Balancing studies with a relevant student worker position
I completed my bachelor’s degree in English and Organizational Communication in 2020 and I am now doing a master’s in Business Administration and Organizational Communication with a minor in Behavioral Neuroscience.
What it’s like to work here
When I first stepped into my Student Worker role, everything was really exciting, but also overwhelming; it was challenging to find my place in an office after many years of working in retail. However, it was really cool how the organization and people around me supported me in this transition from “just” a Uni student to a Student Worker, and how my inputs have always been equally as valuable as inputs from those in full-time positions with several years of experience.
My position has a nice balance of tasks that are recurring, and thus that I get to become quite familiar with, and tasks that push me slightly out of my comfort zone and require me to think or act in ways that I have not before. This balance really keeps things interesting but pleasant in my role.
The best thing about working for Nestlé is without a doubt my team. They are (and have been since day one) a great support for me, professionally as well as personally. We are all quite ambitious and take our jobs and responsibilities very seriously, but we also joke around and care about each other’s personal lives.
What it’s like to grow here
I started my career with Nestlé in early 2017 as a Coffee Specialist in a Nespresso boutique. I am a huge coffee nerd, so I absolutely loved working for Nespresso and sharing that passion with customers and colleagues!
However, back in 2020, when I was approaching the end of my bachelor’s degree, I came across an opening in Nordic HR as a Student Worker in Talent Acquisition & Development. I had honestly never considered HR as a potential career path for me; most likely because I had no idea of the broad scope of tasks and responsibilities that fall under HR. But I remember seeing the job ad and thinking “that’s it, that’s what I want to do”. I was well aware that I had no relevant experience within the field of HR, but I thought that my 3½ years of experience in the business would definitely hold some value too. So, believing it was the only right thing to do, I called up my superior at Nespresso and told him that I was going to apply for this position in Nestlé HR – to which he responded with nothing but full support, clearly happy that I was interested in staying with Nestlé and Nespresso. “Let’s make this happen, Frederikke”. I am still beyond grateful that he was completely onboard with me in this mission to take my career at Nestlé to the next level.
So, I applied for the job. Interviewed for the job. Got the job. And, boy, was I excited to get started! Even though most aspects of my new role were completely unknown territory to me, I had the best team around me that fully believed in me and my ability to learn and succeed. I have always liked to think of myself as a fast learner, but while becoming familiar with my new tasks was challenging, it has honestly been equally as challenging to discover myself as a white-collar professional after many years of working in retail.
Now, after close to 1½ years in my role as a Student Worker, I have learned so much about advanced HR processes and systems, but also so many “softer” but equally important skills – at least in my opinion. Like many other students, I used to struggle with balancing my studies with work and all the other things I enjoy doing, so learning to prioritize my time and energy has been a life-changing experience to me – even though to others, this may come completely naturally. I have learned that my perfectionist tendencies and my desire to always perform at 110% have gotten me far, but do not necessarily serve me going forward. That sometimes, a task completed at 80% is good enough. And the most important lesson of all; that my mental and physical health comes first. “Health, family, Nestlé”, as we like to say around here – in that exact order.
The entire Nordic HR team has been nothing but a great support in me “finding my place” and figuring out how to navigate this new context and responsibility. In the future, I hope that I can provide the same level of support to others as I have received in my role so far. I believe that this is key for the organization to be successful and healthy, today and tomorrow.
My best advice for other young professionals is probably to never underestimate the power of your network and to really care about doing your job well, no matter if you work in an office, a store, or in a service role. Each job I have had since I was 17 has turned into the next – my job selling ice cream led me to my next role selling Christmas ornaments, which led me to my next role with Nespresso, which then led me to my current role with Nestlé. Any job teaches you the importance of hard work and good interpersonal communication (as long as you have at least one colleague or customer).
The impact you can have here
I am quite involved in the Nestlé Needs YOUth initiative in the Nordics, which aims to give students and other young professionals the skills they need to thrive in tomorrow’s workplaces. I was fortunate to get an opportunity to develop my professional self through this role, and I am passionate about creating more opportunities for other students to transition from life at university into the workforce.
With the scale of our business, I am also really excited about the impact we can have with our initiatives on environmental sustainability, e.g., through our Net Zero Road Map. I know that some people might question our integrity as a large international corporation, but I have no questions about the integrity of the people that I surround myself with every day in our Nordic offices.