This month’s Member Spotlight

Lill Kleven

Lill Kleven

August 2016

Can you tell us a bit about your background and your role?
Professionally, I have been working within Sales and Marketing during my entire career. I started in Orkla, a leading FMCG corporation in Norway, where I’m from. Later I moved to the Netherlands to join Unilever, where I joined the B2B arm which later was sold and is now known as Sealed Air Diversey Care. I’ve also worked for Sapa, a market leader within aluminium products. I’ve worked in product and brand management, operations and sector marketing as well as commercial and sales excellence.
Currently I’m searching for my next role and I’m looking for an international environment as the diversity it represents is something I enjoy tremendously. Sustainability and Diversity are themes I’ve been involved in throughout and something I am looking to continue. Since April 2015, I’m also leading the Marketing Committee within the LEAD network.

Why is diversity important for you?
From an early age, I was lucky enough to meet people with diverse backgrounds. I have lived, studied and worked in 4 countries and I have come to immensely appreciate diversity in gender, culture and background, age, orientation. In short, differences make life interesting, and our work more rewarding. The more ideas, the better results. I strongly believe that everyone is valuable and has important contributions to make and by striving towards that objective, we are working for a better world for all.
What is your perspective on LEAD and what advice would you have for us?
I have been leading the Marketing Committee within the LEAD network for a year now and I was happy to accept this role as I would like to contribute to advancing diversity and inclusion within Europe. The fact that I can combine this with my passion for Marketing makes it all the better! Organisations such as LEAD network play an important role. I am Norwegian but even if this is a Scandinavian country, we have a long way go in order to achieve more diversity and so I would like to play my part.
Make your voice heard! We are a start-up and counting on people’s time, goodwill and energy. In order to continue to grow and push the cause, I would like to encourage everybody to share their views in our LinkedIn group, express their stories in our Newsletter, recruit colleagues and friends as members and to participate in our conference in October.
We will continue to build the organization in order to inspire, educate and support – and it’s important for the LEAD network to expand our ‘product’ so that everyone benefits. I invite all members to share ideas and suggestions towards this end.

Tell us about something innovative you’ve done recently related to diversity?
Although we don’t have a LEAD Chapter yet in Norway, I am working with Nielsen Norway to set up a joint LEAD/Nielsen Diversity meeting. We are looking at this as a trial to begin with and want to invite various players in Norway to participate. We look to the public sector, FMCG, Retail and other opinion leaders to participate in order to start creating cross-fertilisation and sharing of ideas. We plan to organize this in October.

What is your biggest achievement related to diversity?
I am very proud of the team I led a few years back, with members from Benelux, France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Slovenia. Despite being from different backgrounds and working on different priorities, the team came together and showed a tremendous complimentarity and built on each other’s strengths. It clearly showed that different schools of thought produce new and innovative ways of seeing and doing things, and it also felt very motivating to work in such an environment.