“At ERA I never stop learning, every day is different.”

Meet Valdrin Shehu, one of the youngest partners at ERA Norway. Highly ambitious and with a strong work ethic, this Kosovan analyst and sales management specialist thrives in the face of challenge.

You seem to be a highly driven person, judging from the impressive resume you have achieved for a 35-year-old. What made you join ERA?

I don’t like routine, it is not for me. For a decade I had more operative positions where it felt like every day was the same. That kind of work just doesn’t make me happy. On the other hand, I never stop learning at ERA – he continues – Every day is different. With each project and each new company, I meet new people, get to know new processes, and I take a deep dive into a topic I had never considered. I get to use my expertise to meet new challenges every day. It broadens my experience, and continuous professional growth is extremely important to me.

Valuable time

Most of the time that Valdrin spends as an analyst goes into researching the challenge at hand.

I am more interested in process optimization, rather than just relying on finding better pricing. This means that my job requires a lot of reading. I work 60 to 70 hours a week, and most of that time goes to research. This is what our clients need, since they can’t use their resources to specialise in narrow topics that are not at the core of the company’s mission.

You seem to be very dedicated to your work. What would you do if you had an extra day to do anything?

I do take 3-4 days off every once in a while. But if I had one extra day every week, I would spend it with my daughter. She’s 17 months old, and she’s the only one that has the power to make me stop or refuse a project, he adds laughing.

What other skills do you bring to the table?

I am persistent, and like Frank Rognli (ERA Norway’s country manager) says, I tend to think outside the box. This gives me an edge to find opportunities where there seemed to be none.

Work hard, play hard

This unusual way of looking at things, comes partly from his experience working and studying in several different countries: Kosovo, Switzerland, Albania… Currently, Valdrin spends most of his time in Norway, and sometimes travels to Albania, since he has a special dispensation to operate business in the Balkans.

I love travelling, I’ve been all over the place. If I could go anywhere right now, I would love to see the wildlife in Africa and the Amazon. Other passions of mine are downhill skiing and riding motorbikes. I used to be into sports bikes, but I currently ride a Harley-Davidson, he comments with a smile.

Out of the comfort zone

It’s clear that you’re always up for a challenge, so what is the most challenging aspect of your work at ERA?

Reserving a time slot in a decision maker’s calendar can be difficult. Once they agree to sit down with you, it’s a different matter, they get what we do. With each project, we deliver something that neither we nor the client knows what it will look like. So, it is a matter of building trust and relationships, and that takes time – he explains.

Another significant hurdle is getting people to overcome their aversion to change. Helping people leave their comfort zone. That’s where the biggest challenge, and also where the biggest opportunities lie.

Would you like to find out what our specialists can do for your business? Get in touch with us today.