Hugely driven, ambitious and successful are terms well-suited to SVT’s head of sports, Åsa Edlund Jönsson.
She has worked at the Swedish public broadcaster for over 20 years in a huge variety of roles, from reporter, anchor and commentator – being the first woman in the world to be a commentator on men’s ice hockey on national TV – to project manager for news and the Olympics, head of online sports, head of sports development and project manager for the Swedish and European elections for the news department.
“I seldom stay on the same spot for very long,” Edlund Jönsson says, explaining her career path at SVT. “I look for challenges and I always wanted to oversee a whole organisation or department. In my eyes my role is the best job in the sports and media business in Sweden, with a huge variety of tasks on my desk every day.”
“Learn as much as you can about sports, production and broadcasting. Be the most curious person in the room, be brave and trust your instincts. And always be kind, that is an underestimated qualification”
She adds that, “the variety” is the most exciting thing about her role as SVT’s head of sports. “We do everything from news to the biggest sports events for both linear TV and digital. One minute I deal with a complicated news story as a publisher, the next minute I negotiate big sports rights together with my head of sports rights Jan Olsson, the best wingman there is.”
Ultimately, the daily risks and challenges involved in dealing with live sports broadcasting give Edlund Jönsson the adrenalin buzz she needs to stay motivated and keep pushing forward in her career.