Intern insight - Aske and Rasmus
Rasmus Tafteberg Sørensen and Aske Kilsdal joined J. Lauritzen's Singapore office for 5 months as student assistants during 2019. They will rejoin us in Copenhagen as Shipping Trainees in September. Here is their insight into working for the company so far.
How would you sum up your experience of working for J. Lauritzen?
Aske: Insightful – we got an insight into the life of being an expat. One of the things I associate with the shipping industry is that it is global. That's one of the cool things about this industry, the international setting and the possibility of working abroad. I feel lucky to have had the chance to get a little taste of that part of working in shipping.
Rasmus: The many different nationalities in one office made an impression on me. I was excited to feel how the dynamics would be in an old Danish shipping company with such a multicultural environment.
What was your impression of the company culture?
Aske: It was a very relaxed and open company culture, not very top down as far as I could see. There was room for diversity, also in terms of dress code – it was not as formal as I had expected. It wasn't a rigid suit and tie culture as you see in other companies in the industry.
Rasmus: It was a very informal culture. The open office environment made it very easy to turn around and ask a colleague from another department a question. Also, it made it easier to grasp the connection between the tasks of the various departments and to see the overall coherence in the business. It made it feel like we were all one unit working together.
What surprised you the most during your time with JL?
Aske: I was surprised to see how dependent the Singapore office is of the Copenhagen headquarter office. It is significantly busier when the Copenhagen employees are working, than when they are not.
Rasmus: I was surprised to find that some of the things we were working on did not already exist. We did not work on updating an already existing framework but got a chance to develop something from the start.
How do you think you have developed during the internship – what have you learnt or improved the most?
Rasmus: I practised my multi-tasking skills. While I was working on a project in Excel, I also had to be alert to what happened around me, to capture what your colleagues do and the connection between all of our tasks.
Aske: I learned what the jargon is in a shipping company and in that way got an insight into the working environment of JL. It was exciting to see how much cooperation there is between the Operations and Chartering departments. It was a good way to get an introduction to my upcoming internship in the Copenhagen office.
What was the social life like in the JL Singapore office?
Rasmus: The social life was really good. For example, we would often go play football in the ‘Singapore Vikings’ team together with our colleagues.
Aske: Many of the employees out in Singapore have left their base to come and work there, which makes the relationship you have with your colleagues more important than here in Denmark. The people in the Singapore office were good at taking care of this network, by arranging social activities, such as basketball once a week. It feels like a community, which we quickly felt like being a part of. I felt very welcome, even though I was only going to work there for a short period of time.