I am responsible for the day-to-day running of an engineering department which is comprised of fifteen project engineers on different levels, three draftspeople and a technical writer. The role involves training, mentoring, and managing teams, as well as hiring and sometimes firing people. It also involves setting the direction for the department in line with company objectives. In other words, it is highly loaded with administrative tasks.
- What is a typical work day like for you?
To some extent I work around the clock; I need to respond to emails at all hours of the day as the company is on the verge of going global and that needs nurturing. My days in the office generally include keeping up-to-date with all of the engineering projects, lots of meetings, design reviews, document approvals, and making difficult decisions on technical dilemmas.
- Current position
I work as an engineering manager. The role requires both technical and management backgrounds as well as some business acumen.
- Where did you attend school?
I graduated from the Technical University of Budapest in 2002, having earned my MSc degree in Mechanical Engineering. I later became interested in business administration and people management hence, I enrolled at Heriot-Watt University of Edinburgh where I earned my MBA in 2011. For someone who is generally interested in technical challenges, like me, the MBA course was a melting pot of all of the pieces of the business puzzle that I already knew a bit about; through the MBA these pieces became the solid foundation I needed.
- Location of operation
The company is going global at the moment and our headquarters are in Perth, Western Australia. Providing support and problem solving internationally keeps the days whizzing past. Currently we operate heavy work class ROVs (Remotely Operated Vehicles) around Australia and in the Asia-Pacific region. We are also a manufacturing company, therefore my department works closely with the production side of the company on a daily basis.
- Name of organisation
The company is called Total Marine Technology.
- What do you enjoy most about your work at TMT?
The joy of creation; seeing designs come alive after battling difficult challenges and long days of hard work. The harder it is to design, the sweeter it feels when I get to see the ideas and sketches become a real, functioning machine.
- What factors influenced your career choice?
My personal interests helped me to map out my path. I always had an interest in creating and building and knowing how things work, which led me to study engineering so I could get paid for doing what I enjoy.
- How would you describe your leadership style?
I believe that leading by example and encouraging the heart are essential characteristics of a good leader. This is why I look at problems as challenges and am happy to be in the front-line to take part in solving them. I also believe that the best way to delegate is by building the confidence of others while letting them do things their own way, and in my opinion that is the only way to get an organisation to grow and flourish.
- What advice would you give to others pursuing a career similar to yours?
I have to say this career is not the easiest one, as you have to be able to see the big picture and sometimes even create it, while the need for attention to detail is very important as well. Once you have chosen your career path and begun that journey, your determination will drive you on. If for some reason you happen to get stuck, just take the time to look back to where you came from. The path you see will help guide you to your destination.