ORIGINS OF FINTERNATIONAL
Idea of FINternational was not born over a night, it was a result of longer time period. Story combines experience from international environment, people personal experiences, following the public conversation and looking up the future of Finland. Internationalization and employment of professionals was a question that continuously did pop out from somewhere, so it was time to start doing something about it.
FROM A STARTUP INTO A COMMUNITY FOR INTERNATIONAL PROFESSIONALS
Origins goes back even further, but the first bigger kick was on autumn 2017. By that time one of founders, Sami Puttonen, concluded his master thesis about integration of international students into the university and was running a startup, WorkBoost, that decided to focus on finding ways to utilize international talent potential better.
As time passed, WorkBoost did not get well enough on growth tracks and as a summary of several things, it was shut down in December 2018. At the sametime FINternational was established. The highlight of WorkBoost was Summer Camp 2018 -project, where foundation for FINternational was really made. Several experts from different industries were sparring a group of international talents to crack the the problem. The video shows you some experiences from the Summer Camp.
During the project we realised that even that we tried solve the problem, there is no actually on a comprehensive level anyone who could really define and tell a who are international professionals. This was the turning point, when realised that the most important thing are people themselves, as if we can’t know who international professionals are, it is also impossible to help them.
By this time our Summer Camp -ended, but the work still continued a bit longer with WorkBoost. However, as it often happens in startup environment, as summary of many things WorkBoost did not get a good take off and it was decided to close that case. One reason was that in autumn there was not anymore similar group of active brilliant people involved compared to summer.
That was a loop into an understanding, that people make the greatest impact, and what we really need to understand international professionals and businesses problems is a community.
The type of a community that is based on professional mindset and can work as a link between people and organizations. This included understanding that startup was not the right approach on it, instead an association as a non-profit organization was the right path to take.
In December 2018, FINternational was officially established to carry on all the work done so far. The body dies, but the spirit lives, is what we said. It was a start for a community, meaningful and interactive one, built by talents for talents.
FINternational wants to be the home of international professionals connected with Finland with the vision to see increasing diversity in Finnish workplaces. To reach it, there is a way to go but at least we know the direction to take: There are three segments to focus which do wrap up the core questions to focus.
This text was written by Sami Puttonen, co-founder of WorkBoost, and the 1st chairperson of FINternational.
Who are they?
Where they come from?
Set of skills
Which skills they offer?
How can they contribute to Finnish economy?
Pool of opportunities
Which job offers are available?
How to build a career in Finland?