When Helena Nyqvist was little, she dreamed of working in a corner shop. The food industry fascinated her and she loved listening to old stories about the village store that her grandparents once ran. During her studies she carried home countless bags of shopping from Willys and when she graduated it felt like the perfect company to join.Why did you apply for their trainee programme?
I liked Willys’ discount concept and knew that this was where I wanted to work. However, as a newly qualified business studies graduate, I found it hard to know what job would suit me. As a trainee, I got to try out a whole range of different jobs, while also gaining an overview of the whole group. Axfood also includes store concepts such as Tempo, Snabbgross and Hemköp.What did the programme involve?
We had a lot of in-store work experience. The stores are the foundation of our business and it was excellent to see how the decisions taken in the offices were then put into practice. We had many different projects, the most exciting of which was when we had to increase sales at Hemköp by redesigning the store. Alternating with the work experience, we also had several courses on everything from internal systems to personal development. Over the year, we had two supervisors and one career coach to support us.What conclusions did you come to?
I found out that marketing was what I wanted to do. Over the year, we talked about what would suit me and in September 2008 I started working as campaign manager at Willys’ marketing department in Gothenburg.Has your year as a trainee proved useful?
My job now is to create attractive customer offers by keeping to our business mission: Sweden’s cheapest bag of groceries. I’m the link between the suppliers, the purchasing department and the customers. During my year as a trainee, I built up a network of contacts that I now use on a daily basis.