“I like to cross lines and groups”: Meet Maersk Tankers’ new Chief Human Resources Officer
At a conference in England, her life plans changed. “I met a Danish guy and got redirected because of love,” she recalls.
More than two decades later, having learnt Danish and made a new life in Denmark, Annelise is settling in at Maersk Tankers: “My starting point is to ensure that what we are doing in the HR space fulfils our company purpose.”
“Pioneer” is the key word for her, she says. “We want to be at the forefront of innovation and change. Leadership and a diverse and inclusive employee composition will nurture pioneering ideas and solutions for shipowners in our pools and the environment.”
Annelise emphasises the importance of talent and culture: “We want to attract the best new colleagues to the company, build the competencies of our existing people and ensure a culture where everyone thrives.”
“We need people with deep industry knowledge, and people who look at things with new eyes is equally important in today’s shipping environment.”
“You can get caught up with the idea that you need shipping experience to become a leader – that needs challenging. It’s more about values, competencies and learning potential.”
Annelise moved to Maersk Tankers from management consultants Korn Ferry, but the bulk of her HR career has been spent in “big companies that invest in people and nurture teams.”
She spent almost 12 years at pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk, starting in leadership development and ending as Vice President for Corporate Talent & Leadership.
“I went from teaching leadership to going into a business role, which was pretty foreign to me,” she recalls. “The now CEO of Novo Nordisk was heading up the IT area at the time and took me on as his business partner. He hired me on potential rather than experience – and that forms my talent philosophy today. I remember when he told me that I had made the biggest impact on his leadership team. That felt amazing and was a turning point in my career.”
Almost 25 years since arriving in Europe, Annelise feels as much Danish as American. “When I left the US, I was a student living in an apartment downtown; my working years have been in Denmark. I’ve raised two kids here. I’m a hybrid of a Dane and an American,” she says and laughs.
This diversity, she believes, is an advantage in business. “I like to cross lines and groups, and in global companies you get to do that all the time, trying to get the pieces to fit together and create something even better.”
About Maersk Tankers
Maersk Tankers is a leading player in the product tanker industry, operating one of the largest fleets of vessels and employing 3,000 employees worldwide. Established in 1928, Maersk Tankers has more than nine decades of experience and expertise in commercial and technical vessel management, providing partners with solutions that generate greater economic and environmental performance and customers with safe, efficient and flexible services.