Meet our trainees, Saska Sandholm and Jonathan Stolpe
We are excited to introduce our talented young trainees, Saska and Jonathan. We interviewed Saska and Jonathan and asked their thoughts on internship, on-boarding and what was it like to start the internship during the Covid-19.
Saska Sandholm joined VALOR in June 2020. Saska is a fourth-year finance student at Aalto University School of Business. Outside his office hours Saska enjoys spending time with his friends, doing various sports, cooking, bartending, and playing the guitar.
Jonathan Stolpe joined VALOR in August 2020. He is currently starting his third year at Hanken School of Economics, studying finance as a major. In prior to joining VALOR, Jonathan has completed internships in investment banking and wealth management. Outside the office Jonathan is a big fan of sports.
S: I had heard many good things about working at VALOR from previous interns and after my first months here, I can see why. Working alongside colleagues with +20 years of experience both in consulting and in many industries has been very inspiring and helpful for me professionally. You will also be encouraged by everyone to take more responsibility and challenge yourself, which stems from our highly motivated team of people and winning mentality.
J: I participated in VALOR’s recruiting event last year, and I liked the atmosphere a lot. I had great discussions and fun with many of the VALOR representatives and found the case we did at the event interesting. Furthermore, I liked the idea of being able to do different types of projects varying from M&A to strategy and operational projects. For these reasons, I decided to apply to the VALOR’s internship program.
Expectations vs. Reality?
S: As I had heard many good things about the firm, my expectations were quite clear. I was still surprised that starting from the first day and my first project, I immediately felt like an integral part of the team. The on-boarding was smooth and included e.g. short 1-on-1 conversations with everyone here at VALOR. This was a great way to get to know everyone quickly and to adjust for the low hierarchy we have here.
J: Before starting at VALOR I had high expectations for the incoming internship. My first month at VALOR has totally lived up those expectations. The on-boarding was well organized, and I felt very welcome at VALOR. Furthermore, I have had the opportunity to work on interesting projects and gain some responsibility.
What was it like to start internship during the pandemic?
S: From my perspective, working as a trainee during the pandemic has not been so different from normal. Sure, some of the client meetings and workshops have been moved online for everyone’s safety. However, these days people are already accustomed to working remotely and video conferences that it hardly makes a difference anymore. At VALOR you have the freedom of choice to work remotely most of the time if it suits you the best.
J: I feel like the Covid-19 has not affected the amount of work, but it has affected how we do the work. All the employees can decide whether they want to work at the office or remotely from home, because the majority of the client and internal meetings are via Teams, Zoom or other platforms. I have worked about 50% of the days at the office and 50% from home.
Do you have any regards for someone interested to also work at VALOR?
S&J: We both highly recommend everyone to apply for an internship at VALOR and if you would like to hear more about our experiences, feel free contact us to ask anything!