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A place big enough to make a difference but small enough for me to make a difference

– I’ve worked for some of the biggest companies in the world, as well as some smaller ones. I learned that I need to be at a place that is big enough to make a difference but small enough for me to make a difference right away, says business consultant, Lasse Dahl Hansen.

In 2023, Mazeppa employed six young and talented people in a trainee program we’re setting up together with our biggest partner, Infor. The goal is to find new talent and develop the next generation of ERP consultants.

Hansen is 37 years old from a very small town in the south of Denmark, just by the German border, called Tønder. He’s a passionate worker, someone who deep dives into the work at hand and who loves to learn new things. Hansen is also active in Danish politics.

– On the organizational side, mind you, I’m not running in any election. I sit in the leadership of one of the political parties in Denmark. Not surprising, I’m passionate about our root causes: people having freedom to do what they want, Hansen says.

Apart from politics and a love for music, Hansen marks that he doesn’t have any concrete hobbies, rather he enjoys life: good food, good wine, good music.

From politics to ERP

As far as being a trainee goes, Hansen is almost over-qualified, having a solid educational background and a lot of previous experience working with ERP – but from the other side of the table.

– Having first completed a bachelor’s degree that would only be useful if I wanted to work in public sector (which I didn’t), I worked a few years as a team leader in a warehouse, before going back to school to study logistic management, says Hansen.

He finished his second degree in 2014 and has since been working with procurement, planning, and as project manager in different IT projects – also doing ERP implementations.

– Hence, I have a lot of experience with ERP, working with some of the biggest systems there is, not on the technical side, but rather with change management.

After a while, Hansen felt he reached at a point in his career where the natural choice would be to become a middle manager with staff responsibility. That choice didn’t feel right, having touched upon the consultant business, a career change was much more appealing.

– I had so far only been on the other side of the table, but I liked what I saw so I thought: If I were to go down that path, I needed to hit the right company.


Not just a cog in the wheel

The right company turned out to be Mazeppa: A company big enough to get interesting projects and attract different competences, but small enough for Hansen not to become “a cog in the wheel”.

– I don’t want to be a very small ant at a big company, just following orders. I’ve done that while working as a logistics controller where I had no leeway. That just killed me.

– I feel at home at Mazeppa: They are some of the smartest people I’ve ever worked with. At the same time, they’re open, welcoming, and supportive. They let us grow and influence, and they let us make our own mistakes; helping us when we fail without holding our hand the entire time, says Hansen.

It was over a year and a half ago, that Hansen first spoke with Christian Gierahn, country manager for Denmark, about joining Mazeppa. However, Hansen knew that being hired as a consultant right away wouldn’t work.

– Even though I knew ERP, I needed to get a way in to the more technical side. So, when Christian reached out again, ready to kickstarted the trainee program I knew I wanted to be apart of it.


An ever-changing business

The most significant thing Hansen has learned so far, he says, are the soft skills: about what the consulting role is and how you act in a project and toward a customer.

– I can learn to work in any system but to succeed in the consulting role is something completely different. That’s where I feel I’ve grown the most.

Having spent seven months at Mazeppa, and his biggest expectation of being challenged met, Hansen sees himself being in the business for many years.

– This is the place where you can stay in the same position without doing the same job. This business will always be interesting, always evolving and you’ll always get new challenges.

Hansen has great faith in trainee programs like Mazeppa’s being the right way to get fresh blood into the industry. Reskilling or upskilling people from different educational and professional backgrounds.  

– It shows that Mazeppa have the intention of still developing, still being relevant and being an interesting place to work. If I were to hire a company, being on the other side of the table, it would weigh heavily that Mazeppa do more than “just” consulting, and actually making a difference.