My journey started 9 years ago. At that point, I was finishing the last semester of my master’s studies and had no immediate hurry to apply for a job, but I got encouraged by the General Manager of Coordea in Macedonia to apply for a position. At that point, Coordea was still in its establishment phase having only two employees and a small office.
After going through the recruitment process, I got accepted for the position. As I knew little about Swedish accounting and administration and had no previous working experience, you can imagine how much nervous I was. Luckily, I had the chance to get trained directly by the CEO and CFO of Coordea in Sweden, who are awesome professionals and mentors. Something that I cherish, and I am grateful for enormously.
2) What was the biggest challenge when you started working in Coordea?
When I started working in Coordea, the biggest challenge for me was the Swedish language and the different accounting programs clients used. Everything was in Swedish – documents, programs, tutorials, email conversations… But as time passed by, and I had the opportunity to work with these challenges and items on everyday basis, everything started making sense. This, of course, would not be possible if we didn’t have the utmost support, training, patience, and understanding from our leaders in the Swedish office.
As the company is much larger today, these things are not so challenging for the upcoming accountants. Nowadays, there are many more available experienced accountants at our offices, so they can help juniors at any time. Moreover, the company organizes a lot of different internal activities for knowledge, experience sharing and educational courses, which are very useful and supportive for all of us.
3) What was the moment you knew you’d made the right decision to work here?
Well… I am not sure if there was a certain moment when I knew that working in Coordea was the right decision for me. I just simply “caught” the moment, I guess. Sometimes you just need to start somewhere and make you way up along the way. Test things, find what you like, and keep on working on it. Constant improvement and learning are the key. And that is exactly what we are doing every day here in Coordea. Looking at it retrospectively, I find my decision joining Coordea the right one and exactly what I love doing.
4) What is your biggest accomplishment at Coordea that you’re most proud of?
My growth in this company, professionally and personally. I started as a Junior Accountant without any experience, I grew as a Senior Accountant, and today I am the Accounting Manager of Coordea. I am most proud of the fact that I was a part of Coordea’s journey from the beginning. We built the company together, we grew together. I was the third employee and now we are almost 80. This year we celebrated our 10th anniversary. That is so exciting. Cheers to many more successful years!
5) What is the hardest part of being a young manager?
I would say – ‘’getting into the managers’ skin!’’- learning what management means, understanding your role in the team and in the company, the responsibility and accountability that come along, and learning how to deal with the everyday challenges as well. Then comes the second part, the practical, management part – to manage and lead people and to learn working with a lot of different personalities. Being able to identify their needs, making them excited, motivating and supporting them, encouraging them as well, etc. Testing the combination of carrot and stick as they say and at the same time – balancing and synchronizing all the client and company’s needs and goals.
It is challenging for sure. But as they say, you grow through overcoming challenges!
6) Has there been anything that surprised you about working at Coordea? I cannot say surprised, as I was part of it from the beginning. What was promised and more has been delivered. As I mentioned we grew together. On a journey like that every day is something new, challenging but also exciting. I am surprised every day. The important part of our promise is that we provide a working platform and an environment that enables young professionals to develop their knowledge and experience in working with international accounting and many other areas. To learn about professional way of working, the importance of transparency and trust, about what service means, and finally defining our own professional value in the global workforce and economy. Also, the opportunity to travel, learn other languages, meet different people and cultures, learn new skills. And all of that here in our own city.
What motivates you? Where do you find your inspiration?
I will list a few things that motivate me: success, effort recognition, learning new things, teamwork, skills development, a good work culture, feedback, transparency, loyalty, and professionalism.
All the above-mentioned, I have found in Coordea.
8) What is your career advice you’d like to share with everyone?
Be open to new opportunities and challenges, acquiring new information, and get out of your comfort zone. Find what success means for you and work hard on it. After a while, learn to work smarter, but not harder.