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Working at an ambitous organization

Interview with Albert Labigar, Project Manager at Omexom since 2018

What do you really like about your job?

‘No two projects are the same. Every project presents its own challenges, which makes the job so interesting. What I also really like about this job is that you do it as part of a team. It’s not a one-man show; you really do have to work together. I can’t get anywhere without the project execution. Everyone has their own role and their own ideas. How can you create a team on this basis? By meeting up regularly to discuss matters, and by getting your colleagues involved. Not just with the execution, but also with the engineering. And also, of course, with the client. You have to deal with a different client team and different expectations with every new assignment. There’s never a dull moment.’

What’s so special about working for Omexom?

‘When I joined the company, I immediately felt that, besides being an ambitious organization, it was also a great organization to work for in terms of the culture, the people, the contact, and the willingness to help one another. The people, including the management, are very approachable. Why is that? There is a certain type of culture that prevails here and careful consideration is given as to whether new employees would be a good fit for the company’s culture during the selection process. At many organizations, the core values are just empty words, but here they are easily identifiable. Take entrepreneurship, for example, which is a value that is very much upheld. ’

What are the challenges?

‘We are a network organization with business units spread out throughout the Netherlands. Although people are able to collaborate, it is clear that the distance can present a challenge at times. I enjoy personal contact and it’s easy to pop in and see your immediate colleagues. You can’t do this with colleagues who are further afield. Of course, you can always call them and schedule a conference call but it’s not the same. It is up to me to find a middle way.

‘Another challenge is that a lot of time and energy is spent on the administration of projects. I had to get used to the number of documents that we have to provide to clients, such as test plans and verification/validation documents. There is no doubt that they are very useful and provide valuable insights, but it still takes up a lot of my time to make them. However, the more experienced I become in doing this, the less effort it will take.’

What does your day look like?

‘Actually, only the meetings are scheduled; the rest of the day is far from standard. If there are projects being carried out, I can often be found on location, but during the preparatory phase I am usually in the office. But again, as no two days are the same for me, the job never becomes dull.’

What gives you energy?

‘The best thing is when we have created something wonderful together and the customer is satisfied. It’s a great feeling. The final result is important, but so is the journey you take.’

What are you proud of?

‘I’m proud to be able to work at the highest level of the energy supply. I really admire the substations I drive past. It’s fantastic to be able to create something like that! And when I see how good we are at looking at things, learning, and making constant improvements, that also makes me feel proud.’

What challenges and developments do you see within your sector in future?

‘I believe that the challenge in energy transition lies in how we can adapt the grid to the future. Because there is still a lot of work to do. And there are not enough technicians, experts, and engineers. Young people often prefer to work in ICT or similar. I really think this is a major challenge.’

What is the next step?

“Ik wil graag met de organisatie bouwen aan de toekomst. Het team nog beter en professioneler maken. Ik vind het erg leuk en nuttig om daar een bijdrage aan te leveren, samen met de andere business units.”