Describe your role at the company, and briefly your background / experience of living and working in other countries.
– I work as Global Health Economics and Outcomes Research Manager at Sobi, for about 1.5 years now. I completed my MSc at the University of York, in the UK, and my PhD at the University of Athens, in Greece, where I come from. Prior to moving to Stockholm, I lived and worked for 5 years in London. I moved to London to work for a consultancy company within the pharmaceutical sector, and after 4 years I joined Sobi in 2016, working from London at the time. Having visited Stockholm several times during the beginning of my new role, I decided to relocate here in order to work from the headquarter offices of Sobi.
What expectations did you have before moving to Sweden?
– Whilst it was due to my job that I started thinking about moving to Stockholm, living in Sweden and working for a Swedish company comprised a big part of my decision, from a personal point of view. Sweden is widely known for its quality of life and work-life balance, and that is exactly what I was hoping to find.
How did it turn out?
– Moving to Stockholm, 8 months ago, turned out to be way better than what I had originally imagined. The city has a character, and is filled with several distinct areas and neighbourhoods to cover all tastes and preferences. I live on one of the islands, and I can walk to work, which is surrounded by lots of green spaces. Swedish people show great professionalism and respect for their work, and manage to combine demanding roles, based on my experience in a multi-national company, with healthy breaks for fika or exercise. Working relations between the employees are key, and you will find that people co-operate in a very supportive and collaborative way. Foreigners are treated with equal respect, and I find it impressive that in a room filled with locals, the language used will change to English as soon as a foreigner steps in.
What is the best thing about living in Sweden?
– I feel that living in the Swedish environment allows you to have a more peaceful, balanced, and healthy lifestyle, which in turn allows you to follow your aspirations and reach your potential. Stockholm is smaller than Athens, and way smaller than London, which makes it easier to move around the city without having to plan well in advance in order to socialise. I believe that if you make an effort, you can become part of the local society that can surprise you with the breadth of interests and activities that people of all age engage in.
Would you recommend others to move here?
– Yes, absolutely!
What do you think of Sweden in regard to equality and other social aspects?
– I still find it fascinating that equality is so widely accepted and rooted in Sweden. I appreciate the social structures here, a country based on social trust and co-responsibility across all the members of the society.
In your opinion, which is the most beautiful place in Sweden?
– I live in Stockholm which is a very beautiful city, in many different ways. My favourite parts are the numerous footpaths by the waterfront, filled with people running or walking. There are benches everywhere, inviting you to sit and absorb a scenery coloured in various ways, depending on the season. You can watch people ice-skate during winter, at the same place where they would go kayaking in the summer time.
Which is the best Swedish tradition?
– Sweden has several unique traditions that are very interesting. Celebrating Midsummer and the longest day of the year, comprises an integral part of the Swedish society. An opportunity to have large gatherings in the countryside, involving flower garlands, pickled herring, maypoles, and dancing, is a day to remember. At the same time, I am looking forward to the candlelit Lucia procession and the Christmas season that lighten up the winter darkness.