If anyone can give an insight into Meltwater, it is Jorunn. She has been with the business since the very early days, in fact before Meltwater as we know it today existed and the company was called Magenta News.
Name: Jorunn Ekestad
Birthplace: Flekkefjord, Norway
Joined Meltwater: October 2003, Bergen Office
Current job title: Managing Director, Meltwater News, Bergen
Who inspires you: Kaveh Rostampor, Executive Director, Client Relations
My three words to describe Meltwater: Dynamic, ambitious, and together
Entering the world of work
When Jorunn sat down to decide what career she wanted to pursue after finishing her education, the lure of a sales role was drawing her in. All she needed was the right company to teach her the ropes.
“I knew that I wanted to learn sales, and when I spotted a position in this young company, with a newly opened office in Bergen, I was curious about both the position and the company. I didn’t know anything about the business before I attended the interview, but after the interview process, I knew that Meltwater was the company I wanted to work for.
The sales opportunities and the possibilities to travel that the business was offering, and the people that I met during the interview process, made this an opportunity I just had to take.”
Spreading her wings
When Jorunn was asked to give an example of a great opportunity that she had been offered during her time with Meltwater, it didn’t take her long to answer.
“By far the coolest thing I have done in Meltwater is to take the opportunity to go and live in Hong Kong for 12 months. I had never been to Asia before, let alone lived abroad. I still have a hard time trying to explain to people the culture shock and all the amazing experiences I had while I was there. It really was a fantastic opportunity for me.”
However, as Jorunn learnt, new opportunities often come with challenges.
“Luckily, I got a lot of support from Meltwater, especially from my previous manager Hanna Örtquist, who really encouraged me and pushed me to keep going. This was an opportunity that I can’t imagine being offered anywhere other than Meltwater, and I am so grateful that the company gave me the chance to do it.”
It is this kind of support that Jorunn has experienced throughout her career with Meltwater, and there is one individual that really stands out as an inspiration to her.
“I have been lucky to work with some truly impressive people at Meltwater, but the person that inspired me the most is Kaveh Rostampor (Executive Director, Client Relations). From the minute I started working with Kaveh, I have had great admiration and respect for him. Kaveh is an enthusiastic person, who has challenged me in every aspect, both professionally and also personally. He is the person at Meltwater that has pushed me outside my comfort zone the most, and I have landed on my feet every time. I have also seen how he has developed himself during these years that I have known him, which is really inspiring, and drives me to continuously want to further develop and push myself. It is individuals like Kaveh that contribute to a proactive and motivated environment at Meltwater.”
“It is also a competitive environment at Meltwater, but it is an environment of people who want to succeed – both individually and as a team. We want to strive to give the best service to our clients and, in my opinion; dealing with clients is the best part of my job, sales wise. To have a really good conversation with a client where you get their time and input, which enables you to create a great account for them – that is the best feeling!”
Jorunn is able to look back on her time with Meltwater with affection, and having grown with the business, she’s proud of the culture and the team.
“Based on my personal experience, and the other personal stories that I have witnessed, I can comfortably say to any new recruit that Meltwater is a great place to start your career after graduation. Meltwater gives you a safe and supportive environment in which to grow and develop in the areas you need to, but there is also room for mistakes. This, in addition to the opportunities on offer, makes Meltwater a great place for your first job. In fact, I have recommended Meltwater as an employer to many of my friends, and also friends of friends!”
Having climbed the ranks within Meltwater, Jorunn takes great pleasure in being the one to help others achieve the same success. “I see Meltwater as the perfect place to work for those who are ambitious, have a desire to succeed and are teachable. As a manager, I would have to say that the absolute favourite part of my job is seeing my team develop, and get closer to reaching their potential.”
Jorunn is clearly proud of Meltwater. So much so, that it’s hard for her to pinpoint just one thing about the business that stands out.
“There are so many things that make me proud to work at Meltwater! How far we have come since the start, that we are a Norwegian company, Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology, how we value people and their potential, how we work with people and invest time in them to help them succeed… I could go on and on!”
Meltwater has offered Jorunn so much support over the years, she wants to invest her time and skills back into the business.
“In five years time, I still see myself working for Meltwater. I’d like to continue in my management role – working with people, on the floor, helping them to succeed by fulfilling their strengths!
I have been given opportunities at Meltwater that I would not have been given anywhere else. I have learned how to do business in Asia, I am now fluent in English, and have had so many experiences! In addition I have developed a lot, both personally and professionally. I am aware of my strengths and weaknesses, and know what I need to be able to succeed. All this is thanks to Meltwater.”