Professionally, Tanja has spent all her adult life with Falck. And since Tanja has always known that she wanted to work with people, and to help and to guide them, it makes sense. But back when she graduated from high school, Tanja had no idea about what she wanted to be.
“It’s kind of strange to think back on. But I simply had no clue. A girlfriend of mine dropped out of her studies as a dietician. We talked about it, and I thought dietician sounded like just the thing for me,” recalls Tanja.
The education intrigued Tanja with its mix of topics and the focus on helping people to a healthier and better life.
“I would study things like biochemistry and sociology, anatomy and physiology, and communication. And I liked the fact that it was only three and a half years of studies, including practical internships. It was not all books. That appealed to me,” says Tanja.
But, a little too late into her studies, Tanja discovered that dietician was not the thing for her after all.
“I found out I really wanted to work with health at the workplace. But it was too late to start all over. So, I did my bachelor and went straight for a Master in Work Life Studies. Ironically, I ended up doing the five years of books I had dreaded,” laughs Tanja.
A passion for people and health
While studying, Tanja worked part-time as a waitress. Then one day she saw a job posting for a student job with Falck.
“It was a position within Falck Healthcare. And since I knew I wanted to work with health at the workplace, the job seemed tailored to me. I applied. I got the job. And I’ve been here ever since. I’ve even had the same boss ever since,” laughs Tanja.
Tanja concedes she was lucky. Lucky that she stumbled across the perfect job as a student. Lucky that Falck chose to create a permanent position for her when she had completed her master. And lucky that she got to test in practice her ideas and theories from her thesis.
“I suddenly got to apply all the theories in practice on different projects. To test my ideas and see the impact they had on companies and people’s lives in the workplace. Like, how can I change this company’s workplace health both physically and mentally? It was super exciting.”
Into the work environment
Recently, Tanja has also been given responsibility for Falck Healthcare’s Workplace Assessments and Ergonomics in Denmark. According to Tanja, it’s a natural extension of her focus on health at work.
“We take a holistic approach to wellbeing and health in the workplace. And that naturally includes the work environment. There’s often more than one reason to why you suffer from a sore back or neck. It’s a combination of variables - lifestyle, health, the workplace and the work environment. Both physically and mentally. And ergonomics plays into the equation too,” says Tanja
On a day-to-day basis, Tanja is responsible for carrying out workplace assessments. But she is also responsible for updating the questionnaires and developing concepts for smaller companies that wish to work strategically with their work environment on a continuous basis.
“We’re are developing concepts that will enable companies to work focused on their work environment to create more value for the company. And we try to look at it from a new perspective to break down the silo-thinking that has governed the approach to workplace health and work environment,” says Tanja.
Freedom and development
Today, Tanja has been with Falck for seven years. And according to Tanja, she has as yet never considered changing jobs. The variation in her current job is simply too great.
“It suits me perfectly. I like to get out and meet people. To be in touch with our clients and get a sense of what’s going on. To be in contact with our nurses in the field. To update them on the newest regulations and methods. To work on concept development with colleagues and dive into the latest research and see how we can apply it. And to embark on new projects,” says Tanja.
It’s a very versatile workday. And Tanja is busy joggling projects, meetings and deadlines. But that doesn’t scare her.
“It’s up to me to structure my time. I like that responsibility. I get to help people. And I enjoy a great deal of freedom to plan my work myself. I get to really stimulate so many facets of my personality - the social, the nerdy, the caring, and the inquisitive. All through my work tasks. It motivates me. It challenges me. And I like to be challenged,” smiles Tanja.