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Angelica Keeps Track of both Friends and Foes

6 min read

Angelica has a background in economics, but she currently develops the high-tech system that, together with one the world’s most advanced fighter aircraft, differentiates friends from foes in the air. And that’s basically all she’s permitted to say about it.

Even though many thing are secret in Angelica’s daily work, it is not the secrecy or any type of introverted company culture that motivates her to come to work every day. On the contrary, Angelica feels anything but closed-off and inaccessible, and she describes Saab similarly – as an open and transparent workplace where you succeed by communicating with one another. And her enthusiasm and joy are is easily spread to her colleagues and workplace.

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“I have the opportunity to work with different combinations of teams that have different cultures. I also work closely with the customers who use our products as well as with subcontractors and partners, both within Sweden and internationally. This is probably why I enjoy working at Saab – the variation and the opportunity for continuous development.”

The reason Angelica enjoys working at Saab is the variation and the opportunity for continuous development.
"This is probably why I enjoy working at Saab – the variation and the opportunity for continuous development.”

Please turn off your phone and other electronic devices…

Phones and other electronics are often left outside the room where Angelica and her team are working. This, of course has to do with the fact that they are working with Gripen. With cutting-edge technology that gives an informational advantage in the air and one the most sophisticated electronic warfare systems in the world, Gripen is therefore referred to as “The Game Changer”. You may think that one would have to have a Master of Science degree to work on the development of this product, but Angelica is proof that this is not necessarily the case.

Angelica earned a Business degree from Linköping University, and her journey in Saab started eight years ago through the Saab’s Graduate Leadership Programme. Today she works with the development of Gripen’s unique and mission-critical (as it is called in the industry) system for “Identification Friend or Foe”. It’s exactly what it sounds like: A system that detects who in the air are allied and who are not.
Can she tell us more about it? The answer is no.

Multi-tasker sought

Over the 13 months of the Saab Graduate Leadership Programme, Angelica got an overview of Saab’s products and business areas, as well as good insight into the fact that you can work with different things in different areas within such a large company that Saab is. She quickly built up a network of inspiring and talented colleagues, both in Sweden and around the world.

“I’m motivated by being in an environment where many things are happening and when I have fun at work."

Over the years, she has taken on multiple roles and assignments at Saab. No matter the challenge, Angelica always demonstrates her receptiveness and enthusiasm, and acts as a source of inspiration. She enjoys work the most when she is able to coordinate and act as “a spider in the web” but she also wishes that she had the ability to, “truly be a multi-tasker”.

“I’m motivated by being in an environment where many things are happening and when the tempo is high with many touchpoints to coordinate. Of course, it’s also important that I have fun at work, because that’s how I get the energy and motivation to do my best.”

Given her drive, it should come as no surprise that when she travels it is not to be able to relax at the poolside, but to engage in outdoor activities and exercise – preferably CrossFit, running and cross-country skiing. In short: everything that gives her energy.

Angelica feel both happy and proud when she can see a team spirit, where we all help out, are open and talk to each other, work towards the same goals, see opportunities and have fun.
“I feel both happy and proud when I can see a team spirit, where we all help out, are open and talk to each other, work towards the same goals, see opportunities and have fun.”

Success through teamwork

Angelica has been a project manager for IFF within Gripen C/D for just over a year. Something that suits her well since she loves team sports and thinks teamwork is important. This, combined with feeling that she makes a difference in her daily work, is what makes her happy to go to work each morning.

“I feel both happy and proud when I can see a team spirit, where we all help out, are open and talk to each other, work towards the same goals, see opportunities and have fun. An important part of my work is to do everything I can to create this team spirit.”

“There are so many opportunities for variation. I am not surprised that some of my colleagues have worked at Saab their entire careers.”

Angelica feels there is a culture and acceptance within the Saab regarding the importance of achieving a work-life balance among employees. But one of the things she appreciates most about her employer is the fact that so many opportunities exist for variation and development. This recently was shown when Angelica was offered a position as acting manager, something she did not hesitate to accept.

“There are so many opportunities for variation. The fact that I now got the chance to step into a manager position for a period is really a proof of that, as long as you are clear in your ambition and the possibility is given there are a great deal om opportunities. I am not surprised that some of my colleagues have worked at Saab their entire careers.”

3 questions

The best thing about Saab: There are so many opportunities for variation and development at Saab. I can work broadly and generally in one role and then, in another role, I can work somewhat more narrowly and focused, such as on a subsystem. In addition, I feel there is a culture and acceptance within the company regarding the importance of achieving a work-life balance, which I also tend to emphasise as one of Saab’s strengths.

Your best advice to a potential colleague: I have always found it easy to connect with people. I believe that might be the reason why asking for help never has been an issue for me. I would say that it has been a success factor for me in many occasions. That is why I would give the advice to reach out to your colleagues and ask questions and above all, have the courage to ask for help. If you are curious and interested there are so many people that gladly will help out if asked the question.

Appreciates: Outdoor activities and exercise – preferably CrossFit, running and cross-country skiing. Best if combined with traveling together with friends or family.