Every Thursday, the girls at Optime Subsea meet for a training session after work. Project Manager and Fitness Instructor Stine Therese Timland is the initiator of the vigorous and social gathering point.

“There is a very unique culture at Optime Subsea, in a positive way, but there are not that many girls in our company. Therefore, it is terrific that we girls can meet and strengthen our great environment, and at the same time be active together,” says Timland.

An active life is a lifestyle

In addition to the job at Optime Subsea, Stine Therese spends a lot of time on training and family. With a five-year-old in the house, a baby on its way and an instructor job at the local fitness centre Spenst, her days are busy and active. The fact that Stine Therese is structured, tidy and good at keeping track is thus useful both at work and at home.

Stine Therese Timland

“Training and activity is not really about structure for me. An active life is a lifestyle that I enjoy.”

Stine Therese Timland

“At the same time, exercise and activity help to improve health, both physically and mentally. It is an advantage for the employer that employees are active because training causes less ailments and lower sick leave,” says the engaged Optime employee.

The latter is one of the reasons why the fitness group Optime Girls is of great value to Optime. The resourceful Project Manager gets to use her training skills for the benefit of her employer.

Stine Therese Timland og Optime Girls

A sporty working environment

“We do various activities in Optime Girls. Sometimes we do strength training at a gym we have here, other times we go hiking. We have also been on several summits and ski trips,” explains Stine Therese.

The active girl from Notodden is happy to work in a place where employees are encouraged to stay active, and that they have the opportunity to make it something social. She is one of several taking initiative for vigorous social activities in the company.

“Both ski trips and summits have been arranged for all Optime employees on several occasions, and we have had an altitude competition at Strava. If it hadn’t been for the corona we would have been a good bunch at the Birken race last spring and the Birkebeiner race now in March,” she says.

See Optime Girls in the video below.

A business with clear ambitions

Stine Therese started as a purchaser at Optime Subsea in December 2018.

“I submitted an interest application to Optime, because it seemed that they had a very good working environment. It also seemed like a business with clear ambitions, which dared to think outside the box. Based on their needs at the time and my experience, I was offered the position of purchaser,” explains Stine Therese.

As a newly hired purchaser, Stine Therese became an important piece in the launch of SCILS. Read how the work of SCILS helped create the unique corporate culture here.

Stine Therese Timland at Optime Subsea

When asked what the best thing about her job is Stine Therese replies that it is difficult to say anything other than the working environment.

“There is a very special culture here. We may disagree on procedures, and there is absolutely room for that here. Yet the distance between the departments is short, and we all have great respect for each other. We all want Optime to succeed and we are one team.”

Stine Therese Timland

New challenges as a Project Manager

As employee number 18 in the expanding company Optime, the 35-year-old was not allowed to remain among the “new” for very long. In little more than two years, the company has grown from 18 to over 50 employees.

Recently, Stine Therese started a new position as Project Manager. In this position, she will lead a project from order to delivery, which involves a lot of administration and coordination.

“It is exciting to get to try a completely different type of position than the one I had before. I am very happy to get this opportunity,” Timland says.

She appreciates the opportunity for, and the encouragement to, personal and professional development and new challenges.

“It provides an exciting and varied workday where you can grow. I have no trouble seeing myself working at Optime 10 years from now,” says Stine Therese.

Optime Subsea aims to “simplify subsea”. Read how here.

When Thor Øystein Finborud Tovsrud heard about Optime Subsea for the first time, he instantly knew that he wanted to be a part of the adventure.

– We were living and working in Trondheim when my wife found employment as a doctor in Notodden. This gave us the opportunity to move back to the farm where I grew up, Thor Øystein explains.

The farm in question had been in the family for more than one hundred years, and is situated only few minutes away from Optime Subsea’s headquarter in Notodden.

Going home to the family farm

Moving back to Notodden and the family farm meant that Thor Øystein would have to leave his job in Interwell in Trondheim.

– After quitting my safe job with Interwell I found myself unemployed. Optime Subsea had only recently started as a company, but I was in contact with the CEO, Jan-Fredrik Carlsen, about a position there. However, Optime’s economic situation at the time made it impossible for them to employ anyone, Thor Øystein recalls.

Thor Øystein Finborud Tovsrud moved back to the idyllic family farm in Notodden.

Instead, Optime and Thor Øystein found a solution through NAV (the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration). The result was that Thor Øystein started to work at Optime without a salary, but with economic support from NAV, for a set period of time in a scheme known as work training.

Just before the 2016 merger between Optime and Telemark Technologies, Thor Øystein was formally employed as a system engineer at Optime and began working on SCILS.

Find out more about SCILS here.

As Optime has grown, so have the responsibilities of Thor Øystein Finborud Tovsrud. The engineer is now Service Manager for Optime and works in close collaboration with Optime Subsea’s customers in the offshore segment.

A natural born problem solver

Thor Øystein has always had an interest in mechanical and technical solutions. At the age of sixteen he acquired his first moped and started fixing on it. Since then it has escalated. Today Thor Øystein has his own 150 square meters workshop at the farm. Here he builds a veteran car and maintains the family cars, an ATV and a tractor.

– I like problem solving, either it is technical or in other areas, both at work and at home, he says.

At their idyllic and well-maintained farm in Heddal, lives Thor Øystein along with his wife and two young daughters.

– I spend a lot of time with my daughters, who are 3 and 4 years old, but I have also made sure to retain my hobbies. Be it fixing cars or going hunting or fishing, I use these activities to reset and re-energise, the busy family father explains.

At the farm he has 4 buildings and 1100 square meters to take care of, and describes it as both fun and demanding.

– A lot of my spare time goes towards maintaining the farm. It is quite a contrast to when we lived in a small apartment in Trondheim. But we really like it here and we could not imagine moving somewhere else with our small family.

Why the nickname Toffen?

Early in his Optime career Thor Øystein was given the nickname “Toffen”.

– One of the founders of Optime Subsea also holds the name Tor-Øystein, so the name was already taken when I started working here. I believe Trond, Jan-Fredrik and Thor Arne, the three other founders, were the ones who came up with “Toffen”. Ever since then it has been my nickname at work, Toffen says with a smile.

The name was occupied: Toffen together with Tor-Øystein Carlsen, CTO of Optime (left) and Kristen Stenstad (right).

Engaging leadership at Optime Subsea

At Optime Subsea Thor Øystein is part of a working environment which he describes as very good.

– We have a fantastic leader in Jan-Fredrik Carlsen, who is amazingly enthusiastic and engaging. He really represents the culture here and is an important part of creating an environment where we encourage each other, Thor Øystein says.

For Thor Øystein, the work environment is the number one reason why he likes working at Optime Subsea.

– I think all the employees here will agree that the working environment in our company is very motivating. In addition, of course, the jobs at Optime Subsea are meaningful, innovative and interesting, the skilled engineer explains.