Operations Talent: Talking to Henrik

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Driving operational efficiencies is always high up on the agenda, especially for businesses undergoing change. And with manufacturing companies having additional recent challenges with supply chain, there's an additional emphasis on how to make things work, and work better. It's the background to many a request from our PE firm clients and their portfolio firms and so we're asking Henrik to explain more about how he adds value to operations as an independent consultant.

Q. When you’re at a networking event, how do you describe your independent career status, and where you focus your work?

I enjoy working as an independent adviser. I’m able to apply Operational Excellence and Lean-tools as well as execute a strategic approach at the same time. Having a strong technological background favors manufacturing business, of course. Nevertheless, I worked for service providers or public services, too.

Q. What are the specific benefits that you, as an independent, offer to the operating teams/portfolio company leadership? How do you explain the value your expertise brings?

Based on my experience, my customers will have the advantage of choosing from realistic options instead of being schmoozed. When it comes to savings, my added value has been providing fact based work allowing me to achieve more than 100% of planned savings. The unique aspect of my service is not only an honest, but also straight forward approach.

Q. Why do you think there is increasing demand for independent expertise with PE operating teams?

Interim staff are available at short notice and adapt to the organisation’s problem(s). Instead of searching for the perfect company fit and negotiating contract details over weeks, interim experts evaluate whether or not they will be able to solve the problem the organization is facing. Thanks to transparent portals and recruitment agencies, PE baked firms have a variety to choose from and can place talents in a blink of an eye.

Q. Describe a recent or successful assignment in terms of scope, duration and any particular highlights in the outcomes.

Having had my contract extended twice, the 12-months assignment at a contract manufacturer was outstanding. Having reached 136% of identified savings, a lean reporting system to the board that reduced 40+ hours per week for local management and a common understanding of how to go forward were the main outcomes of my assignment.

Q. What advice would you give to anyone about to embark on an independent career as to how they can provide the best results for a client, while fulfilling their own career path?

Provide the quality of service you would be excited about purchasing yourself as a business owner. There’s no need for several dozens of slides to get a message across, but clear structure. Back to back meetings every week will not accelerate the business’ pace, but it will restrain leaders form working with their teams. If there’s a genuine interest in supporting the client, an honest evaluation of the situation will be appreciated most.

Operations talent could be crucial to your portfolio success. If you'd like to engage with talent like Henrik, post a project now, or talk to us about similar talent profiles and building talent pools for future needs.

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