Employees - August 2023

Removing obstacles from the path

Head of Technical Product Development in Ekenäs (FI)

She says about herself that she asks the “stupid” questions – in order to inspire others to find solutions. Ann-Charlott Nyberg is Head of Technical Product Development at the Finnish ceramics plant in Ekenäs.

“I got lost here and stayed.” When it comes to her career, Ann-Charlott Nyberg doesn't mince words. The Head of Technical Product Development at the ceramics plant in Ekenäs has an engineering degree in geology and mining. As a graduate, you normally end up in a mine or in tunnel construction, she says.

Instead of going underground, the Finn is drawn to sanitary ceramics. After further training in project management, she joined Sanitec in 2003 as Product Manager. The plan was to stay for six months. That turned into 20 years.

Illogical behaviour
Ceramics and geology do not seem to be far apart, but the fields are actually very different, she says. “Despite the tremendous progress in slip development, the raw material of ceramics still seems to behave illogically from time to time”, explains Ann-Charlott Nyberg. In practice, that means problem solving by the metre. “Even if it sounds cliché, I still learn something new every day, even after 20 years”.

The knowledge is willingly passed on in the company: “No one hoards their know-how with us.” What she also appreciates is the interdisciplinary cooperation across departmental boundaries.

“Even if it sounds cliché, I still learn something new every day, even after 20 years”.
Ann-Charlott Nyberg, Head Technical Product Development Ekenäs (FI)
As Head of Technical Product Development, Ann-Charlott Nyberg is in daily contact with employees from different areas.

“Stupid” questions as inspiration
Ann-Charlott Nyberg’s department makes product designs ready for production. She and her team align the designers’ ideas for a new model with the production environment. When the latest pressure casting technology for wall-hung WCs was introduced in Ekenäs, the Finn worked closely with the supplier of the pressure casting machines to produce sanitary ceramics that are no different in quality from manually cast models.

In her everyday life, the product developer likes to be close to the project. “My role is to remove obstacles from the way of the engineers in my team so they can do their job,” she explains. And adds with a laugh: “I ask the stupid questions. And I tell myself that I’m inspiring my team to find solutions.”