Meet the talent: Maryam Siddiqah-Oinonen

We sat down with Maryam Siddiqah-Oinonen.

Meet the talent: Maryam Siddiqah-Oinonen

What’s your name and where you're from?

My name is Maryam Siddiqah-Oinonen, and I'm originally from Jakarta, Indonesia. I came to Finland in 2011 to study for my Masters in Oulu, majoring in education and globalization. My (then) Finnish boyfriend told me about Finland and the opportunity to study for a master's degree. I had been working for 7-8 years and decided to continue my studies, so I applied to Oulu, Vaasa, and Lappi universities and got accepted to all three. I ultimately chose Oulu.

What was your first impression of Finland?

I didn't know much about Finland before coming here, but my first reaction was that it was so far! My friends from back home were worried if I would be able to survive without chilies since I love a good spicy kick in my food.

How has your cultural background influenced your experience in Finland?

I think my friendliness and openness are traits that I've brought with me from my Indonesian background. When I started working at KIRAHub, I noticed that Finnish people who are working at the Urban3 space are not typical Finns - they are more open and willing to talk about their lives. I also appreciate good food, and as a foodie, I enjoy exploring new flavors and dishes.

How has your internship experience been so far at KIRAHub, and could you tell us about your responsibilities?

My internship experience has been quite rewarding. I am part of a team consisting of three individuals, and we collaborate closely. Before landing the job, I faced numerous rejections. However, I persevered, and eventually, I had an interview with Ale from Herizon. At that point, I had almost given up, but surprisingly, I felt more relaxed during the interview. I consider myself very fortunate to have been selected for the position.

One of the most exciting aspects of my internship at KIRAHub has been the opportunity to learn about real estate, the construction industry, and its processes. I have been exposed to new tools and applications like Hubspot and Slack. Additionally, I have been actively learning professional terms in Finnish, such as "HANKE," which has allowed me to develop my language skills. While I have acquired theoretical knowledge through Finnish language courses, working at KIRAHub has exposed me to more professional everyday life vocabulary.

It's important to acknowledge that I sometimes experience imposter syndrome, given that this is a new industry and the daily routine differs from my previous experiences. But overall I am confident in my capabilities. Although my Finnish language proficiency is not yet at an advanced level, it does not hinder my ability to perform well at my job.‍

How has your experience been with Herizon?

I didn't have a specific background in marketing, so growth hacking was a new topic for me. I hadn't done it before, but I knew I had to upgrade my skills, especially after Covid hit. So, I joined the Digital Marketing Program from the Shortcut. Although the program was not too long, I learned a lot from it.

In my internship, I mostly tracked the number of buyers for the World Digital Built Environment event, creating content for KIRAHub's social media channels during the event. Currently, I am mostly taking care of the Urban3 co-working space (community space hosted by KIRAHub for the built environment), tracking the data, such as viewers on Youtube, and strategizing how to get more viewers on our live streams. I've learned a lot, and I feel like this is what I need for my future in digital marketing and data.

What message would you like to share with other members of the Herizon community?

I would encourage everyone to keep applying, keep trying, and maintain hope that there is a company out there with a good and open-minded leader who will recognize your skills and accept you as a valuable worker.

Recently, I had a conversation with a few people, and we discussed how many companies fail to see the positive aspects of hiring foreigners. While learning Finnish may take a bit longer, we bring unique skills and perspectives to the table. It's a process that requires patience and persistence. Coming from a different culture, we have the ability to offer a fresh perspective and contribute to the diversity of ideas within a team.

So, to my fellow Herizon community members, let's continue to bring our unique skills and perspectives to the table and challenge conventional norms. Together, we can make a positive impact and contribute to the growth and success of companies in Finland.

When faced with challenges, what strategies do you employ to stay motivated and maintain a positive mindset?

One of my biggest motivations is my children. I have a strong desire to secure a job and be able to support them not only mentally but also financially. Hobbies can be quite expensive in Finland, and I want to ensure that I can provide for them.

Moreover, I find great joy in meeting new people, continuously improving my skills, and expanding my professional network. Engaging with others and learning from their experiences provides me with inspiration and fuels my motivation.

Lastly, I practice affirmations to maintain a positive mindset. Before going to sleep, I remind myself of positive statements like "I am smart, I am resilient, I can do anything." This helps to reinforce my self-belief and encourages me to approach challenges with confidence.

My motivation stems from the desire to support my children, the fulfillment I find in personal growth and networking, and the power of positive affirmations. These factors help me stay focused, resilient, and positive when faced with challenges.‍

Looking ahead, what are your plans for the future?

I hope to continue working in this industry and further expand my expertise. My boss has actually encouraged me to learn about AI in the built environment, so I'm currently focusing on gaining knowledge in that area. Continuous learning is a priority for me, as it allows me to stay up-to-date with industry trends and advancements.

Furthermore, I am passionate about supporting my friends who are currently searching for employment. I believe in the power of networking and helping others, so I'm always willing to lend a helping hand and provide guidance whenever possible.

Lastly, I proudly advocate for Herizon and its mission. I frequently mention Herizon to others as a valuable resource and community. Being part of Herizon has been a positive experience for me, and I want to share that with others who may benefit from it.