Defining the ‘How’

Ensto’s new CEO, Markku Moilanen, has inherited a set of core values and a clear goal. His challenge: Articulate the “how” to chart Ensto’s course to growth and profitability.

While the “what” and “where” (to do business) aspects of Ensto’s strategy have been decided, Markku Moilanen, Ensto Group’s new President and CEO, is now charged with developing the “how” of things: how to make it all happen.

“The ‘where’ is DSOs-plus,” he says, ”meaning that our customer base focus includes distribution system operators, but also other utilities and even some industrial customers who have electricity distribution networks. What’s left to do is define the ‘how’: Which geographies? Which technologies? Which part of the value chain? That’s the work we’re going to do.”

Core values

However Ensto defines the “how,” one thing remains the same: “The world changes, the company changes, but our values don’t change,” Moilanen says.

“Trust capital has always defined Ensto, our relationship with employees, customers, and surrounding society.” Creativity and innovation is another enduring value. “Ensio Miettinen was an innovator, both in production and in products. And also winning together. We win over the customers and win their trust. We win over our team members. We win over ourselves sometimes, if we’re having a tough morning.”

“And of course, there’s sustainability. In Ensio’s time it wasn’t part of our slogan, but Ensto has always been sustainable. For me, integrity toward the environment is sustainability, solutions for ourselves and future generations that help the world use electricity in a more sustainable way.”

Ensto today

To Moilanen, who assumed his post on June 1, Ensto’s core values are a critical foundation on which to build a future in an environment where everything is fluid.

Moilanen’s work for his doctoral degree dealt with industry evolution. He speaks of survival, which is critical to family companies like Ensto. And even the biggest, he says, have to change to survive. “Nokia once made rubber boots, then mobile phones, and now they make something else.”

Managing change is tricky in the electricity distribution business which, despite its appetite for tech solutions, Moilanen says is still in many ways quite traditional, “Yes, it’s tech-oriented, but on the other hand it has a high level of standards, and strict demands for security and reliability, which makes the engineers in the industry often conservative – with a need to see things before they’ll believe them. What is great is that we’re engineers, too, and our engineers can prove to them that our tech works.”

Ensto tomorrow

“With same spirit of creativity and innovation, serving customers, winning together, we need to look forward and have a dialogue with customers and wider stakeholders, including regulators, politicians, and industrialists. Where’s the world going? What do we need? What are tomorrow’s challenges? We’ll listen to stakeholders. Give them our views.”

That dialogue will help Ensto focus on innovation in areas where it can solve both today’s and tomorrow’s challenges. “I believe we’ll see new technology differentiating Ensto more than ever before. The latest acquisitions, like Arcteq and Protrol, are good examples. We’ll develop these internally together with our partners, and also examine opportunities through mergers and acquisitions.”

As early as his first week at Ensto, Moilanen emphasized profitability, competitiveness, and the right to grow as components of a great workplace. "The right to grow is to understand that growth takes investments. If we enter new geographies or develop new products or acquire a company, these all need investments. And that money comes from the profits. And a competitive, successful, developing and growing company is a good place to work."