Swedish ‘fika’ culture was an eye-opener

Limin Liang took part in a global graduate program that included a rotation at Kanthal where she now works. “The experience has motivated me to think about what kind of person I want to be in the future and how I can support people around me and help them to grow,” she says.

As the daughter of an electronics-enthusiast father and restaurant finance manager mother, Limin’s choice of education made sense. She completed a bachelor’s degree in electromechanical engineering followed by a master’s in international business and management economics, both in Leuven, Belgium.

During her rotation at Kanthal, she worked with identifying opportunities in the electric vehicle market. Upon completing the graduate program she took employment with the strategic business development team. And she accepted an invitation from colleagues in the R&D department to join their band Lab Rock – a spin on “labbrock”, which means lab coat in Swedish.

Limin describes her initial encounters with Swedish work culture as an eye-opener. Especially the afternoon breaks when everyone, including the top management, sits down for “fika” – a coffee and cinnamon buns tradition that’s non-negotiable. “I felt like we were eating all the time,” she says. “It brought a different perspective because fika creates an atmosphere that encourages us to get know each other better.”

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