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Relocation Stories at PUMA

November 25, 2021

Relocation Stories at PUMA

November 25, 2021

International experience always has a positive impact on our employees´ lives and careers. It gives them a chance to experience new cultures and to broaden their horizons. Going overseas can be a challenging experience, this is true. But going through it and coming out from the other side gives people a greater sense of confidence in themselves. At PUMA, we encourage our employees to experience that path as part of our internal mobility program. Here, four PUMA employees open up about their personal relocation experiences.

Cecilia Jacobi

Merchandising Planning Teamhead

Tell us about your relocation path.

In 2017, I started at PUMA Argentina as a Retail Business Planner. A year later, I was changed into another position as a Retail Planning Teamhead. After some months, I was offered to go to Brazil for three months to help in the retail and e-commerce planning. I accepted the offer without hesitation. When it was time to go back to Argentina, I was given the offer to stay in the position as Planning Merchandising Teamhead permanently. Finally, I moved to San Pablo in September 2019.

What do you like about the experience?

It is such a fruitful experience. Not only on a professional level, but also, on a personal level. Since I arrived in Brazil, there is not a day that I did not learn something new. It is such a different culture and a completely new language. The opportunity of getting to know new people is remarkable. I highly recommend it.

Did you struggle in the beginning?

Of course! At first, it was difficult for me to leave my country and more than anything, my family, my friends, and my home. But the challenge of moving to another country was what made me take the decision. I love taking risks and plunging into new adventures. I was truly sure that what I was going to learn, was going to be worth it and superior to any difficulty I may have.

Why did you choose to relocate?

I always had the idea of living in another country for some time. The fact of arriving in Brazil temporarily and then staying permanently made the decision easier.

I really like new experiences and challenges and living abroad is without any doubt a constant challenge where the key is the capacity to adapt.

Nikolay Lukin

Manager Global Retail Digital Learning

Tell us about your relocation path. Where were you prior to this?
In 2020, I was a Manager People Development & Organizational Learning at PUMA Russia and was responsible for the T&D function for Russia and Ukraine. At that time, I had six years of experience at PUMA. I decided to apply for a position in the Global Retail Team. After several interviews and test assignment I was selected as the final candidate. So, on October 1, 2020 I became Manager Global Retail Digital Learning, based at PUMA ´s HQ in Herzogenaurach, Germany.

What do you like about the experience?
Just recently a year has passed since me and my family moved to Germany. During this time, we have encountered a lot of support from all sides. This was probably the most amazing and enjoyable of this completely new experience. The place of our relocation perfectly matched our needs. We are a real outdoor family. We are enjoying all sorts of activities: Biking, skiing, trekking in the mountains. In the big city of Moscow those activities were hard to manage sometimes. We are very much enjoying it now.

Did you struggle in the beginning?
PUMA supported every step of the way. But of course, there were some difficulties that we faced. The main challenge was that our move coincided with the coronavirus pandemic. This was reflected in everything from the difficulties associated with applying for visas and ending with the purchase of plane tickets. Probably, this is the main obstacle we faced. All other moments, such as finding a suitable apartment, applying for school and kindergarten turned into day-to-day tasks that only required a little persistence, positive thinking, and an agile mindset.

Why did you choose to relocate?
Our family has always traveled a lot. For winter holidays to Finland, in summer to Italy and to many other countries. Always when we traveled outside Russia, we thought about what it meant to live in this country in which we were tourists. At some point we realized that we want to live this experience and while our children are in preschool age, this is the most suitable moment.

Alina Rybalkina

Manager Retail Controlling

Tell us about your relocation path. Where were you prior to this?
I have been working at PUMA Russia since 2013. During these eight years, I have gained valuable experience. I have grown from an Accountant to a Junior Manager Finance Controlling. It was a really friendly, warm and fruitful part of my life in the PUMA family. Then it was time to move on, because development is what keeps us alive.

What do you like about the experience?
It is fantastic to have the chance to gain international experience in finance. When I found out about the possibility of working in PUMA´s headquarter as a Manager Retail Controlling, after evaluating my knowledge and experience, I firmly decided that I should take this chance. The PUMA HQ is the place where everything originates and I’m very pleased to be a part of it. This is a great new step for me and a challenge to myself.

Did you struggle in the beginning?
I’m inclined to say “no”. I have a fabulous retail controlling team. They helped me to adapt, were responsive and carefully explained all the nuances of the work. For example, they told me that the side dish of potatoes can be cold. Now I love German potato salad. 🙂
Besides that, my work is similar to what I did in Russia, but now I’m on the other side of the process. I’m not preparing financial reports as before but I’m checking the ones sent by the certain areas.

I must admit, I expected to have more stress in the beginning. I like to travel, but I’ve never been to Germany before. And that’s cool! I find a lot of similarities between German and Russian culture and I am feeling comfortable here.

Silvia Guzman

Head of Finance, Brazil

Tell us about your relocation path. Where were you prior to this?
I started with PUMA as an Account Receivable Manager in Mexico. I held different positions in Finance over a period of six years. After that, I moved to Santiago in Chile as a Controller PUMA Chile & Perú. One year later I worked as Regional Controller. After five years in Santiago, I moved to Sao Paulo in Brazil as Head of Finance. This is now three month ago.

What do you like about the experience?
The non-stop learning experience. It is incredible and amazing to work with people from different cultures. I really enjoy the way of thinking because I have learned to see things from a different perspective and that has helped me to grow personal and as a professional.

Did you struggle in the beginning?
A change always brings new challenges, but PUMA has always supported me in a good way. The support of my family is also a huge help.

Why did you choose to relocate?
It is a great opportunity professionally. I also realized, I was looking for a new challenge. The relocation was one of the best decisions. I am very grateful for that.

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