Insider – meet Mr. André Trommestad
Would you like to know what it's like to work at ABAX? We have interviewed Engineering Manager - Application Support and Development, Mr. André Trommestad. He explains why it`s so attractive to work with Tech at ABAX and how he manages to motivate his team so brilliant that they`re now one of the best in the whole industry.
Sense of ownership and a fantastic work environment
André Trommestad is 40 years old, and has worked at ABAX since 2012. When asked why he`s so happy at ABAX, the words “fantastic corporate culture” are the first ones that comes to his mind:
– The people who work at ABAX are unique. The environment is positive and enthusiastic, and I am constantly challenged with new, exciting work tasks and areas of responsibility. Being able to influence the company in a positive direction and create profitability clearly gives me a sense of ownership of the company. The culture and values we appreciate at ABAX reflect my private core values well. One of the things that makes me want to work here for many more years, is that I feel that I make a difference - that I contribute in giving the company great success.
Three important milestones burned into a career memory
After 8 years at ABAX, there are three milestones in particular that André Trommestad would like to highlight when it comes to his own career in the company. The first was when he was promoted to team leader:
– I will never forget the day when I was promoted to be a Team leader. It was a goal I had set for myself, so it was a great feeling. The next milestone was when I was nominated to Team Leader of the Year. I was nominated 4 years in a row, and when I finally won the award, I was very proud. Not just on my own behalf, but on behalf of my entire team.
This is clearly an award that the whole team achieve together, and I have been lucky to have team members who are motivated, dedicated and have a strong desire to be one of ABAX's best teams, Trommestad continues.
– When it comes to developing my own leadership skills, the internal training program under the auspices of the ABAX Performance department was a big eye opener for me that represents a milestone too. It gave me valuable insight and understanding of all parts of ABAX as an organization. In addition, I received personal coaching in a manager's daily tasks. Overall, the program has truly helped me in the process of becoming the leader I am today.
– Some of the things I focus on in my work on a daily basis are supportive leadership, teamwork, feedback culture, performance management, value-based management, MAKISE and following ABAX's models and tools to increase performance.
The ability to link leadership theories to practice, reflect on my own experiences and have a mindset that I always have something to learn has helped me to become who I am today, both at the workplace and in private life, the Team Leader continues.
The three most important focus areas of a working day
André Trommestad has varied working days, but there are three areas he chooses to focus on every single day. Following up on his teams is one of them:
– I focus on creating a healthy feedback culture, encouraging desired behaviour, addressing unwanted behaviour, adjusting direction to the company's goals, creating ownership of the team's goals, creating individual career plans and making plans for personal development for everyone on the team.
– We have daily “stand up” meetings where we go through what was done the previous day, what is today's plan and whether there are any factors that prevent us in progress. These meetings are a great way to get an overview, and identify whether there are other tasks that are more profitable or should be given higher priority. Every other week we have a “retrospective” meeting where we identify everything that has worked and what can be done better. Everyone on the team gives their vote on what should be addressed. Then we create follow-up tasks to improve ourselves in these particular areas.
– Once a week we have a status meeting where we review results, status of each project and how we are doing in relation to our goals, KPIs and SLAs. If the team has something it want to bring to the management team, the status meeting is the right forum to bring it up in. It’s important to have fun at work and create an enthusiastic work environment, and not least to express gratitude for the value each team member gives the company. We set clear goals, and create a sense of ownership within both the team and our personal goals. At ABAX, we stand together as a team, regardless of whether we succeed or fail.
The second area Trommestad focuses on is responsibility. ABAX has its own KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) and SLA (Service Level Agreement) which are followed up daily. He says:
– We have weekly management meetings where I present last week's results. At the same time, I report progress to the rest of the management team and to the administration. To have 100% control of numbers is a passion for me! Good understanding about numbers as well as how they are affected by various events in the company makes it easier to plan ahead and easier to adjust quickly if the level of performance drops. Not to forget, good numbers make a fantastic reason to celebrate when the team delivers better than expected!
– The department I lead is the technology section's external face. The quality of the work we perform affects the entire section. We remove distractions from the Tech teams by processing all incoming requests to the section. We ensure that the right person is delegated the right task, and we ensure that the task does not delay other important initiatives that the section works with. We make a priority on all incoming requests, and ensure that the request that is most important gets the highest priority. We take care of all communication with other sections and departments regarding planned updates, incidents that occur and other technological updates that other departments need to be informed about so that they can do their job effectively.
André Trommestads third focus area is about going beyond his own area of responsibility in ABAX and making a difference. He describes it like this:
– At ABAX, we are always looking for ways to work smarter, and create new tools that make our own and other departments' everyday lives as efficient as possible. The goal is to discover and solve cases proactively. By having a strong focus on structure, working smarter and delivering more than expected, the employees are constantly challenged with more responsibility.
This is why you should aim for an exciting career in Tech at ABAX
Trommestad claims that those who are looking for the dream job should look for a job at ABAX:
– The tech industry is blooming, and it will continue to grow in the future. There is always something new to learn in tech. It's not just coding that applies when working in the technology industry - there is a wide set of skills needed. If you do have a passion for coding, it's not like you have to write code in one language for one project all the time. At ABAX, employees are often given the opportunity to participate in different kind of projects. In this way, the employees at ABAX continuously expand their knowledge and become attractive when new projects and new career possibilities turn up.
– Some say that working in the technology industry gives a feeling of being surrounded by optimism. When it comes to ABAX, this is completely correct! Working in the technology industry means that you can have a great influence on the company you work for, and get the opportunity to make a mark on people's everyday lives.
André Trommestads career at ABAX
When André Trommestad started at ABAX in 2012, he was given the title Senior Software Developer. Gradually, the company became more and more curious about the Scrum methodology. In 2014, Trommestad was assigned to combine the two roles Senior Software Developer and Scrum Master.
In 2015, he was promoted to Team Leader for 8 developers. In the same year, he was selected as one of 12 employees to participate in ABAX's Ambassador program. He completed the program the same year. He was then nominated for the title Leader of the Year 4 years in a row, in 2016, 2017 and 2018 before nominated and winning the award in 2019.
In 2018, Trommestad was promoted to head his own department, Application Support and Development. The department was newly established, but Trommestad received good coaching from the CTO and benefited from previous experiences from his role as Senior Software Director.
In 2020, his title was changed to Engineering Manager with responsibility for leading the same department. The department has now increased from one to two teams with their own areas of responsibility and projects. At the same time, Mr. Trommestad has been given responsibility for projects/areas outside his own department. GDPR, Incident management, penetration testing and ERP integration are examples of projects/areas he has been assigned to lead in the recent months.
André Trommestad was named ABAX Leader of the Year in 2019.
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