Jelena Grigorjeva

Services Units Business Controller, Wärtsilä Marine Business

Limassol, Cyprus

10 years at Wärtsilä

Originally from Latvia


Different thinking keeps things interesting

Jelena Grigorjeva may have her house up high in the mountains, but her head is definitely not in the clouds as the complexity and variety of her work keeps her feet firmly on the ground. Working as a Business Controller in Wärtsilä Marine Business and having both Services Units, Greece-Cyprus (including Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria) as well as Russia under her responsibility area, Jelena finds it beneficial to be a forward-looking person. “My role in Business Control is to enable various teams work efficiently. I do this as I share my knowledge and insight, and through aligning the local business processes to the globally agreed principles,” Jelena describes her work.

Jelena’s career with the company had a vibrant start 10 years ago when she was headhunted to work for Wärtsilä. She got to put her expertise into full use right from the start as there happened to be period closings requiring some late-nights. And later, when Jelena was working one year as a maternity leave substitute for the Area South Europe and Africa Business Control Director, she needed to travel almost every week and have long virtual meetings to support the colleagues in her remote teams. Similar remote team leading responsibilities reoccurred in 2018 when Jelena again grabbed a new opportunity and worked a six-month period for Services Unit Turkey-Caspian.

Through the speedy start, Jelena’s consistency has helped her to take on these new tasks, and the many teams Jelena has got to work with during her years with the company have kept her roles constantly interesting and also enabled her to learn more about the company. Working with different business models and many different people is both challenging and motivating and definitely keeps Jelena going.

Jelena describes herself as a patient and empathic person. “All these characteristics help me in my daily activities. Especially during the past few years, when I’ve been working with multinational and multilingual teams,” Jelena tells. “Daily, I get to work with a wide range of colleagues, and I enjoy their versatile thinking. My teams are fun and always supportive and I’m very glad I got to start with a new team, Wärtsilä Russia, since this March.” For Jelena, who is originally from Latvia, it is nice to (net)work with colleagues speaking her native language, Russian. It was actually Jelena’s father and his job that took the family from Riga to Limassol in the first place: “Both my father and brother are marine engineers. Actually, my father used to work at one of Wärtsilä’s customers before he retired,” Jelena tells about her roots.

Past 10 years have shown to Jelena that there is one element that has helped Wärtsilä stay relevant from year to year: change. The urge to progress seems to be rooted deep into Wärtsilä and its leaders’ DNA and Jelena sees the development continuing: “It has been great to be part of the progress. But I believe we’ll see Wärtsilä becoming even more inventive in getting our teams to collaborate better beyond geographical borders, supporting our customers globally at a highest level. I’m seeing myself having an important role in such a global team, supporting my sales and finance colleagues in any location”.

To keep energised and ready for job demands, Jelena works out several times a week at a cross-fit gym. In addition, she has that wonderful house in the mountains where she enjoys fresh air and long walks in the nature: “We have a beautiful garden full of flowers, cherry and other fruit trees, ponds and ornamental fish. This is where I love to spend my out of office time,” Jelena shares revealing her favourite spot in the world.

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