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The Professionals: Runfen Wang

Her combined passion for technology, innovation, sustainability – and people – has led Runfen to what she describes as her dream job.

Soon after finishing her studies in Sweden, she joined the company in 2022 and has quickly climbed to her current role of Global Product Manager, BA Laundry.

Runfen has found a home from home in Sweden after moving from China 13 years ago to teach her native language at Uppsala University. She switched roles from teacher to student and completed masters’ studies in AI, followed by Industrial Engineering and Management.
Her teaching background has more in common with her job than you may think; interacting, explaining and presenting complex technology in an easy-to-understand way.

d80a0519-0627-4677-af17-ab8d7e40faccYou started as Junior Product Manager and was recently promoted to Global Product Manager for Business Area Laundry. What does that job title entail? Tell us more about what you do!

I work specifically with front–load washers and my responsibilities include managing customer visits, holding presentations internationally and promoting BA Laundry’s strategies, creating business cases, performing market research, holding internal and external product training, managing projects for new products, supporting other functions and solving any problem that arise in my product segment. As a product manager, we are everywhere, all the time!

What route did you take in terms of studies and jobs to where you are today?

I finished two master’s programs during my student years at Uppsala University in Sweden. The first specialized in AI, which opened a new world to me with innovative technologies. The second was Industrial Engineering & Management where I found my true passion.

During my studies, I also worked as university lecturer which helped me to become a confident presenter that I still benefit from today when holding product trainings. Each step brought me closer to be a product manager at Electrolux Professional – it almost felt like destiny.

What do you love about the role?

Every day is different, every task is unique. Product managers are a link connecting many functions globally, giving us the opportunity to interact with so many amazing colleagues internally and meet with interesting customers externally. Then, it’s about bringing all the gathered feedback into product development; it’s a dynamic process and a great feeling to be part of product creation, especially when you know we have the best products on the market. Besides that, I love my team; everyone in the product management team inspires me in many ways.

And, on the other hand, what are the biggest challenges?

I want to help our colleagues to meet all customer requirements, and make our customers satisfied. However, it’s very difficult to meet all customer needs. Therefore, prioritization among all the requests is challenging. Fortunately, the guidance from my manager and the great support I receive from amazing colleagues always helps me to identify the priorities that are most beneficial to our customers.

Rufen-pictureWhat advice would you give to people wanting to work in a position like yours?

To be a happy and driven product manager, you need to be interested in both machines and people. This doesn’t mean that you must have a technical background, but you do need a great interest in technology and innovation, together with a passion to meet different stakeholders and be confident presenting in front of a crowd.

How would you like to develop further in your role or potentially do something completely different?

I love being a product manager and, as someone who is obsessed with innovation, I would like to deepen my technical knowledge in all aspects of my category so I can better help with any request I receive and play a larger role in forming the future for professional laundry solutions.

Tell us about your experience of the multinational working environment and the opportunities that exist within the company?

I work daily with colleagues from all over the world and, even though I’ve only been in the company for less than two years, I’ve already had the opportunity to hold presentations and trainings in several different countries, both in Europe and Asia. In addition, I’m frequently involved in events organized at our facilities in Ljungby, where internals and externals from all over the globe gather.

Why choose to work at Electrolux Professional Group?

It’s one of the most top-notch companies for Swedish students who study industrial engineering and formed part of our case studies during our courses, not only for its innovations but also for its sustainability work. That’s why I chose Electrolux Professional, but it’s not the reason I stayed. I stayed because of the people. There are so many professional, knowledgeable but humble colleagues who have been dedicated to laundry for decades and each of them inspires me every day!

Check out our global career site, if you aspire to pursue a career similar to Runfen ‘s.