Johan Sjödin celebrates 20 years with JYSK
Author: Sandra Martinsson, PR & Communications Manager, JYSK Sverige
The Swedish Country Manager Johan Sjödin celebrates 20 years with JYSK. Together with the employees in Sweden, he just finished a record year but the aim for new records in JYSK Sweden has already been set.
Twenty years ago Johan Sjödin chose to accept the offer to become a trainee at the newly established and unknown Danish retailer “JYSK Bäddlager”. Now, two decades later, he and his resume are both text book examples of JYSK’s employee promise that those who bring dedication will meet possibilities.
After being a trainee Johan became Store Manager, one year later District Manager and two years after that he took the leap to become Retail Manager. In 2005 he became Country Manager of JYSK Sweden.
“Jan Bøgh (CEO of JYSK Nordic) asked me if he was going to regret if he chose me as Country Manager. I replied: "I do not think so." Then I was thrust into the challenge. I was young and sassy and bursting with self-esteem. This will be easy, I thought. But it certainly was not. For several years it was really tough. But it has been worth it,” says Johan.
Celebrating 20 years with JYSK
Today JYSK Sweden has more than 1,500 employees and 141 stores spread across Sweden and is still growing.
“I am both proud and impressed that we managed to hold onto our JYSK DNA while growing this fast in Sweden. We have gone from being a quite unknown newcomer to becoming one of the most widespread retailers in Sweden. But we have the same corporate spirit as in the beginning,” says Johan.
Popular Country Manager
“Humble”, “goal-oriented” and “it feels like he is a colleague”. If I ask around among the employees of JYSK Sweden, they use a lot of positive adjectives to describe Johan Sjödin. His wish to be a present and inspiring Country Manager seems to be completely in line with what he radiates.
“This is something I work with all the time. It is a fine line to walk because I want the employees to feel that I am present and at the same time my role is to have an overall perspective. But it is hard because I love the store operation and struggle to keep away because as a Country Manager you cannot go into every little detail,” he says.
The competitive spirit is important
His 20 years with JYSK Sweden has gone by fast if you ask Johan. He gladly speaks about the development he has seen in JYSK during the years, about the frustration when consumer perception does not reflect the effort the company has put into product quality, and how cool it is to see the amount of stores grow - but also how the company has developed as an employer during the rapid growth.
Further on he wants to strive for continued growth with more stores and a smoother customer experience while giving employees even greater opportunities to grow within the company.
“We have to keep the motivation and the lust for competition. It has to be fun to be at work and I have to challenge those responsible for that. I do not think we will reach any of our goals if we do not work as a team and have fun together. We have to give the employees a chance to develop or try new things. I think this is super important,” says Johan.
Country Manager for JYSK Sweden since 2005.
Started in JYSK as trainee in 1998.
Has worked as Trainee, Store Manager, District Manager and Retail Manager for JYSK.
Celebrates 20 years with JYSK on 28 September.