VEO at heart and mind
But where does VEO come into the picture? Jari got to know a couple of VEO employees during his Energy MBA studies and said yes to a meeting – just out of curiosity – when he was contacted from VEO. Even though he was not looking for a new job, he soon understood that VEO could be the missing link he had been waiting for. “There was the connection to the energy field, together with energy efficient solutions and hydropower, which is an important business segment for VEO”, says Jari. Hydropower is close to Jari’s heart, not only because of his former work but also because of his childhood. “They built a hydropower plant near my family’s farm and led the river across our lands. As a boy, I used to sneak into the power plant to see how it worked.” Even Jari’s family name Vataja in Finnish bears the meaning ‘the place where the river is the broadest’. And If you ask about his spare time interests, yes, he loves to go fishing, too.
Happy and motivated employees lead to success
Another reason why Jari chose to come to VEO is that he now has the chance to lead the unit in his own way and influence its processes. “VEO has some growing pains because of its rapid growth but the opportunities overweigh them manifold”, says Jari. According to him, the core of VEO is made of talented engineers and individuals, who work as a team, are proud of their know-how and excited about their work. Jari sees that it is his duty to ensure that the employees are happy and thrive in their work. All guidelines must be clear and concern everyone equally, but at the same time, the company must have competitive strength. Jari admits that he already has some ideas on how to ensure that: “Energy storing, key account models and expanded after-sales services are some of the questions that we should look into and discuss.”
In the future, Jari believes that VEO will be an even bigger player with a major increase in turnover and operations in new segments and countries. The most important challenge will be the one that the whole energy industry shares – how to recruit and keep enough skilled electricity and automation engineers. That is where Jari’s, as well as other segment directors’ managing skills play a significant role. “For me, getting positive feedback from the employees and accomplishing things are the best possible rewards for my work. Being able to bring the whole Vaasa region forward as a part of the global energy business and green energy solutions also come as a nice bonus.”