From intern to employee

Mathias Ege Dahl Jensen

"Today, I’m leading over 30 people. My journey has been pretty wild."

  • About Mathias

    Position: Head of Group, Plastcon, MAKEEN Energy Denmark
    Education: Technology Management and Marine Engineering
    Intern: 2017
    Employee: 2018

How did you end up as an intern at MAKEEN Energy? What did you do before?

I was studying Technology Management and Marine Engineering, and back then LNG (liquified natural gas) was a super-hot topic. Everyone was expecting LNG to play a big part in fueling the marine transport sector, and I thought it would be interesting to get to know more about this area. I asked my teacher if there were any companies in Denmark where I could learn more about LNG, and I was told that I was lucky, because MAKEEN Energy was actually just such a company and actually also the only company in Denmark dealing with LNG. And I thought “great!” and I applied for an internship here and I got it.

Describe your journey to where you are now

During my 3-month internship I felt insecure at times, but the trust from my leaders really made me like being here. I’d say that I worked pretty hard, but I also wanted the responsibility that I was given.

After my internship, a permanent position as System Engineer was posted. I was almost done with my studies, so I decided to apply. I went through a conventional recruiting process with other applicants, but ended up getting the job. There’s not a lot of people with experience with cryogenic gases, so of course my internship and knowing people here was a benefit.

Not long after starting my job, my boss – who was really great, by the way, haha – got a new job. The whole team back then was very young, most people were under 35, and we were mixing roles and responsibilities a lot. After some time, I was doing more and more sales, and I started missing the engineering and project execution. Our Plastic conversion department (Plastcon) was just starting up, and so I asked my boss if I could help there 10% of my time. Back then Plastcon consisted of one intern and one Technical Supervisor who has been with MAKEEN Energy for 25 years, so it was okay with him that I helped there. Slowly the 10% became 20%, then 40%, then 60%, then 90%.. Then, in the end, I said to my boss: “Give me the responsibility and I’ll show you that I’ve got what it takes”. I guess I convinced him, because I was fully transferred to Plastcon and became Team Leader. We've grown more than anyone could have expected. Today I’m leading over 30 people. My journey has been pretty wild.

What was your first experience with MAKEEN Energy like?

Really cool! People believe in you. And actually, I’d say that’s it’s entirely up to you how far you want to develop here and how much responsibility you want to take. If you truly want to be here, you can do almost anything you want.

I felt from my first day that we’re a value-based company. The values of being passionately involved, of taking ownership, and of making others good - that’s actually how the company works. If you work by these values, then there’s plenty of jobs for you within the company. In a way I’m a great example of that.

What have you learned in your time with MAKEEN Energy so far?

I’ve learned what it’s like to work in a value-based company. I don’t think that kind of structure works for everyone - but if you’re flexible, think about others, if you enjoy and know how to handle freedom and responsibility - then you’ll be happy here.

Something that I really like about this company is that if you have a wish to work with something else, you can often get it realized. It’s really a flexible place – you can get new roles if you want to. I’ve experienced that myself, but there’s also so many of my colleagues who have shifted roles.

I guess that I’ve learned how valuable skills like motivation and adaptability are. These are the skills that will make you thrive here. I’ve also learned a lot about being a good leader – that has been a new role for me, and it’s something I really prioritise doing properly.

What is the best thing about your job – and the most challenging?

We recently announced the construction of our first full-scale plastic conversion facility. On a day like this, the feeling that I’m part of realising something – of seeing the results – I have to say that I feel very proud to be the leader on that project. I know what it took to get here, and the feeling of being here now, that’s just great.

The hardest part…It has to be the number of tasks and having to lead so many specialist of different ages and backgrounds. I’m not that old, but luckily I’ve been working on the plastic conversion solution since the beginning, so everyone thinks it’s cool that I’m the leader. But I have to say that it’s a job that requires a lot.

What would you say to someone considering applying for an internship with MAKEEN Energy?

When looking for your internship, research the places that you consider carefully. It’s also hugely beneficial if you have some sort of idea of what you’d like to do. Be honest with yourself – what motivates you and where do you want to go?

When I get calls from people looking for a internship, it’s very easy for me to hear if the person I’m talking to has spent time researching us and knows what he/she can contribute with here. So that’s my advice – do your research first and apply afterwards. Then you'll love it here, it will be a great success!