Max Lundén

Global Brand Manager, The Absolut Company

Swedish Max Lundén works for The Absolut Company, famous for their world known vodka, the Absolut Vodka. He choose BI Norwegian Business School because of its international reputation in the field of marketing. As a Global Brand Manager, his responsibilities take him all over the world to meet and do business with new people from different cultures.

Working in the marketing business in a globalised world Max needs a variety of skills to get through his day. Apart from a good brand understanding and knowledge of international business and marketing theory, he is depending on socialising, presentation and organisational skills.

- BI gave me a profound understanding of international business dynamics, a prerequisite to excel quickly working with a major international lifestyle brand, Max says.

With a base in both London and Stockholm after graduation, Max travels the entire world for business.

- Through my education I also learned how cultures affect local ways of working and how to adapt accordingly. I find BI’s international commitment key to be competitive in our increasingly globalizing business environment.

International Network

To Max, building an international network has been a key component for his career. He advises all students to take advantage of the diversity of students at BI.

- Be social from the start as your international network will stick throughout your entire career. Join the student union, I did and got loads of experiences in addition to my studies.

Max was also approached by Nova 100, a talent network for students. The criteria to join the network include strong academic results, emotional quota, drive and relevant work experience.

- They put me in contact with MTV Networks where I began my career. Today I am a member of Nova Pro, the equivalent for working professionals and I was selected as one of their recruitment agents to further help them increase their network, Max says.

Educating key stakeholders

- You always learn new things when you take on a new job, but I had no idea what I was in for.

Meeting new people from all parts of the world, from all levels of hierarchies, Max has become quite a social chameleon. He understands what buttons to switch on or off depending on whom he is meeting.

- In my previous role as Area Manager for Global Travel Retail, I travelled the world negotiating global strategies with local affiliates. I gained a lot of experience of the business aspect. With my current job, I have learned that the relational side is equally important to succeed, Max states.

With his sharp sense of business and excellent social skills, Max educates Absolut Vodka’s key stakeholders from all over the world. The education includes all aspects of the brand – from production, product and marketing – depending on the needs of the target groups.

- My team and I are currently working on upgrading the entire educational experience, enabling us to maintain our top I class rating amongst other spirit educational programs, he says.

Being a BI student in Norway

Max enjoyed living in Oslo and Norway; we asked him some quick questions about his time as a BI student:

Why did you choose to study abroad and why did you choose Norway?
- Actually choose BI rather than choosing Norway. I had no experience from the country at all when I moved. Gradually, when getting to know the culture I fell in love with both the people and the country itself.

What is your best memory from the years at BI?
- The wide range of international colleagues, friends and getting to know the Norwegian culture.

Describe a typical day as a BI-student?
- Work hard – play hard in a creative environment with like-minded and motivated people.

What advice would you give a prospective BI-student?
- Take time to think through your passions and choose program thereafter.

How did you find living In Norway, and how would you say life in Norway is different than life in your home country?
- Norway is packed with friendly and inviting people. As a Swede, I felt welcomed straight away. Norway has a culture deeply rooted in active lifestyles, which I enjoy!

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