February 7, 2020

Sales work at Adven equals creating value for the customer and challenging oneself

When I initially joined Adven, my intention was to accumulate a few years of experience, because I thought that, as an entrepreneur-minded person, I would not enjoy working for someone else for very long. I could not have been more wrong…

I have been with this company for more than seven years now and I have been able to reach my full potential. A sales position at Adven is the place to be for a person who wants to accomplish a lot, create value for customers and challenge themselves every day – and to be rewarded for the results of their work.

VP, New Industrial Sales and Solutions, Olavi Raunio

A few years ago, an industrial customer requested a proposal for an energy plant that would produce renewable energy to meet their growing energy needs. After analysing their situation, I realised that there was also another option. Instead of building a new energy plant, we proposed to the customer that their energy consumption could be halved without it affecting their production. This would be possible thanks to energy-efficient evaporation.

No one else provided this as a service, at least not in the Nordic countries, and perhaps not in the entire world, and this kind of service was neither part of Adven’s plans at that time.

Even though I had only been a sales manager for a short time, my suggestions were heard, because they resulted in good business – for both Adven and the customer. This process led to us establishing a whole new business area based on closed cycles. Today, a significant part of the investment projects carried out by Adven for its customers are evaporation projects – which have their origins in a single sales manager’s idea that was born out of his love for his job.

This exemplifies what sales work at Adven is about. A sales manager’s work is like conducting an orchestra, building a value-creating solution for the customer in a sales project with the help of the entire Adven organisation. We must always be able to offer something better than the existing solution – we do not transfer money from one pocket to another, sell at a higher price or replace a solution with a similar one; instead, we always provide a better solution.

Curiosity can take you far

You can do well as a salesperson if you know how to identify hidden needs and opportunities, make the customer aware of them and bring the right people together to develop advanced solutions for these needs. We have a unique culture with plenty of room for ideas. Our projects are also always significant in financial terms. They are typically long, and in a year or two we may only scratch the surface. A single sales project usually lasts between one to four years.

In a capital-intensive sector, it is difficult to become an entrepreneur: if you lack sufficient investment capacity, you cannot establish an energy plant. With Adven, however, it is possible to work in an entrepreneurial spirit without incurring the risks inherent in entrepreneurship. And if they bring results, salespersons can also earn twice as much as they would in alternative expert positions.

Over the past four years, Adven’s sales team has quadrupled in size. We are united in our passion for this job and the huge importance of each and every project. We can make the most ambitious visions come true, with the certainty that acquiring financing or building a team without capital will not form bottlenecks. We can focus on the core task.

Managing the big picture is easier if you have both the technical and financial expertise related to the profitability and feasibility of investment projects. Passion and curiosity can make up for many things – whereas no amount of technical expertise can make up for the lack of passion and curiosity.

The author, Olavi Raunio, VP, New Industrial Sales and Solutions, joined Adven in 2012 as a Sales Manager after working for 10 years as an energy consultant, technology commercialiser and entrepreneur. He developed the Recovery business area based on closed industrial cycles for the company. He has been responsible for both Recovery sales and the sales of other industrial energy services since 2015. Today, Olavi is head of Adven Group’s industrial sales and solutions in the Nordics and the Baltic countries as well as exports sales to other European countries. The number of investment projects carried out by Adven for its customers since the beginning of 2015 has quintupled.

Interested in a career in sales at Adven?

Read also: As a salesperson at Adven, I contribute to more sustainable energy production

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Adven is the leading provider of energy and water services across the Nordic and Baltic countries.