Navigating life with quality as a compass.

A portrait of Johan Nyman, Product Manager, Tecca

Johan Nyman is Product Manager at Tecca (formerly T-Emballage Bygg) in Vetlanda. He has a humble northern presence and exudes wisdom rooted in decades of industry experience and a lifelong passion for building. We sat down and talked about his 25 years with the company and about the importance of constantly evolving.

How would you describe the path to your current professional life?

I became interested in building products and construction very early on. As a child, I loved building things at home in the garage. After high school I started at Borohus. When the company went bankrupt in the early nineties, I had odd jobs for a while. My dad suggested that I should get a license to drive busses and trucks as it could provide the basis for a future career. In 1996, that license came in handy when I applied for a job as truck driver at Tecca.
I distributed materials to hardware stores and house factories in the immediate area.

After two years as a driver, I began working at the warehouse. I worked there for two years as well. Then another two years as an indoor salesman. From 2002 to 2018, I worked in outdoor sales. Initially, focusing on the trade of building materials and house factories. I was really into home construction which is why after a few years my role changed so that I got to work only towards factories that produce prefabricated homes. I got to be a part of laying the foundation for our offer to this particular customer group.

“How you succeed in your career depends on whether you get the chance to show what you can really do. I got the chance and that was absolutely crucial to my career.”

I have been working as a Product Manager since 2018. I am responsible for driving product development and to keep a holistic view of our range of products and solutions. Together with my colleagues I create product concepts and solutions for building materials as well as solutions for protecting building processes. Our systems are designed to make life easier for everyone and at all levels. They make the work easier for our sales people, the customers and finally the end users. The systems should provide guidance for those who plan projects. They should be able to feel confident that they have the right solution for their project. That’s the idea.

How you succeed in your career depends a lot on whether you get a chance to show what you can really do. For example, I am not a person who is good at self promotion. Nevertheless, Tecca gave me a chance and that was crucial to my career. This is probably what everyone wants for their children; a chance at something.

25 years with Tecca has given me a lot of work experience and I’ve learnt many different things over time. Working in sales and meeting many people really gives you experience of handling difficult situations. You learn a lot from that.

When I had just begun working in the field, there was a crisis in the plastics industry. It led to prices increasing by 20 percent during my first month on the job. On my very first visits to customers, I had to tell them that the products would be much more expensive going forward. I was young and inexperienced but it meant I really got to know my customers!
I have learned that honesty is the best policy. To be honest in both adversity and success, when prices go up but also when they go down.

“I have learned that honesty is the best policy. To be honest in both adversity and success, when prices go up but also when they go down.”

What does building projects mean to you?

Around 1999, my wife and I wanted to build a house. The building industry had recently crashed and the timing for building a house was not great. However, my dad became very interested in the idea so we built a detached house together here in Vetlanda. We still live in that house today. Dad had worked as a carpenter and as a house salesman which meant he had great knowledge of building as well as access to a good network within the industry. It was very rewarding and I learnt alot from building a house with him. Six years ago, my wife and I also built a holiday home on Öland.

I enjoy learning new things and creating things myself. I’m pretty meticulous and I rather build too robust than weak. This also applies to me at work – I always want to get things right and everything we do at Tecca to be professional.

Meticulous you say. What other words describe you as a person?

I am prudent and honest. I’m a person who may need a little time to think things over. Sometimes when someone asks me a question, I have to think about it for a day before getting back with a good answer.

Being accurate and thoughtful also leads to me being prepared to hold on to my convictions. Several years ago, we received requests to produce a high quality foil tape. My colleague Nils and I found a good alternative in Germany that we wanted to test at SP (now Rise). The process took some time – too much time, our boss thought. He wanted us to give up the idea. Today, that tape, T-Flex, accounts for a significant part of our sales and is a strong industry brand. It paid off to be patient!

What’s your view on product development in general?

Over the years, it’s been a journey through development phases with different organisations within the company. There has been constant change, both internally and externally. New industries have been created and some have disappeared along the way.

Tecca’s previous owner Håkan said that you have to keep up, see opportunities and be open to change. His words have taught me to always try to stay one step ahead and think outside the box. Perhaps this is one part of the legacy Håkan left to the organization.

“I often went to Håkan with suggestions. He listened, asked what it would cost and, many times, gave me the go-ahead immediately.”

I often went to Håkan with suggestions. He listened, asked what it would cost and, many times, gave me the go-ahead immediately. This fast-paced approach has not changed with Volati as owner.

I feel that the Group wants us to continue to evolve. We are forming our own market niche with Tecca. We are currently working to develop a fossil-free climate shell. It’s a difficult yet important challenge. We try to have an open mind and look for different solutions. I am convinced that the demand for sustainable products and a sustainable holistic approach will only increase.

Do you feel like a ‘Smålänning’ (person from south Sweden)?

I have lived in Vetlanda for 35 years now. Still, I don’t see myself as a Smålänning but rather as a proud northerner. Yes, the northern roots are strong in me. I was born in Luleå and grew up in Piteå. I only came here to Småland with my family as a 15-year-old.

What do you do in your spare time?

I feel creative when I am outdoors exercising. It gives me time to think things through and to come up with solutions. I also like to go to the holiday home on Öland. When I cross the bridge to the island, I always feel a sense of calm. My shoulders drop and I feel completely relaxed. It’s a nice feeling.

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