“What is exciting about reaching the top is gaining the broad perspective regarding the business and influencing this with your own values”
Marianne V. Ovesen
Vice President, Global Operations
Radiometer

Facts

  • Marianne V. Ovesen
  • 55 years old (born 1962)
  • MSc in Food Science
  • Vice President, Global Operations
  • Radiometer
  • Married
  • Three sons (16, 16 and 21 years old)
  • Previously a competitive swimmer

Women Are Great Leaders

In her youth, Marianne V. Ovesen wanted to help the world to eat healthier. Later, she discovered that she is good at managing, and she believes that women generally are.

For the last seven and a half years, Marianne Ovesen has been part of the management and has had responsibility for global production at the medical company Radiometer. Initially, neither her professional path, nor desired leadership level, were clear, but in hindsight everything fell into place.

“What is exciting about reaching the top is gaining the broad perspective regarding the business and influencing this with your own values. I believe that we women are more holistic in our leadership style. This makes it easier to make and carry out difficult decisions with respect for people.”

Orderliness is a keyword for Marianne, who thinks that a good leader does not fight for their own career and success but for the team and the company. Her field of work is full of responsibility and is both globally and technically oriented, but her dreams started in a completely different place.

Choose According to Your Interest

With the desire to get people to live healthier, Marianne studied food science and taught food technology for the first few years after she graduated. Her brother became a lawyer and her two sisters became a chemical engineer and a pharmacist. All three girls followed a natural science path, just as their father had done.

“When I was young, I rebelled against my engineer father, and I thought that I went in a completely different direction. But I didn’t, and I very quickly ended up in the medical field at Coloplast despite my background in food. After one year, I was offered a management job.”

Because of her own journey, Marianne thinks that we should not be so afraid if we do not choose the perfect educational path from the start, because we will nonetheless end up where we should be. Especially if we choose according to our interests. This already applies when finishing high school, because a high average grade in your final examination results is essential for being able to get a place on your dream education.

Women Supporting Women

Managing 1,150 employees and factories in Denmark, Poland and the USA, there is a lot of travelling in Marianne’s job, and that requires prioritizations in her private life. However, there is more time available today, now that her children are older. When Marianne had twins 16 years ago, she chose to stay in the same job for a number of years.

“When we’re young, we often think it requires something special to move up. Then, when we do it, we discover that we can do it easily. I’ve always been very humble, but I’ve become more confident over time. It’s fun to challenge yourself.”

Radiometer is owned by a US group that is male-dominated, but diversity is on its agenda. Diversity is also a hot theme in the USA, where its growth creation is clearly documented.

“I’ve never experienced that women were hard on each other. At Coloplast, we had a women’s group where we supported each other in order to promote women’s place in management. Here, at Radiometer, I also think that we have sisterly solidarity, and we have an executive-suite with 50% women.”