“It has changed
my whole way of
Improved working methods and a healthier everyday life
In 2021, Effektiv Nu trained all officials at Wilzéns Produktion AB in Linköping as part of a major ongoing change process. Herman Nilsson has been working as KMA manager for the past year and is responsible for quality, environmental and work environment management at Wilzéns. He has a background in environmental and sustainability science and has many years of experience as a KMA and sustainability consultant in the construction sector. In an interview with Effektiv Nu, Herman talks about the experience of the education and the effect it has had in the change process for increased quality assurance and a better psychosocial work environment.
”We are in a great period of transition and are making a lot of changes. That’s because the company has grown quite a bit. We’ve got ourselves a business suit that we’re in the process of filling out. We have gone from the small local construction company to a fairly large regional construction company, you could say. Today we are just over 100 people divided into three separate companies in the Group.”
”With the help from Effektiv Nu, we can now take the next step into digitalization, and hopefully be able to reach a higher degree of planning, structure and efficiency in our work. With an improved way of working with the help of both digital aids and internal culture change, we can achieve higher quality in our work and a healthier everyday life from a psychosocial perspective, in terms of balanced workload and order.”
What were your challenges before you took the Work Smarter course?
”We’re sitting about 30 officials in a far too small office that we’re in the process of rebuilding now. We sit two in some rooms and you sit in small cells. The whole way of working in the past has been about walking and talking to each other in the corridors. You disturb each other, knock on the door, call and email right and left. It’s nice by all means, but when there is as much to do as it has actually been for us, finding ways to work smarter and more efficient just to cope with everything has been very important!”
”Just transitioning into a cloud-based environment has been a big deal. All of a sudden, everything is available everywhere. You start working more with tablets and you can do more with the phones. Our project managers and supervisors don’t work with laptops in the same way anymore. Of course, you have it in the office, but now more people are working with tablets out on the projects instead. So in that whole transition to becoming more digital, you have been extremely helpful in finding ways of working that work and getting our eyes on what these different applications can actually do for us.”
What was your own experience of the training like?
”I’ve worked as a consultant at WSP before for 8 years and there they used Teams, Outlook, OneNote, Yammer and Slack and all that stuff. So as I sat there, I thought I know most of this, but of course you should be involved! You can always pick something up. But then you found these raisins that you didn’t know about that have changed my whole way of working. And just Outlook tasks that I figured, what am I going with this for? My post-it notes work just fine! When I heard Manne and Caesar talk about how they use it, I thought at first, oh god, what a pain! But then I decided I’m going to try it. And now I don’t understand how you couldn’t use it before. Now it goes without saying! It has made my whole working life so much easier. Once you sat there, the expectations weren’t very high, but now in retrospect it’s been magically good! Therefore, I have also recommended you to former colleagues.”
”It also becomes more believable when you get an education like this from people who have been through some hard times themselves and patted this famous wall, both once and twice maybe, and then managed to find a way that works. Then, of course, you have to distinguish between different businesses as well. For those of you who are consultants and who work with the digital means as your main workspace, you are not out carving up walls as we do. Working just like Manne and Caesar do may not work for us, but we’ve learned a lot about how we can actually use these tools to be effective. So I would argue that the whole education has been extremely well received by everyone!”
What effects have you seen at Wilzéns as a result of the education?
”I think we are more efficient today and have more structure on things, which goes hand in hand with all the other changes that we still do. I think it has already created a greater sense of consideration. That we arrive on time for our meetings and do not drop in five minutes late. It wasn’t obvious before. That we work with documenting things in a completely different way. Because all of a sudden we have the ways to do it. I think behaviors are something that feels difficult and hard to change for many. For example, it can feel a bit silly to have to check someone’s status in Teams before knocking on the person’s door, but I already notice tendencies to do it that way. We save a lot of unnecessary little interruptions by not running and checking if the person is available, running back again and so on. So once we rebuild our offices, I think it will settle even more into place.”
In addition to the training Work Smarter, Wilzéns also enlisted the help of Effektiv Nu to develop Internal Traffic Rules – guidelines for, for example, how and when to communicate with each other and which tools are best suited in different contexts, which has resulted in an implementation plan that was rolled out throughout the organization at the end of 2021.
What would you like to say to someone who is curious about testing our services?
”To use those of you who are experts in this, you know this stuff! You can help sift through and orient in this giant process map that Microsoft 365 entails. Not least now that we are actually more digital and work more at home overall, even if we don’t do it to the same extent. That Internal Traffic Rules is incredibly important! We already understood that at WSP when we moved offices and all of a sudden you went from cell offices to open landscapes. You tease yourself to death at the person who sits and talks loudly on the phone next to you! Sure, it can feel a bit cumbersome, but it’s so important with these rules, because it’s about people’s behavior towards each other. So I think if you can get your phenomenal help with just pointing out the important thing, you don’t have to use all of these applications. Getting help to see that this can be useful.”