Kristina, Innovation PCM Biscuits Europe, Warsaw
I studied corporate economics and management in Prague and started at Mondelēz International during my last year of university, initially in the Master Data department. After a couple of years in this role I became a Product Change Manager (PCM) in chocolate, with responsibility mostly for the Czech- Slovak market, a job I Enjoyed I'm now an Innovation PCM Biscuits, Europe, based in Warsaw.
What does a Product Change Manager do?
My day to day tasks involves interesting discussions and co-operation with diverse cross-functional teams, following a series of steps to take a product or a package from the idea to the shelf.
When working for the chocolate business, I was involved in as many as 30 or more projects at any time, though I wasn't leading on all of them. Now I have around 10 or 11, and the majority of these are new product development projects, or the projects with some harmonisation or quality improvement aspects which are influencing a lot of countries in Europe.
What makes this role great is that, you are learning majority of time. Working with people from cultures and functions, so you get different points of view - and it is never boring!
How has the company helped you develop?
As a PCM, you'll take training for the Mondelēz International project management framework - Idea to Market or I2M.
It's not only the day to day work which has helped me grow, but also the willingness of each of my managers to share their experience. Working as a PCM is giving me an opportunity to understand distinct roles within the company and to learn from true professionals.
What makes an ideal Product Change Manager?
I think it's important to listen to people, to hear what they are saying and react properly. You need to be very organised, and even know how to organise other people sometimes, because you often have limited time. I think it's important to communicate effectively and of course to ask the right questions. Sometimes discussions can go off in totally different directions and you need to bring people back to the subject in hand, because you need to get the desired result.
How would you describe the culture at Mondelēz International?
There's a really good atmosphere. Everybody is very friendly and tries to help - they are willing to go out of their way to answer questions and assist however they can. I think it's easy to fit in and although there are some similarities between what we have in Prague and Warsaw, the office here is much bigger. There are great opportunities within the organisation to grow and to develop, and to try different roles to broaden your career.
What is the office like?
The Warsaw office provides a working place for a large number of employees. We have a whole floor in a nice administrative building. It has lots of open space, with meeting rooms where you can find a quiet place for a meeting, and there are also kitchens and coffee places to have lunch or a quick chat with your colleagues. After a few weeks I don't even need the office plan to move around…and I don't get lost!
Is Warsaw a nice place to live?
I am pretty new to the city, but so far, my impression is very good. There are lots of expats so it's no problem to find new friends or someone to go out with.
It's not too expensive; there are always events to attend, places to visit, lots of shops and parks, and the riverside for a walk. I found a nice apartment near the river in the old town and I don't have to travel too far to get to work.