“The people-loving advisor”

Petter Dolk, Head of HR Consultants at Telia Company in Sweden

Petter Dolk has been working in HR for thirteen years and is now part of driving a change journey at Telia. He is leading a group of human resources professionals and people specialists to work as a common consulting team and serve the whole organization, across all markets with valuable advice on both small and major matters.

“I came to Telia in 2012 as HR Manager. Since then, I have grown from that role to taking on the responsibility as Head of HR at Cygate, a Telia subsidiary. After two years at Cygate, where I developed new ways of working, we started a change journey within HR and we created an internal hub of HR professionals. I got the opportunity to build and lead the People HUB First Line. Today, I am leading different HR teams within the People HUB, taking new exciting steps on our journey by increasing our common ways of working even more.”

Continually growing

Since I came to Telia, I have continually been facing new opportunities and taking on new responsibilities, and I have learnt a lot of new things. And through my experiences, I think that I have grown from being a manager of a small team to feeling comfortable in leading a big team of professionals.”

Taking care of customers

”Before Telia, I spent twelve years at SAS. Before I started my HR career there, I worked as cabin crew. I enjoyed working close to our customers and being part of delivering our experience. My biggest learning from those years is how important the corporate culture is for the customer experience we deliver. And this is something I work a lot with at Telia. We need to constantly nourish our strong purpose-led, value-based culture in order to deliver the best possible service to our customers. As a leader, I believe that I take a big responsibility in sustaining that culture. It starts with setting clear goals for my team, but also by communicating and relating to our values and purpose over and over again.”

Adding value in different ways

“The People HUB is supporting the entire Telia organization with HR advice and support. Most questions are handled in our People HUB First Line, where we are aiming to provide support to less complex matters straight away. Support in more complicated situations will be handled in a consultative way by our People specialists and experts.”

Transparency is key

”Telia is creating increasingly more common functions and roles across our markets, which means that we strive to make our HR delivery fit into that new setting. It is exciting work that call for a lot of changes to how we work. But regardless of what my team is working on, I believe that they trust me to be transparent in all situations. Transparency is key to creating trust in your team. I also put a lot of trust in my teams, and I have grown to become very persistent – because today I know that success sometimes take a while.”

Growing as a leader

“Over the years, I have understood that being a good leader does not necessary mean that I need to be an expert in HR. In the beginning, I spent a lot of time advising colleagues in HR matters. Well over 50 percent of my time was spent coaching and supporting people around the organization. Today, that has changed completely. I now spend most of my time leading my team, and much less on different cases. Now I have the time to lead my team properly, but I also have time over to work on more strategic initiatives, which also makes me grow and develop.”

An expanding operation

“The demand of our services will always be there, but the pressure will vary over time. To cope with variation, we are constantly developing and improving our processes, trying to find new solutions. We want all managers to be able to find important information easier through different digital channels like the intranet, rather than calling the First Line when they need support.”

Leading a change process

“Working in a continually changing environment, requires that I have to secure that we deliver our support, I also have to make sure that my team is on board and willing to be on the journey with me. I try to be present and raise questions and concerns at an early stage. My ambition is that my team members are ambassadors and proud of both what and how we deliver our services and support. Being proud makes it more fun for everyone.”

I believe in feedback

”In my role as a leader, I work a lot with feedback. I try to focus on what’s positive, but I welcome input on all areas that call for improvement. I also believe in transparency in my leadership. And I know that when people sense that I am open and honest about myself, and when they realize that I truly stand for who I am and what I think, they trust me – and trust is key to building strong teams.”

"Telia has created a people hub, which works like an internal consultancy for people and HR matters. When implementing new ways of working, you need to focus on communications. You need to anchor your ideas with your leaders to secure resources, you need to communicate your ideas and the process to your team in order to get them inspired and all fired up. And when leading change projects, it is also important to pave the way for your new solution by communicating with the people who will be affected by the outcome of the change you are creating. In my case the end users were all leaders in our organization with a responsibility to lead and hire people.”

My key advice to other leaders

  1. Set joint goals for your team
  2. Be transparent in all situations
  3. Be persistent, success sometimes take a while


I have a Bachelor of Science from Uppsala University. I also studied to become a nurse but gave up before my exams.

Life before Telia
I worked for Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) for many years. First as part of the cabin crew, and later as part of the HR team.

Life outside work
Hiking is my passion, but also spend a lot of time in my summer house reading and seeing friends. To be fit is important, so I spend a lot time working out too.

Me and my partner Ole have a nine-year-old flat coated retriever.

Something you didn´t know about me
I never miss The Eurovision Song Contest. I watch the show live every year.