Selected one of most influential leading ladies for sustainability in environmental Cleantech magazine
In Poland, Skanska has been voted the most attractive employer for many years. Katarzyna Zawodna did not know about that when a friend told her that Skanska was looking for a marketing person. But she soon realized what a company Skanska is. She applied, was hired and eight years later, she's in charge of the successful and growing Skanska Commercial Property Development in Poland.
As the Managing Director, she is responsible for developing the business and the people. She is in charge of six on-going projects, with another six in the pipeline. She started with marketing and was responsible for the Technical Quality Team and Green Business, while most recently serving as Regional Director for Region North, that is Warsaw and Poznań.
Her green efforts got her onto the cover of the Polish environmental magazine Cleantech, which selected her as one of the 12 most influential leading ladies for sustainability.
Going forward, she will promote the Activity Based Workplace concept to the Polish market. Atrium 1, where she and about 45 of the 75 people in her staff unit will be located, is designed for the new energy and space-saving concept.
The sky is not the limit
"At Skanska I got the opportunity to develop, and I took it. I was surprised that a freshman like me was so respected and treated seriously from the first day. You bring your ideas to the table, if they are good it doesn't matter who came up with them," says Katarzyna or Kasia as she is often called.
"I was always given the chance to do my best. And that is the kind of leader I want to be. I will encourage collaboration and try to inspire and empower people to do more. The sky is not the limit."
"And we have the best people. Our values, strong brand and our Swedish roots are magnets for attracting the best."
People the key to serving clients
For Kasia, people are also the key to serving the clients.
"It is not about business to business, it is about people to people. And having different people on board gives us a variety of perspectives and answers to each question. This way we can better understand the needs of our clients."
"We must also get to know them more personally. We must treat them the way they want to be treated."
In addition, delivering on your promise, having a close dialogue, listening, and proposing customized solutions are the bare necessities for long-standing client relations, according to Kasia.
Constant learning a must
But even the best have to develop to keep up pace.
"I am a strong believer in coaching, mentoring and peer-to-peer knowledge transfer. Constant learning is a must. For example, we use lessons-learned sessions on a regular basis. We can make mistakes, but not the same mistakes over and over."
"I like the saying 'If only Skanska knew what Skanska knows,' which would make us unbeatable."