Today, I will present to some 140 people at an event in Stockholm called Frukostklubben (The breakfast club), a network of talented people. The topic is how IFS works with innovations—how we quickly turn ideas into real products and get them out on the market. And I will share my trips and tricks about how companies and individuals can be more innovative.
Putting it simply, there are things you need to succeed in sport, music, relations, business or whatever you are up to—passion and courage. You need passion to fill you with energy so you don’t give up and courage to believe in your idea or vision, because many people won’t. And they will tell you.
IFS develops and delivers world-class business software and we are totally dependent on the passion and courage of our employees and partners. Success can, of course, be measured in numbers, but equally important is how employees rate their place to work. This is a long-term success factor.
IFS is among the top ten of Sweden’s best workplaces for the fifth year in a row, and that puts us in the hall of fame for Great Place to Work.
What defines a great place to work?
I would say that the most important aspect is a positive culture; trust in management and a good relationship with colleagues. But also that you like what you are working with, both your own work tasks, and that you feel proud of the product or service you produce or represent.
Why is IFS a great place to work?
Over the years in all surveys—internal or external—we always get a high rating on our culture and people. This is the main area, I would say. People—customers, partners and colleagues—feel welcome; a very friendly and positive atmosphere. It’s a culture where people help each other and share challenges with each other, internally as well as externally.
But there are other important ingredients also. If you look at the feedback and comments we get, they could be summarized into the following areas. People are seen and heard, and can therefore have an influence. Flexibility and freedom under responsibility, both build on trust in people. Professional and responsible colleagues, challenging work assignments in an international environment. IFS is an organization that strives for continuous improvements that lead to a successful company and a world-class product.
Status quo is not an option, so how do we retain this top position?
We need to stay proactive and try to nurture the positive elements. I think it’s very much about a mindset from management at all levels to always seek areas for improvement throughout the company and a will to develop, to move forward. That ambition, combined with the ability to listen to the organization internally as well as understanding what goes on externally in the market, is certainly important in order to keep on being seen as a great place to work.