Please introduce yourself (who are you and what do you do in your life)

My name is Nicholas, and I help companies become sustainable. As a Sustainability Senior Business Developer (long title, I know) at the Danish Business Authority (Erhvervsministeriet), it is my responsibility to take companies to the next level in their sustainability transformation – environmentally, socially and economically.

 

Which team and when did you graduate? 

Team 15 and graduated in 2011. But there is a twist; I started on team 2 in Rotterdam, Netherlands, and finished in Aarhus, DK.

 

What have you been doing since you graduated as a Kaospilot?

A KP-project in 2010 laid the ground for my “new life” as a circular economy nerd. I co-founded a movement for swapping markets – like flea markets but fwith the intension of swapping instead of buying. And then bartering.

Around graduation in 2011, I co-founded an NGO, CradlePeople, that brought together politicians, companies and organizations to start the circular economy in Denmark. One big win during that time was changing the Danish National Waste Plan to become a National Resource Plan instead. Waste is a resource now!

The road to where I am today has been long and twisted, so buy me a beer at a KP reunion, and I will spill my beans. But in essence it has been a mix of starting my own consultancy and working for some professional consultancies…

 

Being a public servant gives me the freedom to say what the companies needs to hear, instead on focusing on what I can sell them. I have no buy-in, other than help them grow

 

What is important for you in your job?

The freedom to give advice to companies without any limitations. Being a public servant gives me the freedom to say what the companies needs to hear, instead on focusing on what I can sell them. I have no buy-in, other than help them grow.

Also, I get long lasting relationship with the companies, that I cherish very much, and I fulfilled one of my dreams from my time at KP, which was to be a professional networker.

 

What major learnings would you point out from your experience that have shaped you as a leader? 

I was never good at following theoretic systemic change management at KP, but wow, I really use that now. I help facilitate transformation and change together with company leaders, which has given me a lot of experience, that have shaped me over the years. Without facilitation skills and change management and don’t think I would have survived very long in my current job.

 

What is your biggest source for inspiration right now?

I love my job for the simple reason; I daily get inspired. I see companies making an positive impact every day. I jump out of bed every morning because I play a very small part in making the World a better place every day. If you have the “climate anxiety”, then look at what is happening in Danish small and medium companies – it is very inspiring.

 

What would would be an example of a learning or an experience from your time at Kaospilot that has been important to you?

To fail is ok. Cliché, I know, but it’s true. Sustainability is still undiscovered land and there is a lot of trial and error. I push companies to do pilot-test, start projects and just do. It is the best way to learn.

 

What is a piece of advice that you would like to give future Kaospilot graduates? 

Save all the tools you learn! I often go back in my notes, books and hand-outs to “freshen up” and apply the theory I learned, with the reality I meet. Sometimes, even, I share them with CEOs and other executives, who have discovered that being a process leader, and not a project manager, is much more valuable. Who knew? Well, the KP founders knew. Thanks for that!

 

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