"Without STI I would have never come this far" Sophia Somma - STI-Scandinavia

About your Job with STI

Sofia_0Sophia Somma works as Customer Service Assistant with our subsidiary STI-Scandinavia in Sweden and has a special story to share about her job with STI and how it changed her life. We are proud that we have passionate people like her working with us. Thank you Sophia for sharing and confirming that the values we stand for and our working model supports our employees to be motivated and engaged.

Since when are you working with STI?
This month it will be 5 years.

What made you decide to apply for a position with STI in the first place? I had always had this business in the back of my neck so to speak - since a family member of mine is in the same organization. As a child, I used to sit by her desk and drawing pictures while hearing her being on the phone all the time. Of course, back then I never had a full understanding of what everything meant. Many years later, I was just 19 and had recently graduated High School and was recovering from Anorexia. With no master’s degree, no job experience and in need of something to motivate me to keep on going, I was offered an internship for the Customer Service department in Tumba.

Which position did you originally apply for? Customer Service Assistant

We know you have a special story to tell as you moved from Sweden to Finland to live with your partner and despite this move to another country you are still working for STI Scandinavia in Tumba. Please share with us how it came to this.
Well, it turned out that I quickly understood the work and was always curious for learning more. One thing lead to another, I got a permanent job position after 7 months of being an assistant and I climbed my way up the stair of knowledge and working experience. I became more confident in my work, despite of knowing that most of the people get a master’s degree for getting work in this business – I wanted to show that I was also capable of handling this business and all of it challenges it contains. I kept on learning more in both Customer Service and International Operations department. I gladly took on special deliveries, customs clearances, I was fast and precise in my work - and I think that was the reason STI Scandinavia wanted me to stay and work for them, despite the distance and my decision of moving abroad.

Where you expecting that you could continue to work for STI Scandinavia?
How did you feel, when this opportunity came up? Not at all! I didn’t even know that would be possible. When I got the offer, I got very excited, nervous and flattered at the same time. A lot of mixed feelings!

Where exactly do you work now and which position do you hold? Right now, I am based in an office on my own in downtown Helsinki. My position remains the same as from when I was working in Sweden. Just on a different location. I book transports for both SVC and McDonald’s customers, I arrange customs clearance for the needed transports, Customerservice department when regarding import / export from Finland, I write instruction manuals for the STI team in Tumba and during the seasonal work, I’ve been the contact person when working with STI Germany and the Cruise Liners.
Basically you can say that I do pretty much everything that there is to do, except for invoicing and finance! *laughs*

How do you hold your connection with STI Scandinavia? Does the fact that you are not working in the same office effect your work? Both yes and no. We communicate with each other daily via skype and / or phone calls, so we keep up the communication as if we all were still sitting together in the same office, but of course it is never the same as being physically present with one another. But my performance at work is not affected, on the contrary – I think it has evolved for the better.

Please describe your main responsibilities of your current position.
My main responsibilities are to book trucks, advise the arrival of the trucks, assist in Customerservice issues regarding Finland import, export traffic and of course assist my colleagues in Tumba with custom clearance matters.

What are the main goals you want to achieve? If I could dream freely and play a bit with my mind.. I would love to be a team lead for Customer Service department and educate new STI Scandinavia future employees properly into this business. To encourage them that they can do a good job and never doubt themselves.

What do you do to achieve them? I always make sure to be available during and after working hours for both haulier, customers and colleagues. And I always do my best in order to support all of my colleagues with laughter, humor and professional support when needed.

What do you like most about your job? That every day is never the same and you get to see the true meaning of collaboration in our team in Tumba when one person is in need of help. Everyone steps in and make their effort. You are never alone in this business!

Which main challenges do you face in your position? Hectic days, when nothing goes as planned and you have 10 unanswered emails and everyone is urgent. It can be hard at times to prioritize – of course with the running years and with experience, you start to learn which errands are actually more urgent than the other.

What do you like most about STI? My colleagues and the endless variety of the work.

Is there anything else you would like to tell us about your job with STI? I am truly happy and grateful for getting the confidence and the knowledge I have today. When I was only an intern, I often doubted myself and since I did not have any master’s degree I doubted that I would get anywhere in life.
Thanks to STI , who always believed in me and gave me the confidence – I am now somewhere in my life I’d never dare to dream about before. Both physically and mentally!

About yourself - In a few words

Which words do you use the most?
Great, super and Fantastic

Who is your favorite musician?

A book that you would recommend?
The Secret by Rhonda Bynes

How do you like to spend your time off work?
Painting or playing video games!

Your favorite dish?
Burgers and fries

Ideal place to lose yourself on vacation?

Sorrento, Italy

What/who makes you laugh?
My friends!

A moment of happiness?
My dog on my lap

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