Financial Directors Iiris Komulainen and Pauliina Timlin
Hi! I'm Iiris Komulainen, and I recently retired from Genelec after a long and enjoyable stint as Financial Director.
My story here started back in 2006. I'd just been working five years in Tanzania, had completed my Bachelor of Business Administration in International Entrepreneurship degree and I was working as Project Manager for the Territorial Employment Pact EU project. During summer of that year, Genelec advertised for a new Finance Manager, and the position was exactly what I'd been waiting for.
The job offered me a fulfilling role in an international working community, and it was well in line with my chosen profession. At the interview, Genelec Co-Founder Ilpo Martikainen, accompanied by my predecessor and current Chairwoman of the Board, Ritva Leinonen, and my future supervisor, then CEO Veikko Hyvönen, painted the perfect picture of a company I might feel at home with. At some point in the discussion, I was asked to name the book I last read and a film I have enjoyed. It was nice to be asked that because I've always loved reading and watching good films. As I recall, most of the interview was spent talking about books and films! As we eventually came to an agreement about the working position, Ilpo said, in his calm and considered way, "Well, if you coped in Tanzania, you'll do well here."
In the 16 years since - up until my retirement - my responsibility has been to plan, implement, monitor, develop and manage Genelec's financial activities, helping the company achieve its strategic and operational objectives, in both the short and long term. My day-to-day tasks have ranged from the very smallest details of our finances to the wider health of the company. Together, our finance team has been able to ensure that all of Genelec's financial and payroll functions run smoothly and on time, providing information that our colleagues and external stakeholders rely on.
There's an old saying here that "The years are not brothers". Indeed, they haven't been, and neither have the working days been very similar during my time at Genelec. As a company, we've developed, learnt, grown and evolved, always with a sense of purpose and loyalty towards our core values. It's been a great privilege to build this path together with all the fantastic people here. I've learned something new every day and encountered wonderful people and cultures, both within the company and in collaboration with customers, suppliers and partners. To me, people are the best and most important thing!
I often look back fondly on the times I've been recognised for contributing to Genelec's story, usually being caught when I least expect it! Those are very treasured memories. I also have many comforting memories of how I've been supported here during a few of my life's toughest moments. With a sense of absolute gratitude, I can remember so many wonderful things about being at Genelec. Not least, I recall the heartfelt speech Ilpo made at my 50th birthday: "I hope that, in time, you will retire with us at Genelec." And so it was.
Iiris, Annikki and Ilpo Martikainen.
For 45 years, I've shared my life with my partner Sulevi, with whom I have a son called Otto and a daughter called Oili, both of which are now grown up and living away from home. Proudly, both our children have become a part of Genelec in their own capacity. Not so long ago, my mother spent the last five years of her life being cared for by us at our home, and nowadays we look after Sulevi's mother here.
We've both lived and worked all over the world, from north of the Arctic Circle to south of the Equator. I've had a real range of working and life experiences in business, development, public and private sector projects, the armed forces and various types of organisations. At the end of the day though, family has always been my loving, supportive and reliable foundation for everything else.
My partner and I have always travelled a lot, except during the last few years. We have a lovely holiday cabin in Kuusamo, Finland, where we can relax in the summer. Our garden at home in Iisalmi is also perfect for a bit of peace and quiet in the warmer months. I must say that a good meal with close family, friends and relatives is one of life's essentials, no matter where you are.
It's important to me that we take care of this world, and I'm happy that Genelec puts a lot of effort into sustainability. My experience of living in East Africa for five years and working side by side with young Tanzanians and their families showed me how little people can live on and how unnecessary much of our western consumption and materialism is. In my opinion, sustainable development should help make our entire global ecological footprint as even as possible, regardless of where someone lives. Finland's footprint is now five times that of Tanzania, so in essence, Tanzanians could have more, and we could give something up.
To become something,
to go towards something,
or to let the swing of the steps
take you into the world of wonders
where the scent of the flowers
remains on your skin
like a loving look
for solace on a cold day.
Veikko Hyvönen, from his poem 'Three Rooms'.
This excerpt from a poem, by the very same Veikko that welcomed me into Genelec, feels to me like an uncanny description of how my life has panned out. It's been more about following the paths of chance than any kind of purposeful direction. It's been a journey forged by what I've experienced and learned, and sensations that remain present on my skin, just as he describes.
Now, however, I'm moving on to another way of life again, leaving work behind to enjoy new things in new ways. Pauliina Timlin is the new Financial Director of Genelec, and I wish her all the best! You have my full support, Pauliina!
Hello! I'm Pauliina Timlin, Financial Director of Genelec since the beginning of 2023.
I started here in September 2019 as Financial Controller, and before that I worked as an auditor in North Ostrobothnia. I was born in Finland's Savo region - which includes Genelec's Iisalmi base - and my heart longed to return home after about 10 years away from the area. When I saw the advertised position at Genelec, it was just what I was hoping for!
Since I started, I've supervised our finance team, managed monthly accounting and reporting, and taken responsibility for our financial management system development and automation projects. In preparation for my new role, I've had the opportunity to familiarise myself with a wide range of further financial management tasks and responsibilities.
One of the most enjoyable aspects of my job is working with others at Genelec. Our conversational atmosphere and open working style have helped me see other people's perspectives on issues that I personally look at from the financial management side. This cross-functional idea exchange has enabled me to develop and deepen our overall approach to Genelec's finances.
During my first year, I visited our subsidiaries in China and the US. It was great to get to know our colleagues face to face, with whom we otherwise communicate mainly through video calls. Next, I'd like to meet the great people at our Japanese subsidiary!
My husband Tero-Pekka and I moved to Iisalmi in autumn 2019, just as I started working at Genelec. We have twin boys together called Nooa and Niilo, born in February 2022. I spent the first year with them at home on maternity leave, and now my husband and I have changed roles, with him staying to look after our boys while I work.
I started to do Pilates during my maternity leave, but otherwise, I spend my free time with my family. I simply enjoy being with them, whether we're at home or travelling elsewhere. Music and reading are also hobbies that I love.
I hope to ensure that the world will be a pleasant and safe place for our children to live in. I want the next generation to enjoy the clean nature and healthy environment that we've had. If we lead by example, both at work and in our personal lives, I'm sure we can make this wish a reality.