"It's all about multiple skills and working together"

​Piia Pellinen's career at Metsä Fibre's Joutseno pulp mill began with a summer job at a relatively young age. The past quarter of a century has given Piia a chance to see and learn a lot.

4/2020

​WHAT GOT YOU INTERESTED IN THE FOREST SECTOR?

After comprehensive school, I was interested in getting profession, and therefore headed to vocational school. My education at the vocational school focused on production processes and in 1994 I got a summer job from Joutseno pulp mill. And the rest, as they say, is history.

I've worked here in the drying department since 2000. Funnily enough, the department is located in the same building where I worked during that summer job.

In the old days, one person took care of only one job, whereas nowadays it's all about multiple skills and working together.


WHAT'S YOUR JOB LIKE?

I work as a process operator at the pulp drying machine. In our department it's dried, cut into sheets and baled, so that handling, storing and transporting it is easier. Most of our pulp ends up to customers around the world. My job is to monitor the process and make sure that everything works as it should.

 

WHAT'S THE BEST THING ABOUT YOUR WORK?

A great team of colleagues is a big plus. I'm perfectly happy that no shift is ever the same. I have a day off after four morning shifts, and that's followed up by four evening shifts and then another day off. Then I have four night shifts and six days off.

When my shift ends, the next person takes over. I hope I can keep working until retirement age.

This job is a good match for someone like me who is active and outgoing. I've never felt like an outsider, even though I'm the only woman in my department. I can remember only one occasion when someone found my gen- der surprising. I had just started in my summer job, when some guy came to check if he was seeing things right – that a young, small woman was truly driving a big forklift.

 

WHAT ARE YOUR VALUES IN TERMS OF WORK?

The forest industry has significant importance for Finland and it's great to be a part of it. I try to do my best that the following shift can start their work smoothly.

Although I haven't given any serious thought to changing my unit, I want to develop and learn new things. Continuous learning and development increase my job's meaningfulness and my motivation.

 

WHAT DO YOU DO TO RELAX?

I do need to get outdoors and enjoy nature. I do nordic walking or go for a walk with our dog. I never listen to music while I'm on a walk; I just enjoy the sound of the wind and nature in general. Relaxing outdoors also improves well-being at work.

I'm also into yoga, but my kids' hobbies take up most of my free time. I have three children and two of them are active in orienteering.

 

WHAT DO YOU DREAM ABOUT?

I hope that my family stays healthy, particularly my life's greatest achievements, my children Max, Mona and Mea. I hope that I can live as happy a life as possible.

 

DO YOU HAVE ANY LIFE WISDOM YOU CHERISH?

You don't have to like everybody, but you do need to get along. This is something I tell my children, too.

Related articles