Name: Nadja Apwisch
Title: Head of Validation
Degree: MSc Engineering Management
- Introduce yourself, and share a fun fact that makes you unique!
My name is Nadja Apwisch and I’m 35 years old. I have studied Engineering Management (MSc) at DTU (incl. one semester study abroad in Australia) and Medicine and Technology (BSc) at DTU and Copenhagen University.
Fun fact: I love challenging myself, and sometimes it becomes quite an adrenaline rush e.g. through skydiving, bungee jumping, river rafting and diving.
- What does a day in your life look like as a Head of Validation at Coloplast?
A lot of my days are focused on being present and there for my team members, planning department tasks and objectives and helping remove obstacles from my team, where possible. I also have a lot of interaction with a wide range of stakeholders both at our Danish site but also cooperation with our internal manufacturing sites. All of it I find very exciting and motivating, and I enjoy that my days are never the same.
- What motivates and excites you the most about your career path and the leadership position you hold?
I love working with people with various backgrounds and interests. It energizes me having a great cooperation, figuring out what motivates people, continuing to learn and making each other better.
- Share with us the biggest lessons you learned on your journey to where you are today.
There have been so many great learnings throughout my journey. Of course your skillset / expertise is a foundation for successfully fulfilling your actual tasks, but I’ve learned and seen how important stakeholder management and communication skills also are to succeed in your daily job. I’ve been given a lot of exciting challenges at Coloplast and the key to solving them has often been through clear planning and communication, great cooperation with the team members across functions, while also ensuring that we had fun on the way. Even in crisis situations we kept the motivation high and worked greatly together to achieve the best outcome.
- Tell us about a (female) role model who inspired you to become the leader you are today, and how (s)he impacted you personally or professionally.
One of the female role models who inspired me to be a leader, is one I met in Coloplast in my very early days. I met her at an event at DTU and later on she became my master thesis advisor at Coloplast. Her drive and ability to always be on point has always inspired me greatly. Her way of clearly communicating, inspiring others and openness are some of the attributes I hope to be associated with as a leader in the future.
- If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self, or to other young female students today, what would it be?
Don’t be too hard on yourself and don’t only focus on what you can do better. Instead remember to also focus on the things that go well and what you succeed at. By focusing on both what you do well and why, while also spotting areas for improvements and blind spots I believe that you can continue growing and becoming a better version of yourself. And don’t forget, your development will continue throughout your life.
- How do you see STEM education shaping the future?
Educations including STEM obviously provide a great set of technical skills, but maybe even more importantly it provides the opportunity to develop problem solving, critical thinking and an analytic mindset which I see as extremely valuable assets now and in the future.
- Why is it important for you to promote diversity and inclusion within STEM?
I think that we through diversity and inclusiveness can get some of the best results. Listening and ensuring everyone is being heard, continuing to be curious to learn and being open to different viewpoints, perspectives etc is something I think is very important in your daily life. I enjoy meeting people with a different mindset than my own, as it gives me a new perspective and learning on how to approach a task / situation in a new way.
- What steps do you see that your company has taken to promote a more diverse and inclusive workplace?
It’s something that is voiced by our management, focused on through training material and mentioned in different work settings. I therefore feel that Coloplast has very high focus on diversity and inclusiveness through various initiatives and I’m very happy to be a part of a company that has high attention on these aspects.