Maj Sirén is an ex-athlete, a start-up founder and avid professional. She spoke to CXOguide about her journey so far and whats up ahead in 2019. She tends to be in permanent beta and this line caught our attention to talk to her.
In permanent beta; very exciting and eye catching line. Can be a title for a book…Tell us how this line reflects you:
I think that permanent beta defines me well as I am a life long learner. I can always be better, there is always room for improvement – as for all of us. For me, this is a positive thing, it drives me forward and gives me energy. Just a couple of years back, I took few courses at Open University of SQL and web development. I have continue taking courses as I find it important to understand digital business and its possibilities. I also want to understand the technical side of it and few of the coding languages. I never consider myself ready, so that I could stop learning and just maintain my status.
I have done most of my career in different positions at aviation MRO (maintenance, repair, overhaul) business. In 2013 I quit my job in aviation business in order to become a start-up Founder. We developed a web application service for job-seekers, to the beta phase. We ended in the Death Valley and another chapter of life started as I was recruited as CEO within a construction business. Our company was acquired by another company and I decided to take the possibility for a time-out and develop myself further. I am a combination of business knowledge and technical understanding.
Tell us who is Maj at her core
The core me is an athlete and that is what defines me. At the age of 16, I was already a member of Finnish National Rowing Team aiming at the World Championships. Later, I became a half-professional rally driver, who managed the marketing and sponsorship deals by myself. It can be said that I focused fully only on sports, not on studying, when I was under 30 years old. Today, I am close to fifty years old, experienced in working at international business and exercise only to keep in fit.
What is your advice to women on starting own business
I live in Finland and our culture is (quite) equal. This is my current business context and the context where I put my answer as well. In my opinion, starting up something is a person related, not a gender related, issue. If you have what it takes, it makes no difference whether you are a man or a woman. After all, the same laws of business apply despite your gender.
From my personal Lessons Learned list, I advise that you find a mentor. If you can’t find a mentor, read articles and talk to people who have previously started a business, been start-up founders. Have they made mistakes; can you learn from their mistakes, can you avoid those mistakes?
My advice to anyone who wants to start a business is to do your homework. Study the markets, study competitors and evaluate why your product/service is different, what value it brings to your customer. Define your customers and all these basic questions. Evaluate whether your business has what it takes to succeed.
What do you look forward in 2019
New year, new career is basically my plan for this year.
I’m actively listening for opportunities and keeping my eyes open. Currently I’m in a situation where I can accept offers and I’m ready to relocate or work remotely, in case we can create a win-win situation.
You can contact Maj at:
► abblits @ gmail.com
► +358 (0)400-98 85 96