Aritco’s CEO Martin Idbrant still has some reason to smile after the tough year. The elevator company, founded in 1995 in a living room in Kungsängen outside Stockholm, is now located in a state-of-the-art office where a long-awaited record was achieved as recently as May 2021. An impressive result following the major challenge of the pandemic. In the last section of the interview, Martin looks to the future and tells us about both records and why he misses coffee machine conversations with employees.
The future after Covid-19 and subtile shades
CEO Martin Idbrant: “I miss the coffee machine conversations”
Record after Aritco’s toughest year
Digital meeting place with record audience
In a global retail sector, face-to-face meetings are usually a significant factor. The pandemic made these impossible. Aritco quickly transformed to maintain the same high quality in digital communication to its important partners in 70 countries around the world. The big fire test was the digital partner conference in autumn 2020.
“We wanted to convey the same feeling of quality that we have at our events on site,” Martin explains. “We succeeded! Visual and quality with content, structure and interactivity. In the future, I see a mix of digital and personal meetings.”
The feedback was overwhelming and the feedback was that it was desired to continue with digital conferences as a complement. Other success factors were that more participants per partner could be involved because they did not need to travel to the head office in Sweden.
“It became financially justifiable. Previously, it took a lot of time and cost more to participate due to transport.”
Workplace of the future
As a workplace, Aritco has the certification “A Great Place To Work” with the selected values Innovation, Reliability and Teamwork. In the trend report “Future of the Home” that Aritco produced in collaboration with Springwise, among other things, the “home office Revolution” (The Home Office Revolution) is described and that the home office is here to stay, but Martin is hesitant that the best solution is to have a 100 percent flexible workplace.
“You can maintain and maintain a culture on a purely digital basis for a limited time. But if you want to actively change and contribute to the development of both employees and customers, a certain presence is required on site. To be able to put your arm on someone and ask: what is the situation? To be able to perceive the subtle – if someone is proud of an effort or perhaps needs support. The informal coffee machine conversations are so important. They hear about challenges and can bring people together in order to move on. I miss it.”
“Informal conversations within a group or with direct reports can be planned and conducted over the phone or Teams – informal conversations with other parts of the organisation are almost impossible to facilitate digitally.”
At the same time, Martin confirms that the workplace of the future will be expected to be more flexible.
“In order to achieve long-term, well-functioning solutions, flexibility is needed. You can do a great job, but if your equation with family, work and friends doesn’t come together, there must be an opportunity to fix it in your life puzzle.”
A long-awaited record
Regardless of the digital development, Martin believes that the physical meeting beats everything. With the shared spirit in place in the lift production at Aritco’s headquarters, a long-awaited record has recently been broken. The magical 100-bank was achieved.
“For the first time in Aritco’s history, we produced 100 lifts in a single week and then continued for quite a few weeks” concludes a proud CEO with a big smile.
Interview series with CEO Martin Idbrant
Read the two previous interviews with Martin, click on the tiles below: