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BLOG: CEO FOR A DAY

Blog: Pöyry’s atmosphere exceeded expectations

Last month, I had the privilege of acting as “the CEO for a day” for Pöyry. After an inspiring day, I learned a lot about the company and how it operates. Also, I learned why things are the way they are.

Throughout the day, I was impressed by the overall atmosphere at Pöyry. Serious business was handled in a not-too-serious way. In particular, I was impressed by how Martin (CEO of Pöyry) and Juuso (CFO and Pöyry, Managing Director of Pöyry Finland) are able to perform in a high-level and make decisions without expressing any signs of the stress, which they are inevitably facing.

During our talks, Juuso revealed one secret behind this calmness. Like I tend to consider the journey and the small steps toward a goal more important than the ending point itself, Juuso emphasized how their decisions reflect only the tip of the iceberg. Before that point, a number of people, whom they trust, have worked a considerable amount of hours to prepare sufficient grounds for making the decision. In other words, for a large part, Martin and Juuso rely on having the right people in the right places. A large part of a decision is about people—about whether they see the person as the right choice to take things forward.

It’s safe to say that the day exceeded my expectations. Although, I wasn’t that sure what to expect. For me, the most important offering was to be able to spend the whole day shadowing what Martin and Juuso do. It was also a pleasure to get to know a lot of interesting people throughout the day, like Mikko, Peggy, and Liisa. For instance, after meeting Mikko, I can now better relate to the story when I listen to “Tunnelintekijät” (Tunnel makers) podcast.

I truly enjoyed my time. I strongly encourage anyone to seek a similar opportunity, if anyhow possible. It was a really special occasion to be able to spend the whole day with Martin and Juuso and discuss with them all the little things that construe their day. Best of all, you are able to get a whole different perspective on things, when you are able to spend that much time with someone. 

After some time to think, the most important takeaway from the day was getting some first-hand experience on how to run a company. All the small details that I was able to see will surely help me in taking the right steps forward. It was great to get some career-advise from Martin and Juuso–since running a people business, they can offer a real-life perspective on how different applicants are evaluated for a position, and so on.

Esko Hakanen
'CEO for a Day, Pöyry'
Postgraduate, Aalto University