Therese Sjöberg

Innovation leader Stockholm

Therese Sjöberg; I’m originally from Karlshamn but I live in Stockholm since forever, it feels like. I work as an Innovation leader in healthcare and I’m truly passionate about my job. Here, I have the opportunity to make a difference, and even if it’s just for one person then all the work is worth it. Being an Innovation leader is pretty much the best job in the world – I get to match patient and hospital needs with industry & academia; and I get to develop health care within and together with health care organizations. My goal is always to involve users and suppliers in the work to bring our innovation efforts closely together to increase the speed to, and precision in, deployment in actual hospital care. I think that’s a perspective that often gets lost in such a large bureaucracy, even if everyone involved wants the best for everyone. And of course, my friends and family are a really big part of who I am.

What drives you? What does ‘making a difference’ mean to you?

As long as I can remember, I have always had a will and passion for working in healthcare. Every day you meet amazing people and get the chance to cure them and/or make their trip there better. There’s teamwork at a really high level and usually it’s mostly about creating happiness. Above all, it constantly puts your own situation in perspective and you start appreciate life in a whole different way.

Making a difference according to me is making a difference for someone else – otherwise it’s pointless. And it's not always what you do that matters, but how it is perceived.

Tell us a story from your past that has really shaped you. What did you learn?

I used to work as a nurse and we very seldom had trouble attending to of our patients but there was this one day where several things occurred where the chain of care burst and life changed for many families. I will never forget that and it’s something I carry with me every day. It changed me in a number of ways, but most importantly, it brought me to where I am today – in a role where I do everything I possibly could to ensure that something like that never happens again. It’s my life mission.

If you could travel back in time… what piece of advice would to give to yourself ten years ago?

- Follow your passion, keep your family and friends close to your heart and tell/show them often what they mean to you.
- Remember that you can make a difference.
- Evaluate throughout your life and take the time to pause and really feel.
- Dare to make mistakes, learn from them, live in the moment and celebrate success even in advance.
- People who take more energy than they give should be evaluated if they are worth your affection and time.
- Always be there for the ones you love.

I know that’s not one piece of advice but these are really important to me.

What does your morning routine look like? How do you maintain balance in your life? What bio or life hack would you like to share with the world?

I wake up with the alarm, watch the news with a cup of coffee and try to create a good feeling and atmosphere for the upcoming day. Then I quickly get myself ready and bike to work – usually under a bit of time pressure. I get that balance by having a job that I'm passionate about; by exercising a lot; prioritizing time with my friends and family; and above all, I'm good at living in the present and enjoying life. My life hack is to do things you are truly passionate about although research says it makes you less successful, but in my opinion your life will be more rewarding, fulfilling and happier.

When are you most happy? Where is your happy place?

I'm the happiest when an innovation improves the life of a patient (goosebumps), when I laugh with my friends and get the opportunity to discover new places in the world. The sea is by far my happy place. I was probably a mermaid in a previous life.

What’s your favorite type of training? Why is training important for you and your career?

I like to vary my training, but the favorites are swimming, tennis and crossfit.

Exercise is important to me and my career for a lot of reasons. It’s my time to reflect and it brings me new ideas and inspiration that motivates me. I get more energy when I exercise and for me it's good to do after work.

What’s next? What are your ambitions for the future?

Keep on increasing my knowledge and fight to get the opportunity to develop in my work assignment along with leading healthcare into the future. Another ambition is to empower women entrepreneurs/intrapreneurs within health innovation; I think it’s really important to shine a light on the people that work hard in this not-very-glamorous industry. Always with my mind in motion and my ethical compass that tells me which way to go.