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Expert of the Week: Anna Pakkala – “Find partners, don’t be afraid of the new, and start experimenting”

Anna Pakkala

Anna Pakkala says that she gets excited when working at reducing environmental footprints through innovative business solutions.

“In my daily work I wear two hats. As Co-Founder at Pure Growth Innovations, I help businesses experiment with sustainability, with a focus on energy transitions, circular economy and innovation management. As Head of Sustainability at Slush, I put together the puzzle that is sustainability in strategy and operations while solving daily real-life challenges associated with implementing sustainability.”

Anna has advanced her understanding of sustainability in her studies in Creative Sustainability at Aalto University School of Business, a multi-disciplinary program centered around design and systems thinking approaches.

She says that climate change and environmental sustainability are the biggest challenges we have ever faced.

“I want to mobilize everyone and anyone to work towards solving these problems, because working towards addressing these issues should no longer be optional for any business.”

In addition to building bridges and creating networks and dialogue to solve these issues, she is also personally motivated by the idea of being even a small part of creating the sustainable future.

Anna is accustomed to navigating new settings, having spent most of her life skipping between continents and cultures, including living in Finland, Canada and the US.

Anna is at her best in multi-disciplinary project management and development, business modelling and customer experience development, and energy system assessments.

“I think two things are crucial. One is the ability to work with a diverse group of people and organizations, and to actively seek out those connections. The other is to push yourself and others to ideate far beyond what you think is possible.

She says that going beyond the status quo is unbelievably difficult but having the courage to experiment with even the craziest ideas and build on them is not necessarily a waste of time, but can lead to very interesting paths.

“Find partners, don’t be afraid of the new, and start experimenting.”

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