How did you end up working for Tele2?
– I wanted to go abroad and was fortunate enough to receive a full scholarship at the Technical University of Denmark to get my Masters in electrical engineering. After my studies I started looking for a job in either Denmark or Sweden. I had worked at a mobile phone operator in Uzbekistan before I moved to Denmark, so it felt natural for me to look for work in the telecom field. When I was offered a job as a trainee to the Marketing Director for Central Europe and Eurasia at Tele2 it felt like a perfect match.
You have had a number of different jobs since you joined Tele2 four years ago. Today you work as a Roaming Manager- can you tell us a little bit about your job?
As a roaming manager I negotiate the international roaming voice and data wholesale price. It is the price that Tele2 will pay to the other operator when our customers are abroad and use roaming services. Tele2 retail will package and price the roaming services using the cost base provided by our team, so good deals benefit our customers. I am responsible for South- and North America, the Caribbean and the Commonwealth of Independent States that includes my home country Uzbekistan.
Can you explain how the deals with the other operators are made?
– First it is about establishing a relationship and to sign an agreement. Thereafter our team in Riga performs tests to makes sure that the service works while we negotiate the wholesale prices for all Tele2 countries. An interesting aspect of this job is that some of our partners also are our competitors.
Did you experience a culture shock when you moved to Denmark?
– I can’t really say that I did, because I was too focused to keep up with the studies. I hadn’t spoken English that much before and it was quite a challenge to study in a new language.
Have you noticed any differences between how Swedish people behave compared to what is common practice in your native country?
– Everything is much more organized in Sweden compared to Uzbekistan and there are unwritten rules for just about everything. For example, in Sweden you stand in line and wait for your turn, in Uzbekistan you have to go and get what you want. But it’s not that people in Tashkent aren’t polite, actually quite the contrary. People show a lot of respect for older people and are very family oriented.
– The social contract between men and women is also different, and there were some funny incidents when I first moved here. I almost walked into a door since I expected the man who was in front of me to hold it open for me. And I bumped into men on my way into the elevator since I assumed they would let me get on before them.