Article

Tugce Ljungholm – Making sense of the data so we can all work smarter

29 Oct 2020

Hi, Tugce. Can you tell us a little about what your job entails day-to-day.

I’m focused on what kinds of insights I can create from our data and how I can make it easier for our people to do the same. I work across every area of the Avinode business, from the customer service and marketing teams to the commercial, CX and product teams. Ultimately, it’s about finding ways for us to use data to make better decisions. 

And you gained your expertise in a very different industry.

Yeah, I previously worked in retail. I began my career at Nielsen, measuring retail and FMCG products in supermarkets. Then, with the world becoming more digital, I moved into ecommerce with the Alibaba company in Turkey. After moving to Sweden with my Swedish husband, I kickstarted my career here. And seven months ago, I joined Avinode.

How did you find the move from retail into aviation?

It was a steep learning curve for sure, and quite a scary move for me. I felt confident working in retail, but sometimes that’s the point when you stop learning new things. It was definitely a good move for me to make a change.

And the way our sector works must be quite different too.

In lots of ways, yeah. Firstly, aviation is very interesting because right now we can see supply and demand together, which means the data is there for me to connect and create value from.

And secondly, unlike in retail, there’s a real tech mindset. At Avinode, we don’t say we are a commercial company, we’re a tech company that provides tech solutions to our customers. Everyone is focused on adding value through tech by being agile and working smarter and faster in a more automated way. 

I love that everything we do has a purpose. This is super important because it means I can adopt more technology to my role compared to the other places I’ve worked.

How have you found the Swedish work culture compared to that in Turkey?

In Turkey it’s an extremely competitive culture. There’s a lot of pressure, very long hours, and people are not always super-friendly compared to Swedish people. Another difference is that here at Avinode they value personal development, employee health and wellbeing. 

I was talking to my Turkish friends recently and telling them that the best thing I have right now is freedom to do my job. I’m trusted for my capabilities, I have all the resources I need and I’m free to collaborate with other people who love what they do.

Talking of collaboration, that’s made a little more difficult by working remotely.

Definitely. Because of COVID I’ve been working from home since starting at Avinode, which has been hard. I’ve been into the office maybe five or six times in total, that’s it. I’ve learned a lot during this time about communicating with people, but everyone has been so friendly. I’ve also been researching as much about the industry as possible, just reading and talking to people.

Finally, I hear you’re quite handy with a sword.

That’s right! I’m currently learning how to fence. I’m not super good just yet but it’s an interesting sport. Because I’m quite short I need to be fast, agile and strategic to calculate every situation quickly. There are a lot of parallels with my job, it’s just that with fencing I’m constantly evaluating my opponent, not the numbers.

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