Tove Kristensen

Position: Sales Coordinator, KC ProSupply
Employed since: October 2012 (Birodan: October 2000)
Education: Office Assistant

The beginning

In 2000, I left my former job at Danish Crown and started at Birodan as an office assistant and an all-rounder in the company. We were only two employees in Birodan which entailed plenty of work to do. Besides all the practical tasks, I handled everything from our stock to the economy and part of the sales. As Birodan trades equipment for the gas industry, Kosan Crisplant was one of our biggest customers for more than eight years. In 2012, it was decided to sell Birodan and later that year, we were acquired by KC.

Where I am today

Today, Birodan is part of the KC ProSupply trading division dedicated to the sale of gas equipment and devices. I am still employed by Birodan, but now I work closely together with the rest of the KC ProSupply office. My everyday tasks have not changed much, but I have had to delegate certain tasks to colleagues. For instance, I am no longer in charge of our equipment on stock which has become an integrated part of KC's own warehouse. A decision that suits me well as it became a physically hard job.

Besides, I function as the back office of Birodan and KC ProSupply. I make sure that all orders are shipped at the right time and to the right place. Sometimes, because I have gotten to know our products and our customers' needs well, I carry out orders myself as well.

Now that Birodan is a part of Kosan Crisplant, we are now in contact with and deal with many new customers from all over the world.

The best thing about working for KC

I find it interesting to work in the niche business that is LPG, because there are not too many players and you really get to know the people you are dealing with whether it be customers or suppliers and I enjoy that familiarity and the daily contact with both.

Also, the work environment in KC is very pleasant. When KC acquired Birodan, everyone was so welcoming, warm and helpful, and we got a thorough introduction to the core of the business. At KC, you feel welcome and at ease at the moment you enter the office. The values that prevail in the organisation are admirable and - most importantly - lived by. My colleagues are honest and open, and a joy to work with.

Being a woman in a man's world

Growing up with three brothers and always having a majority of male colleagues, I am used to working with men and I have also come to prefer it that way. There is no whispering in the corners or gossip around the office and if you have a problem with someone, we have the common understanding of putting the fish on the table. In fact, that is one of our values. We firmly believe in saying what we feel and not beat around the bush. I find it liberating to work with men because you can be very straightforward and you don't have to sugar-coat everything.

However, working in a business dominated by men leaves certain imprints. For instance, more often than not when new customers write to me, they address me as "Mr. Kristensen". Customers often assume that because I work in this business, I must be a man.

As a passing remark, I would also mention that having 80 male colleagues in KC may give you the "work-related injury" of getting a very masculine sense of humour, though. But if that is my biggest challenge, I figure it is not too bad.

Maybe it is because I live in a part of the world where men and women more or less have the same prerequisites for success, but I have never even considered it a problem for a woman to work in a business dominated by men. To me, it is a non-issue and I prefer it that way. No one has ever shown special consideration for me because of my gender, nor do I want them to. I regard myself just as qualified as my male colleagues and to me, it is a matter of course that women are given the same opportunities as men. At the end of the day, if you are aiming for success and have the skills to match, gender will not stand in your way.