Meet an employee: Sales Director Jarmo Pohjola

“At the end of the day this is still a people-to-people business with a common goal of building profitable growth for both parties.”

I always introduce myself as a salesman. It is what I have done with several responsibilites and titles – and now as Sales Director in Conaxess Trade Finland for the last 6 years. I have joined Conaxess in 2005, and in total I have over 30 years of expertise from sales. I am responsible for Conaxess Trade Finland’s retail business, together with the best sales team (5 Key Account Managers, 2 Field Sales Managers, 15 Sales Representatives and 2 Sales Coordinators).

The best part of my job is continuously learning and acknowledging that the only constant in life is change. Working at Conaxess Trade challenges you on a regular basis, because existing and new brands from different categories require quick learning and understanding of different business approaches. I have a big share of responsibility, but on the other hand I also have plenty of possibilities to influence the way of working.

I also really enjoy cooperating with our customers, and they are valuable teachers with their feedback. At the end of the day this is still people-to-people business with a common target to build profitable growth for both parties. Being professional, honest and respectful is always the starting point for a good business partnership. In the distributor business we at Conaxess Trade are used to changes, often on a tight time span, and we have implemented clear processes to handle it.

If it was easy, everyone would do it

Sales success is my motivator, and getting good results is definitely based on seamless teamwork. My responsibility is to create circumstances for the whole team to be able to develop themselves and be successful.

For the past years there have been enormous changes which challenge us all – in the whole retail business and the society overall. Covid-19 forced everybody to make huge digital steps and adopt remote work. “New normal” is soon ahead when the society opens up. Travelling, remote work and work premises must be rethought. Key learnings must be adapted to serve the business, customers and employees in the best possible way.

In retail business concentration has increased during the last 20 years, but there is still room for new successful businesses. E-commerce is a growing sector, heavily driven by remote work. This new way of shopping daily groceries creates a platform for new companies in the Finnish market.

Suppliers need to understand, respect and adapt to all customers’ strategies. We at Conaxess Trade are trustworthy, dedicated, flexible, and innovative, which are key characteristics to be winners in today’s business. Retail is tough business, but if it was easy, everybody would do it.

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