In family companies, values often intensify in a positive way in a crisis. According to a recent Newsweek article, family businesses have on average also survived the financial crisis better than other companies.
The crisis has kept its grip on the Koskisen Group for quite a long time, and even at the time of writing this article, co-determination negotiations are taking place. The change is further complicated by the fact that we are working in a capital-intensive industry that is going through a transformation.
We have had to shrink our traditional thinking from a quarter of a century to a quarter of a year, in order to be able to safely cross the stream and continue on our100-year path without getting our feet wet. This is a challenging situation for us all – but also an opportunity for growth.
Koskisen’s new vision emphasises customer focus and renewal. The vision gives us strength to seize new opportunities and engage in a new kind of thinking, which is also what the industry needs more of in general. Philosopher Maija-Riitta Ollilasays very aptly in her book Johtajan parempi elämä that Finland has no chance of being a winner in the future unless we take on a new role at the vanguard of development. The role should express the act of being small, agile and progressive.
In addition, the Country Brand Delegation recently noted that “considering its small size, Finland has an unbelievable array of strengths and opportunities to solve some of the world’s most wicked global problems”.
Similarly, Koskisen is still a small (or in fact, quite a large) integrated company, where an open, customer-focussed mindset is a driver of progressive thinking. This also provides us with agility to react to changing external economic forecasts. While reading this magazine, I hope you will notice that there is a “wind in the willows” at Koskisen. There have been changes in the sales channels, the customer offering is fervently being developed and we are challenging our own processes and ways of thinking. Unchanging, however, are our commitment to wood and our values, which are surprisingly close to the strengths stated in Finland’s country brand. Courage, creativity and trust also ensure the profitability required to implement changes and reforms.
We wish all our readers a happy 2011!