From Europe to the Middle East, Asia and the U.S., I’ve had the good fortune to travel the world, shaping marketing and business strategies for Websense, a global provider of web, email and data security solutions. Born in Sweden and raised in a very small town, I aspired from a young age to explore the world through a career in international business.
Today, at Websense, I enjoy a career that challenges me on a daily basis. At 36, I oversee a global team of 90 and operate in a fastpaced tech industry that requires my attention nearly 24/7. To stay on track, I adhere to a core set of principles that reflects my own brand of leadership – one that takes into account today’s rapidly evolving, global business environment.
First and foremost, I believe in embracing change. To grow, we must step outside of our comfort zones, take calculated risks and seize new opportunities. Embracing change is something that I’ve never been afraid to do, and I’ve learned so much because of it. My confidence stems from the strong network that I’ve built, both professionally and personally. I seek out the best and most talented individuals to join my staff. If their skills are stronger than mine in a particular area, all the better. I have also benefited from the tremendous support of my family.
In traveling the world, I’ve learned the significance of respecting local practices. I advise my staff to follow international customs and conduct themselves with diplomacy, while standing firm in their beliefs. Another one of my principles – essential in today’s economic climate – is to ensure that all projects align with overall business and financial goals. This principle drives my decisions and guides my actions, and as a result, has allowed me to gain the trust of other executives and colleagues.
Staying true to commitment is perhaps my most important advice for up-and-coming business leaders. It’s essential to deliver on what’s promised, and if you fall short, to be transparent in explaining why and learn from your mistakes. This principle, above all others, can make or break your career.
From my childhood in Sweden to my work at Websense today, I’ve followed my dreams of becoming a global business executive. It’s my hope that my story, and my leadership principles, demonstrate that young professionals can pursue their dreams with integrity and commitment.