Reminiscing, he remembers his first encounter with Novo Nordisk.
“ I come from a small town in Algeria, which also happened
to be one of the very few places in the world where Novo
Nordisk had established a factory. In university, we had the
opportunity to visit the factory and I remember being so
impressed to see that this global pharmaceutical company was
not only respecting the international standards regarding
production and working environment, but was also setting the
bar in the country.”
After graduation, while working as a Business Analyst in the
healthcare industry, Yacine’s curiosity about Novo Nordisk grew.
“ It was hearing from a former colleague her positive
experience within the graduate programme, as well as the
attractive possibilities to work in different countries, that made
me very keen to apply.”
Yacine began the first out of his three rotations in Algeria,
followed by Denmark and Mexico.
Whether he was engaged in market research, working with numbers,
or developing a patient support programme, Yacine took each
opportunity to expand his knowledge and further the mission of Novo Nordisk.
“ With the programme, you have the opportunity to explore
different fields both geographically and within the company. It
really encourages you to understand what you enjoy doing and where
you see yourself in the future. Even after the programme, when you
decide to focus on a specific field, you have solid background
knowledge in other fields because of the breadth of your
experience during the two-years within the programme.”
Experiencing your work and social life on three different continents
in two-years requires high levels of adaptability.
But for Yacine, who thrives outside of his comfort zone and seeks
to always stay open-minded, he approached these new challenges
tenaciously, seeing each as a new opportunity for learning.
“ The culture shock wasn’t so big when I moved to Denmark,
my working style was quite similar- very structured and time
focused. When I moved to Mexico, that was a very positive
cultural shock both on a personal and professional level. In
general, they were much more relaxed and take time to do
things. For example, working hours were much longer, but
lunch breaks were also much longer. Wherever you end up as a
graduate, people will work differently, but that doesn’t
mean one does it better than the other. It is easy to have
your own perspective on how things should be done, but you
are the one that needs to adapt rather than expecting others
to adapt to the standard approach you have in mind; this is
also key if you want to be considered a part of the team.”
Work in the Mexican affiliate office was conducted in English;
however, Yacine said learning Spanish was beneficial for working with
the salesforce, and in his daily life.
“ Novo Nordisk provided me with a weekly Spanish teacher
that would come to the office. From my 8 months in Mexico, I
had a decent grasp on the language and had the chance to
conduct several workshops and trainings in Spanish. Learning
a new language was an additional challenge, but an
unexpected asset I gained from the programme.”