Camilla, what’s your role at McKesson Europe?
I am the HR Director for NMD Norway. We operate 241 pharmacies, two warehouses and have more than 2,500 employees. The HR department has 19 colleagues.
Can you describe your career path so far and what motivated you to take the steps you did?
I’ve grown up in this company! After finishing my studies, I worked as a floating pharmacist for NMD. That gave me the chance to see many pharmacies. A year later, I became an area manager, which was a great way to see how single units can work more streamlined and share best practices. That assignment also motivated me to move to Stuttgart where I became part of the central operations team. There, I had the opportunity to look at how we can leverage synergies within and across countries. I was also fortunate enough to be involved in development of the Steering Wheel tool, now used in several countries.
After Stuttgart, I moved back to Norway to manage one of our 24-hour pharmacies in Oslo. I also studied part time toward a master’s degree in change management, innovation and strategy. It was a good time to put the things I had learned into context.
After finishing the degree, I took on another role with the central team in Stuttgart, followed by an operations director position in Sweden. From there, I was asked to be the acting HR Director in Sweden for a colleague on maternity leave. After a year, I transferred back to Norway to work within the HR department where I am now.
Any surprising change moments in your career?
Well, I didn’t expect to move from operations to HR. It was an opportunity I wasn’t sure about but wanted to try out. It was a good move, and I really like HR. And it makes sense, too, because, in the end, both operations and HR are about working with and enabling people.
What is most interesting if you look back at your own career?
I’m pleased and grateful for the opportunity to have worked in many different countries and see different cultures, to meet people I can learn with and from.
For me, it’s always been about a chance to learn more, develop more and see different sides of the business.Camilla Giske
In your opinion, what are the criteria for a successful career?
Whether a career is successful or not is really up to the person. I judge my own career by whether I enjoyed what I’ve done, had the chance to develop and fulfill my potential.
Did you plan your career path or did you follow opportunity?
I didn’t plan my career. I’ve sought out and followed opportunities. At the beginning, I thought I was going to pursue a clinical pharmacy career, but I decided first to work as a floating pharmacist. One thing led to another, and here I am.
To what extend do you think a career can be planned?
When you start a career, it’s easy to think you can plan it, but then life happens. I believe if you don’t take in what is happening while you’re doing it and develop your plan according to that, you miss something.
What’s next for you professionally?
Since I still consider myself quite new in this profession and in my role of HR, I would like to continue developing in HR.
What one piece of advice would you give someone who is starting a career at McKesson Europe?
Seek out opportunities outside your own country and area of business. Get a different perspective. Even if you end up in a different field than where you started, that’s not a bad thing.
What did you dream about becoming when you were a child?
An air hostess! It was about adventure, traveling the world.
It's Sunday afternoon. Where would we find you?
I would be at home, cooking Sunday dinner and socialising with friends and family.