He says himself that he's happy to remain in the background, but clearly he has high ambitions for the company and its production quality. It's the unique product developed by the family business that he'd rather put in the spotlight. Johan Fahlén is Production Manager at Stringo.
Johan looks up from his computer and spends a few moments considering what to say about himself and his role.
"I've never really pictured myself sitting behind a desk," he says. "But, naturally, it seemed exciting to accept responsibility for purchasing and production at the company my dad had built up, so when asked I said yes."
Stringo is a family business. It was Johan's father, Göran Fahlén, who founded what was then known as Famek in the mid-80s. And both Johan and his sister, Nina, who is now CEO of the company, have been involved from the very start. The family was on one of their early house trailer trips when the turning point came – Audi and BMW had each ordered a Stringo vehicle mover. Since then, Stringo has been a natural part of their family life and Johan has followed its development at close range.
In 2012, he was asked whether he'd like to work at the company. He was to be in charge of purchasing and production.
"Naturally, it feels good to be able to continue taking care of what my dad has built up. What's more, I really enjoy working with my sister, Nina. We've both been hanging around here at the company since we were kids, and that creates a special feeling."
The first few years looking after purchasing and production, his focus was mostly on purchasing. Johan's ability to see the details and find effective solutions has enabled the company to develop its procedures and refine its purchasing activities to better suit the production found at the company today.
The company has experienced strong growth in recent years, and this has meant organizational changes. Purchasing has been moved within the organization and Johan is now fully focused on production.
"It feels right. In 2017 and 2018, we sold record numbers of vehicle movers. This places increasingly stricter demands on effective production with retained quality. Now that responsibility for purchasing has been transferred elsewhere, I can focus on creating a production organization with greater long-term viability."
One challenge Johan has embraced over the past year is delivery reliability. The record sales recorded over the past two years have increased the demands on production being able to get the necessary materials in on time and on organizing the manufacturing process in such a way that each vehicle mover is shipped on time. These are issues that Johan has resolved.
"I consider keeping delivery times a quality issue," says Johan. "It's not simply a case of producing a world-leading product, we also have to deliver on service and ensure the trust of our customers. This is why we've now worked on developing our production flows and creating job rotation for our staff. It's essential that everyone understands just how important it is for us to keep our promises. And these efforts have paid off."
Quality is something that Johan is passionate about. His involvement and interest in every aspect of production also gives him a good overall picture and Johan is now looking forward to tackling even more parts of the process.
"I want to continue developing our production, in part by helping the production team to find work methods and an approach that tallies with the company's goals. We build high-quality vehicle movers. And so our production process should also be of the same high quality. It's a matter of both creating pride in ourselves and showing our customers that we maintain the same high quality throughout the entire chain."