Making Your Time Matter with Sandra

Tags: , , , , Published On: 16.02.2022

Name: Sandra Schwinnen
Title: Executive Assistant

How long have you been with CrossLend? What do you like about working here?

I first joined CrossLend in 2019 via an agency, working as an executive assistant and doing some bookkeeping. I found it interesting – for one, I learnt that CrossLend has an office in Luxembourg, where I am from, so there was a connection for me. They were happy with my work so I came on as an employee that year. It was a lot of fun, it was a lot of work – 2019 was an incredibly busy year, with a lot of activities and work. In 2020 obviously everything changed. But I was really grateful for how CrossLend treated employees during this situation, they were very helpful, such as offering bikes to travel to the office, delivering office furniture to the employees’ homes, and much more. However, that year there was an opening at the Luxembourgish Embassy, which for me seemed like the opportunity of a lifetime and I took the job there. This year I rejoined the team, starting on 1 January.

What made you decide to work at CrossLend?

I kept in touch with the CrossLend team throughout the year I was away and the team would often joke about me rejoining the company. Then it turned serious when I told them I would actually be interested in coming back. Why? I really enjoy the working culture at CrossLend, what we do, how we do it, and the tools we use. It’s really impressive to witness and be a part of. A lot of this I realised after I left the company, and that’s why rejoining made sense for me. I’m so glad that I’ve been given this opportunity.

CrossLend is no longer a startup, but it still has a young mentality in the sense that we can make a difference. In other jobs, I found that there were certain structures and ways of working, but these often had failings. There were issues, but it was very hard to improve things or have an influence. The good thing at Crosslend is that if something isn’t working, you are actually able to change it – if you can provide reasons or ways to improve something, you can make that happen. You can start using tools which make your work more effective and so forth. In the past, I had made suggestions about how certain processes could be improved, and I was encouraged to implement such changes. I could see in the short time that I was at CrossLend the first time round that I could really have an impact on the work that I was doing – for the benefit of everyone at the company, not only just to facilitate my own work.

What are you mainly working on at CrossLend? What are some skills that have benefited you?

I am back in the same position as an executive assistant and doing bookkeeping. Being multilingual is a big help. Overall, I’m very good with organisation and being proactive. I care a lot about helping improve the workflow between departments and helping to enhance the processes that can make work better for everyone.

Where do you live? Outside of work, what’s a fun way you like to spend your free time?

I moved to Berlin six years ago because I wanted to live here. I decided to come and live in this city, because it feels like everything is possible here in Berlin. It’s not a beautiful city, but you have so many possibilities. I like the atmosphere, and also how open minded people are. I’ve met a lot of nice people, and what I like is that the city offers a huge variety of things to do in your spare time. I love going to concerts – small concerts in bars – and to the theatre. Hopefully soon that will be possible again.

What are some podcasts or books you would recommend?

I love the books of Sebastian Fitzek, a German crime thriller writer.

CrossLend has six company values (innovation, sustainability, fun, open dialogue, respect & fairness, and teamwork) – which of these do you most identify with, and why?

Teamwork is the value I identify with most. It’s a great feeling to know that you are not alone in trying to achieve something, no matter what it is. The feeling of teamwork I have experienced at CrossLend has been unique in my professional career. I think it’s really important when you go to an office and sit there for most of your day to feel good about what you’re doing and who you’re doing it with. I am very proud to work for a company where you see in general that this is the future for finance and digitisation – we are working in this field and helping move the market in the right direction, together!

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