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8th Mar, 2019  |  General News

International Women's Day Celebrations - Sarah Kent

The final installment of our series of features on some of the amazing women we have in Kentech is our CEO, Sarah Kent.  Sarah brings a perfect balance of heart and tenacity to everything she does and her story goes some way to explain that. "As a female studying and working in a male dominated industry I have been asked on many occasions “What is it like to be a female in such a male dominated environment?”  This is a rather interesting question for me as I have nothing to compare it with, I can only share some of my experiences and what I have learned along the journey so far… At junior school I was told that I had a natural talent for maths and numbers, yet at senior school I was told that I couldn’t do physics and applied maths as these were classed as boy’s subjects and not something that girls did. In my last year in school I was told by my career guidance counsellor that an engineering degree suited my interests and grades, yet as an engineering student I was told by the Dean of Engineering that this wasn’t a place for girls and the majority of us would fail. As a young engineer I was told that I was hired because I had the technical skills, was determined and had a positive approach, yet as a sales engineer I was told that I wouldn’t be successful unless I acted like a man. When I took on the business development role at Kentech I was told that it wasn’t a job for a woman, however I was also told that I was able to build strong relationships with our clients and certain clients preferred to see me rather than my male colleagues.  When I became a mother I was told that I wouldn’t be able to do my job as CEO given the amount of travel that my role demands, and I thankfully had many members of the team kindly offer assistance to help make it a success. I have been told a lot of things, by both men and women that I can and can’t do.  I believe that most of the people who have shared these opinions and advice with me over the years have meant it in a very genuine way, sharing from their own experiences and perspectives.  However, I have learned that I, like each and every one of us, am on my own individual journey in life.  No two lives are the same, nor should they be. Have these and all of the other thousands of experiences shaped me to the person that I am today? Definitely. So, what’s it like? I love the challenge and the expanse of culture and people in the industry. I love working with people and the nomadic nature of the work, but yet it feels like a community. I love the fact that I get to be part of something that aims to positively impact thousands of lives. Yes, there are challenges, good days and bad days, the travel and time away from home can be hard. So, for me, it is as simple as this.  I do what I do because I am me, a woman, a wife, a sister, a CEO, an aunt, a mother, a daughter, a colleague, a friend and a human being that is striving to grow, learn and use all her skills to be fulfilled, make a difference and enjoy her life. I think that there is so much focus in the world today on all the things we can and can’t do in life and the differences between people when really we should all be embracing these wonderful distinctions and wide-ranging experiences so as to gain wider perspectives, ideas and solutions. I am looking forward to us all celebrating International Men’s day on the 19th of November!"

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TAGS: ##internationalwomensday  ##inspirationalwomen  ##balanceforbetter  

7th Mar, 2019  |  General News

International Women's Day Celebrations - Namilya Yergalieva

My name is Namilya from Kazakhstan and I have a 10 year old son who is my world.  I work in the field of HSE for Kentech as their IIF Coordinator on the Tengiz plant.  The heart of IIF is about caring for each other, and this is why I feel like this role suits my personality down to ground.  I care about people and I want my teammates to be safe, healthy and happy.  I love that I get to do a job everyday that is all about bringing out the best in people, celebrating their achievements and driving positive change in the way we all think about how we work on a daily basis. I do work in a male dominated environment and I won’t lie, at times it did feel pretty strange at first.  But in no other aspect of my life have I ever seen gender imbalances, so I quickly got past that flash of internal dialogue in my head and got on with the task of integrating myself in to the team, just like you would any other.  I can honestly say I have been welcomed with open arms into this wonderful Kentech family, my second family as I call them.  I have received nothing but support and respect from my peers and managers, who have guided me and mentored me to succeed in my work and for that I am truly grateful.  They never saw any issue with the fact that I am a woman and why should they? If anything, my nurturing nature makes me better at my job. I feel so proud that I am playing my part in delivering our ‘We Are Family’ culture so that all my colleagues return home safely and am confident that in return my colleagues keep me safe so I can return home to my son.

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TAGS: ##internationalwomensday  ##inspirationalwomen  ##balanceforbetter  

6th Mar, 2019  |  General News

International Women's Day Celebrations - Yulia Ratnikova

Yulia Ratnikova has recently joined our Sakhalin team as Metrology Engineer and we’re very pleased to have her story included in our series for International Women’s Day today. "I have been working as a Metrology Engineer for over 12 years now. As a kid, like most people, I didn’t really know what I wanted to be when I grew up but I had a cousin who was fond of technology. I liked to help him and I guess this was how I discovered how much I liked working with equipment and appliances. I’ve had a varied career working in locations across Russia and have always found my work interesting and versatile. I think that’s what I like the most about it. I’ve never felt treated any differently because I am a woman, and I’ve worked in some pretty extreme environments. I was once posted on a project in Murmansk, located in extreme northern Russia, beyond the Arctic Circle. What was particularly unusual is that the whole team lived on a ship. I had my own cabin but there was a massive sense of team camaraderie, especially at mealtimes when we all came together to eat in the ship’s galley. I even experienced a polar day during my trip where the sun did not set at all and it was light day and night. The rest of the team was all male but it was a solid team. We all helped each other through any difficulties in order to execute our work within a pretty challenging timescale. I hope I can continue to achieve professional growth and self-improvement and this year I also plan to learn new languages. In the run-up to International Women’s Day on 8th March, I want to wish all women spiritual warmth and love and hope that they also get to experience fulfilling work with supportive colleagues, male or female."

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TAGS: ##internationalwomensday  ##inspirationalwomen  ##balanceforbetter  

5th Mar, 2019  |  General News

International Women's Day Celebrations - Laura Pryce

The second instalment of our International Women's Day features comes from Laura Pryce, HSE Manager for STS based out of our Canada operations. "When I was a child, I loved the hurdles in track and field. I loved it because I was really good at it. I don’t just mean, like, for a girl. I was the best in the class , the best in my grade! It was a really defining and curious thing to realize that I could be better at something in gym class than the boys. I tucked that feeling away and used it whenever I felt challenged in my ambition. I could do it – with enough drive and by rejecting the negative, I could. By and large, my career experience has been overwhelmingly positive; I’ve felt recognized, heard, seen and appreciated. I’ve had extraordinary mentors, both male and female, who stop at nothing to support me and push me to excel in my field. I feel truly blessed to find myself within the Kentech organization, a company that celebrates such diversity of spirit, ambition and intellect that they coined a phrase for it: K2. That is not to say that my path has been without challenges. I have absolutely experienced my gender being used, both unconsciously and consciously, as a justification to marginalise me. From quasi-offensive endearments meant to belittle my contributions to outright harassment meant to control me – I’ve run the gamut on inappropriately gendered politics. And to be perfectly honest, when it happens, it sucks. It’s disappointing and frustrating and just so trite. But those moments don’t say anything about me, or my journey. They don’t reflect my passion for what I do, my capability or who I am. For me, International Women’s Day is a day that I reflect on the powerful, inspiring, amazing women in my life who I have looked up to. The women who showed me that your worth is not defined by your gender or your sexuality or your race - it is defined by your integrity, resilience and capacity for connection and growth. I think about the woman I want to model for the two little girls watching me: someone brave and kind; someone who holds space for other women, empowering them to find strength. I am excited for a future for them. We have come so far in what we’ve accomplished, the adversities we’ve faced, the challenges to which we’ve risen. As a woman, I think that is the best legacy to leave in the workplace: a space where women can thrive, not as a girl, but as their vocation. A chance to not just be the best girl at hurdles, but to be the best."

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TAGS: ##internationalwomensday  ##inspirationalwomen  ##balanceforbetter  

4th Mar, 2019  |  General News

International Women's Day Celebrations - Sadiya Siddique

In the lead up to International Women’s Day on March 8th, we’re taking time out to recognise and celebrate just some of the inspiring women we have doing amazing things here at Kentech. Today's installment comes from Sadiya Siddique who shares some of her experience as an Electrical Engineer in our Industry.  "If you really like what you do, then all you really care about is performing at your best. I’ve never really seen gender as an issue. It doesn’t really matter whether it’s a guy you’re competing against or a girl, for me the competition was only with myself. I was always driven to be the best I could be. I wanted to get the A. Moving into working life, there were times, especially when I was involved in more hands on, site work, that I was very aware that I was the only female in the room. Although it felt quite intimidating at first, once I realised that it was just because I was the only female, I just shook it off and got on with the job. After a while, it felt empowering to know that I was doing something different and maybe shifting people’s mindsets on what was possible for women. Coming to Kentech felt like entering a new world. I’ve been embraced by this family, everybody was so welcoming from the start and my team members have been great teachers and mentors to me. Nothing has been too much trouble for them and I really respect and admire them for that. My hope for the future would just be to have a rich and fulfilling life with a good balance between personal and professional life. I want to continue to grow and become an engineering leader and then I hope to have a nice family to return home to at the end of each day."

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TAGS: ##inspirationalwomen  ##internationalwomensday  ##balanceforbetter