking a leap into the unknown took courage, but brought a huge sense of achievement and the courage to take on challenges in the future.
  3. Expanding networks. Job rotation gives you the opportunity to meet new people from a wide range of organisations.