When I joined Shell in November 2015, my career was already fairly developed – I came in with 14 years’ experience in project management roles and was looking for somewhere I could take my responsibilities to the next level.
I started off working as a Program Manager on a project for a single market. Two and a half years later, Shell has given me so much room to progress that I’m now managing IT project delivery across 3 markets: Malaysia, Hong Kong and Pakistan. In fact, I’ve had a different role for every year since I joined, and it just goes to show that performance and growth do not go unnoticed at Shell.
Here, I learned that if you show willingness to grow, as well as demonstrating excellence in your project delivery, people will recognise it and support you in your goals so you can succeed in your career.
I’ve found the leadership at Shell to be incredibly motivating. They hold your hand when it’s necessary, but also empower you to go ahead and implement your own decisions.
Leaders here have showed me that there’s a delicate balance to strike between letting people define their own path and making sure they have a clear and continuous route into how we do business. This the most important thing I learned from my leadership and has defined my own leadership strategy going forward.
As a result, I like to give freedom to my people, so that they can approach challenges their own way and have the opportunity to prove themselves. My line managers always allowed me to try new things and it helped me develop incredibly quickly as I was able to own both the work that worked and the work that didn’t. I want to take that approach and apply it to my own working methods so I can get the best from my people.
So, I tend to stand back and evaluate the capacity of my team members, seeing how they handle opportunities and letting them run the show on their own. If a problem arises however, I will step up and get things back on track. No matter what, I am the face of the team, and I won’t hesitate to represent them when communicating with the rest of the business – I’ll be there for the challenges, as well as the successes.
Success comes in many forms
I believe that success is more than just large project delivery. It’s also the small things that people do differently on a daily basis. Those little details that enable the business and positively impact the team.
For example, the success of one of my projects hinged on the ‘can-do’ attitude of my team members. We were starting deployment in a new market, which involved going to a site to make sure the IT infrastructure was up and running. This particular colleague demonstrated such a positive attitude, going above and beyond to deliver the project, that his keenness and willingness made a shining impression on the clients on the ground.
I think it’s important to share these kinds of successes with a broader audience, so that others are encouraged to do the same. At Shell, we have recognition programmes to thank employees and, in this case, I most certainly put forward my recommendation for recognizing the good job done by individuals and the team as a whole.
Looking out for your well-being
Shell is a fantastic organization for rewarding and supporting its employees. Shell genuinely values employees’ safety and drives it by bringing a paradigm shift in the way employees incorporate safe behaviour in day to day activities. The organization and my leadership also support me incredibly well when times are tough, enabling me to rebalance my work so that I can take care of my family.
If you’re interested in broadening your skill base and bolstering your leadership skills, Shell is an excellent place for that. I thought I had lots of experience interfacing with vendors in my previous role, but at Shell it was on a much larger scale than I expected. I have ownership over a wider portfolio of applications and am given the power to drive real changes here. So, if you’re someone who wants to drive real value for the business and see that impact on the organization’s bottom line, look no further.
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