Susanna Lindholm (Business Development & Marketing at gatc LP)
Susanna Lindholm has arrived from Finland to Atlanta to support SACC’s member company gatc LP in Business Development and Marketing. She answered some interview questions to introduce herself, her quite versatile international background, and SACC’s J1 visa program:
Welcome to Atlanta, Susanna! Can you tell something about yourself?
Kiitos! I’m Susku from Finland and arrived in Atlanta in mid-March. I have a master’s degree in Business Management and I’m interested in international business. My hobbies are gym, ballroom dances, travelling and different cultures. I’m turning 30 in June and hope that the Corona situation would calm down a bit by then!
Do you have previous work experience?
Yes, 7 years. I have worked in the industries of accounting and HR services, technology, forest industry, construction, real estate, international relations, politics and public sector. I came to Atlanta with a J1-trainee visa, but I’m older and more experienced than a typical recent graduate.
What is your education?
I have four university degrees. In 2012, I graduated as a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Financial Management and worked some years at the largest accounting chain in Finland. After getting to know the job very well, I was eager to study a higher degree and got accepted in the Jyväskylä University School of Business and Economics. I still worked part-time in HR and payroll accounting, but the university opened a bunch of new opportunities. I put my focus on Management and Leadership, International Business, and Marketing. I also completed a Teacher’s degree in Adult Education. In 2019, I graduated as a Master of Science in Business Management.
Did you have international experiences before coming to the U.S.?
I have lived in 7 countries: Finland, Germany, the USA, Belgium, South Korea, China, and India. Why? Because of several student exchange semesters, internships abroad, summer jobs and work. I completed my first Erasmus student exchange in Lüneburg, Germany. That was the best experience I had so far, so I wanted to do more. I completed my second international exchange in Busan, South Korea, and the third one in Münster, Germany. That time I also got interested in International Relations and then moved to India to complete a traineeship at the Embassy of Finland in New Delhi. After India, I moved to Manhattan and worked as a Business Development trainee at Amcham (American Chamber of Commerce). We organized many business events in New York. Then I moved to China to work at the Chinese real estate and furniture company Sunon. After China, I moved to Helsinki and started a job as a B2B Sales Coordinator at the construction company SRV. Our team was responsible for marketing and selling office spaces, especially the new skyscrapers in Helsinki. Then last year, I got accepted in the European Parliament’s Communications department and moved to Brussels, Belgium. And from Brussels I arrived in Atlanta and started at gatc LP.
What kind of a company is gatc LP?
Gatc LP is a German-owned company helping foreign companies to enter and expand into the U.S. market. It is like international business consulting, but even more: we establish and operate U.S. subsidiaries of international companies. That means, we offer all necessary services needed to start or to expand operations in the U.S. We run the entire back-office for them, including accounting, administration, HR, marketing, management support, logistics, order processing, and warehousing. We provide a complete infrastructure including office and warehouse space. Usually a client focuses on sales, business development and technical support, while we handle the rest. Our staff acts as their staff, providing a professional organizational structure from day one. Some clients have the whole package and some only some parts. Every client is unique, and the services can be tailored based on the client needs.
What kind of goals do you have for your time in Atlanta?
Learning more about international business. Gatc LP is a great company for that. My second goal is learning languages. Until now, I have tried to learn 10 languages: (Finnish), English, Swedish, German, Russian, French, Spanish, South Korean, Chinese, and a little bit of Hindi. That’s natural after living in 7 countries. My goal here in the U.S. is obviously improving my English, but also Swedish and German. Gatc LP has many German clients and we offer German-speaking customer service. For Swedish language improvement, I lay my eyes on SACC! I would be happy to make new Swedish friends here. I am already waiting for the future events!
What kind of future plans do you have?
My contract at gatc LP is for one year. After that, I’m open for suggestions! Something international for sure. International business is my passion. I would see two possible options: working at an international entreprise or helping international companies through a consulting firm.
Would you recommend SACC’s J1 visa program for companies?
Absolutely! That is the hook to get young, talented, and internationally oriented workforce to your organization. The costs are low but the fresh and innovative ideas are precious input. Recent graduates have up-to-date academic knowledge and the latest technological know-how. With the J1 program, you can attract great, intercultural, young talents.
Anything else you would like to share?
Yes, I have been quite annoyed because of this Corona crisis! I arrived in mid-March, actually on the last day when it was still possible before the ban. That means, I did not have a chance to meet many people in Atlanta yet. Under the current circumstances, I would be happy to make new connections virtually! Feel free to add me on social media channels:
And if you know any company that would be interested in entering or expanding American market and might need help or subsidiary establishing, just ask me: firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m really looking forward to meeting everyone and joining SACC events when they start to run again at some point! I wish you all sunny spring days and hope to see you soon!