Let all people blossom

Meet our people

Julie Schoen’s company DBA has recently joined the Schibsted family, Sanni Moilanen works for our Finish marketplace Tori and Håkan Halvarsson is our new head of People & Culture. Get to know them and what they do.

Let all people blossom

One comment has haunted Håkan Halvarsson more than any other. Growing up, he was often asked: “Why do you always need to go against the flow?” Ever since, it has been clear to him that this is probably the most important thing he can do.

“My mother taught to always question given things.”

Perhaps this thinking will infuse Schibsted – as Håkan’s new assignment is to develop leadership and culture across the company. It’s not exactly a straightforward task in Schibsted, since it consists of many strong and independent brands, each with their own identity and culture.

“The pressure to be a modern and attractive employer has increased enormously. Not least has the pandemic fast forwarded us by 15 years with new ways of working, which is truly creating a global work force. Schibsted’s strength is that we are stronger together.”

In Håkan’s mind the key to fully acting on this advantage is through leadership. And building a common, overarching leadership culture is now high on the agenda. One step on this journey is the recently launched Harvard program in disruptive innovation.

“We also need to build our culture around how to find failures, catapult learning and optimise solutions. Failure is a great force if harnessed well. That’s how innovation happens.”

Going back to that comment about going against the flow, Håkan is also on a personal crusade to promote everyone’s uniqueness as a strength.

“When I think institutions in society, my impression is that they are made to crush uniqueness because it’s simply irritating. If our leaders and our culture could instead view individual uniqueness as a strength and let all people blossom to their full potential, I’m convinced that more success will come to all of us!”

Håkan Halvarsson
SvP People & Culture
Years in Schibsted: 10

Julie Schoen
Julie Schoen

Finding unknown treasures

Nice and engaging storytelling is great for inspiration and an effective marketing tool.

Julie Schoen has been working at DBA (Den Blå Avis, the Danish marketplace that recently became part of the Schibsted family) since 2017, and she and the marketing team have taken the idea of telling stories to the next level.

“When I started to contact sellers behind interesting ads, asking them to tell their stories – the effect and the engagement grew, it became a success.”

Today the DBA Guide is now a full site with stories about things for sale, tips on how to “upcycle” used things and guides on how to get your stuff sold. One of the most popular video concepts is about collectors.

“We focus on ordinary things that most people have at home, like puzzles for example. It’s great to show that things you might have in your basement can actually be worth some money.”

For other stories, Julie meets up with people who are selling more unique things, to create entertaining articles and videos, and to show people what they can do with reused things.

“It’s also nice to demonstrate that sellers and buyers are just ordinary people, like you and me. Sometimes people worry about meeting people they don’t know.”

Julie Schoen
Editor DBA Guide, spokesperson DBA
Years in Schibsted: 0.5

Sanni Moilanen
Sanni Moilanen

Supervisors will build the culture

When Schibsted bought Oikotie, there was a need to create something that could bind the company together with Tori – the other Finnish marketplace owned by Schibsted.

Sanni Moilanen, and the rest of cthe people team in Finland, began looking into a new kind of managerial role, to serve as an enabler for creating a strong united culture, for all 180 employees in the two different companies.

“We needed to build something from scratch that could give us a common foundation”, Sanni explains.

The idea was to define a role that would focus on people, coaching and leadership, instead of functional responsibilities, a concept that Sanni found so interesting that she decided to write her master’s thesis on how to define it – a role they ended up calling “supervisor”.

“The purpose of our supervisor is to empower employees to reach their full potential and to support a more modern way to lead. And we are convinced that this will lead to an innovative culture.”

The role is still new but it has already brought managers together. The onboarding included a “Supervisor Buddy” system in which two managers met and discussed the role regularly. And Sanni is quite happy with the results.

“I believe this is the first step towards our goal of creating a true learning organisation.”

Sanni Moilanen
Learning & Development Manager
Years in Schibsted: Almost 6