You have been living and working in the US, the UK and Belgium. You have both US and Belgian citizenships. Now, since 2003 you are Tetra Pak’s Vice President Global Corporate Communication, working in Lund, but living in Denmark. Are you a real globetrotter?
Am I a globetrotter? Well, I’m a little reluctant to say so. I have certainly had the benefit of being able to work in a number of different countries, cultures and environments. But a globetrotter may be a little bit of an exaggeration.
What is it that fascinates you about working abroad?
The hardest thing for me is that if you ask me what country I belong to, even though you state my nationality or my countries of citizenship, I would call myself a citizen of Europe more than anything else. My children were born in Belgium, my husband is English, and I have spent the majority of my working career in the UK or in Belgium and more recently in Scandinavia. I spend half of my time in Italy and half of my time in Sweden and the rest of the world, so I guess I don’t identify with any specific country as it were.
American-born Patricia O’Hayer is experienced in dealing with all management levels in many countries Europe-wide. Since 2007, she has been Unilever’s vice president communications and corporate responsibility. Prior to this, she worked as vice president global corporate communications for packaging specialist Tetra Pak. O’Hayer has developed and implemented issues and crisis management systems in major companies such as Tetra Pak, Baxter and Dow Corning.