Is there anything more uniting than an arch rival? When Sweden’s women’s team in the cross-country skiing relay was on the starting line in the World Cup, Sweden had only atained silver in the four most recent World Cup races. Always defeatedby Norway.

The national team coach had, in the last second, declared the team. It consisted of Ebba Andersson, who dominated in the World Cup and who confidently handed over a lead to the 19-year-old junior Frida Karlsson, who in turn had only participated in one senior competition before the World Cup. Frida became the Word Cup’s new Crown Princess – coming from nowhere, she went home with three medals. She delivered on her leg and handed over to Charlotte Kalla. 32-year-old Kalla had not been in good shape and many people watching the race probably sighed in front of the TV, thinking that her competing was over. Kalla made her life’s relay leg and handed over a clear lead to Stina Nilsson. Stina was chased by the best female cross-country skier in the world, Therese Jouhaug, who caught up. But, in the decisive moment, on the home straight, Stina forged ahead of her and Sweden’s first World Cup gold medal in women’s cross-country skiing relay was a fact.

I often find inspiration for my leadership in sports. Sure, some newcomer among compe-titors that you’ve never heard of has snatched an order right in front of you sometime. Or, even more frustrating, a tired and older competitor who suddenly bursts with new energy and performs fine results. Or the companies that year-on-year deliver reliable results, like Ebba on the first leg.

The coach has an important mission here. To monitor the competitors, while at the same time see and match the individuals in their own team. What young talents in my team do I need to let through? And can I motivate someone who has worked many years to muster that extra energy when it’s most crucial. Are the steady employees confirmed? Those who reliably deliver to our customers, making Stena a little better every day.

I was hit by the words “stay relevant” in the responsibility we have as a Stena Leader and tried to examine myself by them. As I did so, I came to think about the time when our then 14-year-old son wanted a computer. His dad and I went to the store and asked our son if he wanted a desktop or a laptop. He replied that he would rather have a gift card, and his wish came true. Our son ordered six different packages online, to then put on a headlamp, watch an instructional movie on Youtube and in 8 hours build his own computer, without help. Stay relevant…

Fifth time lucky for the cross-country skiing women. Personally, I’ll challenge myself with a team of four in Exploring the golden minds one of the Ready 4 Anything courses. For who wants to be outrun on the home straight? 

Cecilia Fasth

Stena Fastigheter AB


Stena AB

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