Name: Ville Ritakorpi
Title: Sales and Marketing Director
Education: Bachelor of Science in Technology
How long have you been working here: 13 years
Motto: Focus on the essentials, be creative and challenge yourself.
Ville Ritakorpi, originally from Kankaanpää, jumped to work directly from the school bench. Promeco has trained him the professional he is now.
Ville Ritakorpi’s story is classic: while studying at the Tampere University of Technology, he received an appealing job offer from Promeco and did not have time to graduate. Ville already knew Promeco from his previous summer jobs. One summer, he even replaced the Production Manager and got to know the post and the work well. That experience made his decision easy.
– I was hired as a Project Manager and was responsible for the production, scheduling, and other management tasks of one of the larger clients. My duties included presenting our operations to the customer’s representatives and handling purchases. I learned a lot during that job, both in tools and working methods. The customer work I got to do has motivated me ever since.
Three years later, Ville’s supervisor offered Ville an opportunity to start Promeco’s newly completed Polish plant. After a year and a half of an enlightening experience in Poland, Ville returned to Kankaanpää, this time as a Sales Manager.
– I got more and more interested in sales in Poland, where I got to work with suppliers and customers. I was able to customize my duties with the approval of my employer.
In between, Ville worked a short while in a similar post for another company. When Promeco’s factory manager contacted him and asked for his interest in returning, he said yes. He was then sent together with a colleague to develop operations at a plant in Poland, where the situation had become inflamed. In his role as a Development Manager, he led an organizational reform. In three years, operations grew so that business doubled.
– Those three years made me grow as a professional. I also learned a lot about how people work in different cultures.
A company with a low hierarchy
Ville has now been back at the Kankaanpää office for about three years. A month after returning from Poland, he was promoted to Sales Director.
According to Ville, one of the best aspects of Promeco is the straightforward corporate culture and flexibility. Employers are willing to listen to staff’s thoughts and take their wishes into account.
– You can concentrate on things where you feel at your best. There is no principled braking, and even fast actions are possible. The hierarchy is low, and employees dare to criticize if the situation calls for it.
Ville gives an example of an open discussion culture: During his secondment to Poland, while still in the position of a Development Manager, he got to talk to management about an industry that was not making a reasonable profit for the company at that time. His supervisors listened to his opinions and made the necessary changes based on joint discussions.
– I did not have a relevant position, but my supervisors saw that I could have something to say about it. I dared to speak out because the corporate culture does not punish for making mistakes. On the contrary, it encourages everyone to try.
Motivation from success
Ville’s typical workday as a Sales Director consists of various meetings, sparring, outlining the overall sales picture and developing operations. The sales team has eight employees, two of them in Poland. Ville himself has 2-3 customers of his own, which keeps him up to date.
Succeeding with a client gives him motivation.
– Closing a deal is a long process that involves a lot of uncertainty and excitement. Getting the job done is rewarding, as is the feedback you receive from the client. On the other hand, failures also teach you something.
Ville encourages everyone to apply for a job at Promeco, even if one has not yet found his specialty. As someone who has joined Promeco directly from the school bench, he knows that the company takes even novices seriously.
– What we value most is a broad vision. You do not necessarily need in-depth knowledge of any specialty. Width is more important than depth. Here you can grow in the direction you choose.