An interview with Mia Kleregård
Her mission is to contribute to a better world by a bold and sustainable leadership.
She has extensive and global leadership experience and is usually found at the forefront of what is buzzing in the world.
Mia is known to be a driven, goal-oriented leader that achieves amazing results through an inclusive management style based on values and diversity. She creates a culture of innovation, creativity and happiness. Her career has been well rewarded and noticed during the years.
Today we interview Mia Kleregård.
How would you describe yourself in one sentence?
A dynamic leader of tomorrow.
Can you tell us a little bit about your professional background?
It’s not easy to summarize it. Fortunately, I started with a successful career within the tourism industry where my main focus was to establish a travel agency globally by being a destination manager. This filled me with perspective and experiences. It also created a deep interest in psychology, culture and global opportunities.
Already at the age of 26, I was included in the board of directors at Apollo in Norway. I was part of the team that successfully built and received multiple Grand Travel Awards as a travel agency and employer. With my experience to inspire and engage employees and leaders to make the strategies reality, I took the place as one of the most outgoing leaders at Systembolaget.
My role was to be the driving force when service and quality should be developed through passionate leadership and engaged employees. The journey of change is famously called ”From government minded to a service organization” and has received multiple rewards as ”Best in Sweden in Service” by Service Score.
I have participated in several international high-level summits amongst some; UN’s High-Level Launch of the Global Goals and Agenda 2030, and during 2017 I was at UN’s leader’s summit in New York on the topics Bold Leadership and innovations.
I am by heart curious and tend to be looking into the future most of the time. I educated myself at Singularity University in Silicon Valley, to be able to embrace the new technology and continue to lead successfully. During my time at SU, I found a new area of interest in Space Technology and the Emerging Industry and, currently, I am engaged as an advisor to start-ups within the area. I also held the CEO position at Plantagon Production Sweden AB, an innovative tech start-up within urban farming during their go to market process.
Today, I have the honor to mentor in various programs, amongst some, The Royal Foundation for Youth Leadership and the Swedish American Chamber of Commerce Executive Program.
What´s your dream?
My dream was to work in one of the biggest companies within transformation, technology and sustainability. And that has come true, and I am both honored and blessed.
How can we change the world?
We live in a world where the development is at an exponential speed within technology and the demands of a sustainable approach. The structures that we have today will not make it tomorrow. We need to understand that all change starts with ourselves and our own decisions and that it takes an amount of courage to do and act differently. To change the world, we all need to lead.
What are your core values?
Respect and trust.
How would you describe your leadership style?
Inclusive and empowering.
What inspires you as a person?
People inspire me! When I have the honor to see people develop, and take their first steps out of their comfort zone – to grow and thrive. That is truly inspiring for me. ….. And in the bigger picture, to watch the new space businesses emerge, I am more than often a step ahead of the game. So the future inspires me momentually.
Who is your favorite leader? Why?
I can’t say that I have a favorite leader but I do respect and admire leaders for various reasons. Elon Musk for disrupting the world on a first principle thinking, Mahatma Gandhi for the leadership of love and change and Nelson Mandela for the same. Greta for showing the world that one single person can start a change by just acting and using the tools by our hands wisely and for the right reasons, social media.
We follow your social media profiles and love your thoughts. Could you tell us some of the most meaningful quotes that have inspired you to be the person that you are today?
There are so many! Here you have some of them:
«If I can, so can you»
«Be the change you wish to see in the world»
«I believe ordinary people can become extraordinary»
«When people ask what you do, the best response is «Whatever it takes»
How do goals help you become a better leader?
I would say focus helps people to become better leaders, and not necessary goals as such. Vision and a clear mission is more important for myself in my leadership, therefore I create goals and strategy – to move my team forward. To become the very best they can be on the journey they need to understand the bigger picture and the «why» – and that is my responsibility as a leader to both communicate it, and to live it in the team.
What was a difficult decision you had to make as a leader, and how did you come to that decision?
It’s always difficult to address differences and struggles that employees or leaders may have – but that is our responsibility as a leader to do so. And I do, even when it hurts – because I am first and foremost responsible to see that we have the right person at the right tasks – with the values that live in the company. And if not so – I have to act upon it to guide both the team and company in the right direction. Leadership is to show with actions that the words you say – do have a meaning.
What is your preferred method of communication? Why?
Since I love to be on stage to inspire, and currently do not have that in my position. I create a stage wherever I go. I am pretty good with words, energy and enthusiasm. So that together with clear short messages is my communication style. When I see the employees I am always present, and they know I am there to listen and learn. I have an inclusive way of leading my team. I am always there for them.
How can we make our big dream happen?
Depends on what our big dream is? I have created a crystal clear mission for myself in my leadership, and I hope to impact the world to a better place by bold and sustainable leadership. We have a leadership challenge in the world as it is today, and we need the future of leadership to change and to become what it needs to be. For the benefit of Mother Earth and humanity. I hope to be one that impacts in the long run – with love and respect for every living thing, and our ecosystem.
What Challenges do Business face during the Coronavirus Pandemic?
We needed this, if we go out to the bigger picture and take a look back at Earth. The overview effect. We are destroying everything that comes our way, and that is so much not ok. Just by the first week of the Pandemic Mother Earth healed herself. We need to give her time to do that, and this was a way of showing us that it can be done. To be able to survive as a species on Earth we do need to change the way we act, behave and do business. It is just not a sustainable way the way we do it now.
What does The Future Of Work look like in a Post-COVID-19 World?
Hopefully we will learn, and we will change the leadership of the world. We have an opportunity to do so when we have experiences like this. The time is now.
Why Innovation and Exponential Technology is crucial to a company’s long-term success?
I would say it is crucial to the world’s long-term success and survival. This is our key to survival, we need to embrace the new technology to change the way we do business and develop both ourselves and the companies. I think leadership is the key number one here – if you as a CEO of a company do not understand the impact that AI and Quantum computing will have on your business model, it’s time to act now. We have to understand that lifelong learning is a way of living in the future, as of now. We all have to level up our knowledge within technology – our keys to a sustainable future lays before our feet, it’s up to us to pick them up.
Why should all businesses embrace sustainability?
The companies that are not sustainable will not exist in the future, period. The big shift is now, either you are in it or you will not survive.
How to encourage girls into STEM Careers?
I hope to be an inspiration to all girls and women to dare to challenge the norm and to take place in the big rooms and arenas. We are here to create change for us all, with equality and diversity as the core values. We are all needed in this journey to the future. If I can – so can others. Together we grow.
One of your passions is in the field of the emerging Space Tourism and Industry. When did your interest in this topic begin?
I’m an explorer by heart, and you usually find me walking where there is no trail – to leave a trail for others to follow. Exploration is one of my passions, the development of the future of humanity the other. To become multiplanetary is the next phase of mankind – but will we reflect upon our time on this planet and change our behaviour on our way to other galaxies? Or will we conquer and destroy them too? I want to contribute to the impact that we explore space with values of respect, based in a global understanding of peace and a prosperous future for everyone, on Earth and beyond.
We hope you visit Finca Solmark soon. What do you think about this ecological project?
Such a good initiative, and I’m so inspired to see it develop and grow. Together we can change the world!
How can we contribute to a better world?
To change the world we all need to lead. Every small decision we take everyday has an impact on the future of our kids. So the more consciousness we show in the daily choices, the better future we can create.
Any final thoughts you’d like to share with our followers?
To develop hurts, and we are hurting right now. But when we come out on the other side of the Pandemic we can truly continue to make a change in both our private lives, as in businesses – as in the leadership of the world. Let us use our voices together – for a sustainable future for all of us and Mother Earth. If not now, when? If not here, where? If not you, who? Together we can.
SOBRE FINCA SOLMARK
Finca Solmark es un EcoTurismo Rural de origen hispano-sueco que se dedica a la fabricación, comercialización y exportación de aceite de oliva, aguacate y otros productos ecológicos a Europa. Dispone de un alojamiento rural con encanto y de varios proyectos de concienciación, divulgación y educación medioambiental.