29.09.2015 15:30

Global challenges and opportunities

During these past few months I have witnessed how global we have truly become, in our personal lives and in our careers. Local political issues, say demonstrations, can suddenly shift an organization into “exception mode”, no matter how short the unexpected event itself might be. 

These interruptions can have both negative and positive consequences. On one hand, they prevent us from focusing on current development projects; yet on the other hand, they also test our ability to react to the unexpected which, consequently, keeps us agile. In the long run, these events have the potential to help us to improve our standard procedures by incorporating useful lessons learned into daily operations. Luckily, short-lived local matters often go unnoticed in other parts of the world, thanks to skilled professionals who ensure the steady supply of goods which consumers have come to know and rely on.

One advantage of globalization is the fact that we can leverage the knowledge of our colleagues and counterparts from around the world. Global industry working groups, for instance, generate best practices and guidelines so that there are useful tools to make work easier and more efficient. One example of such body is the IATA-led Air Cargo Carbon Footprint (ACCF) working group that focuses on finding standard formats for environmental reporting in the air cargo business.

In terms of sustainability, globalization can bring about time-consuming challenges, even if the issue is not directly linked to one’s organization. Take hunting trophies or shark finning, for example. These practices often cause widespread public outcry, and can lead to additional work far removed from where the event has actually taken place. At the same time, however, these events broaden our knowledge, and make us consider a topic from different angles. This, in turn, usually leads to better-informed decision making and process improvements.

To me, the most inspiring aspect of globalization is the chance to team up with great partners from around the world who share the same goal of building something new and extraordinary. Projects that strive for excellence and innovation—such as Finnair’s initiative to build the most advanced air cargo terminal in Europe—often bring together team members from many corners of the world. In addition to producing the best possible results, this expands our cultural horizons, and brings a new flavor to daily routines. 

Wishing you a great workday—wherever you are!