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WOMEN IN PACKAGING

7 March 2016

WOMEN IN PACKAGING

At Premier Tech Chronos (PTC), the spirit of innovation is constantly evolving, nurtured by a principle of recognizing the talents and abilities within the organization. PTC would like to shine the spotlight on team members who are breaking boundaries and demonstrating both an ability to adapt and a passion for their everyday work.





HER CAREER PATH

My taste for business developed at a very young age. My parents were hotel owners and we quickly learned several important aspects of doing business. Given this legacy, it was only natural that I would study Business Administration at university. I worked five years at an accounting firm and, in 1992, obtained my CPA designation. In 1995, the firm tasked me with the audit of Premier Tech. After meeting several people in the company, I was invited to join the PT team. I began at the group’s corporate office and then joined the environmental technologies team, where I worked for seven years. Subsequently, I was named to my current position with Premier Tech Chronos.


WHAT SHE CONSIDERS ESSENTIAL IN HER POSITION

My years as an Auditor taught me thoroughness and the principles that are essential to keep in mind as the head of administration and finance in an organization. You need to be versatile, curious and enjoy contact with people. It’s much easier to improve difficult situations when you are close to people and take a genuine interest in their problems. Among the work values that I cherish the most are the importance of handling every request as if it came from a customer and meeting the needs of every person to the fullest extent possible.


THE CHALLENGES SHE FACES DAILY

As the person responsible for Finance and Administration worldwide, some of my greatest challenges are related to the distances that separate us. Requests involving different subjects, languages and contexts come from virtually every corner of the world. The work involves a lot of travel and the flexibility to deal with the urgent needs of a growing company. I also need to ensure that our tools meet the users’ needs yet are uniform, so that we can compare our various sites and share information. There’s also a constant need to look ahead and project toward the future, to question oneself and to look at things with an open mind. On a human level, I have to adapt quickly to the culture of the various countries I visit in order to quickly eliminate cultural barriers. After all, we are one and the same team.


THE WORK DYNAMIC IN A PREDOMINANTLY MALE ENVIRONMENT

I spent my childhood surrounded by boys. I never felt different. I liked their brash and daredevil ways. If I wanted to be one of them, I had to do as they did and overcome my fears. This is the type of environment that I know best. I appreciate the direct and go-getter attitude of my male colleagues. I like to take action. I don’t put any barriers in my way. 


HER GREATEST SOURCE OF PROFESSIONAL PRIDE

I’m convinced that what I’m doing today will be good in the mid-to-long term. Over the past 20 years, we have gone through various growth phases and the tools we use have evolved with time. I place a lot of importance in my colleagues who, for the most part, have been there since the beginning. We share the same passion and vision. I’m proud of what the Premier Tech Chronos’ team has accomplished and happy to be part of the adventure we share every day.




 

HER CAREER PATH

I completed my bachelor’s degree in Human Sciences with a major in English and then studied for an M.A. in English. Following graduation, I joined the Chronos Richardson team in Thailand and worked there for several years. Since 2010, I’ve been part of the wider PTC family, progressing from the position of Sales Assistant to Sales Director.


WHAT SHE CONSIDERS ESSENTIAL IN HER POSITION

Respect and honesty are values that I hold dear and apply in my daily work. As a manager, I feel that it’s essential to take responsibility for my environment, for the people around me, for the tasks to be done and for the steps to follow to achieve them.


THE CHALLENGES SHE FACES DAILY

All our clients have different needs and this requires that we understand their specific situations. The challenge is to know how to provide them with the solution that perfectly fits those needs. Part of what I do every day at PTC is to find the right solution, for the right client, at the right time and in the right way.


THE WORK DYNAMIC IN A PREDOMINANTLY MALE ENVIRONMENT

I think it’s important to create a healthy work environment in spite of differences in character and mindset. You have to make the effort to understand one another, to interact and to compromise, because, in the end, we are all working toward the same goal.


HER GREATEST SOURCE OF PROFESSIONAL PRIDE

Overall, I’m very proud of where I’ve come professionally, but my greatest accomplishment is joining the PTC team in Thailand and meeting Julian Jones, who was a wonderful manager. Working with him and his team not only forces me to push my limits every day, but it was also the most rewarding experience that I have ever had.






HER CAREER PATH

I’ve always loved pure and applied sciences, so the idea of studying engineering, especially mechanical engineering, came naturally to me. I began working as a Planner with a semi-trailer manufacturer before joining PTC in quality management at our two manufacturing plants in Rivière-du-Loup. Following Premier Tech’s acquisition of Chronos Richardson, I had an opportunity to work in Germany for a year with the local team. When I returned to head office, I was eager to take on new challenges within PTC, which led me to project management.


WHAT SHE CONSIDERS ESSENTIAL IN HER POSITION

In addition to being versatile and knowing how to manage priorities while balancing multiple projects at the same time, you need to ensure that the client’s interests are front and center in all your decisions and actions.


THE CHALLENGES SHE FACES DAILY

Standardizing processes in a context in which we offer our clients personalized solutions is a challenge. This is especially true given that our projects are being shared more and more among our teams around the world.


THE WORK DYNAMIC IN A PREDOMINANTLY MALE ENVIRONMENT

I’ve almost always worked in a predominantly male environment, so it’s difficult for me to make any comparisons. The desire to take on collective challenges is a major aspect of working at PTC. These challenges are being met by interdisciplinary teams.


HER GREATEST SOURCE OF PROFESSIONAL PRIDE

In my 15 years with PTC, I’ve seen the company evolve and grow to the point of becoming a world leader in industrial packaging. I’m proud to have contributed to its development and to continue to do so today.







HER CAREER PATH

I began my career more than eight years ago after completing my technical diploma. When I started at PTC, I found the work challenging. And even now, there are challenges every day in my job. PTC offers an impressive variety of equipment developed to meet the specific needs of each client, which means that I never stop learning. It is this type of versatility that I like and that makes the company special in my eyes.


WHAT SHE CONSIDERS ESSENTIAL IN HER POSITION

You have to love travelling. On every trip, I have to adapt to the country and obviously the machines on which I have to work completely autonomously. Once I’ve adapted, it’s a lot easier to solve the client’s problems quickly and to manage crises. One of the most important characteristics is the difference between those who work hard on something that means little to them and those who work hard on something that they are passionate about. Work is a passion for me.


THE CHALLENGES SHE FACES DAILY

In a world in which technical service is now done directly on-site, we often have only one chance to prove ourselves. This is true every time we solve a problem for a new client. My first challenge was landing this job, which is not usually a very popular choice for women. I learn to live every day with completely different personalities. Each day brings challenges and I enjoy proving that I can do more physical work while managing a variety of situations, even if that means asking for help from others.


THE WORK DYNAMIC IN A PREDOMINANTLY MALE ENVIRONMENT

I knew when I chose this field that it was predominantly male. I think things have changed over time. Today, women have integrated into most industries. When I began my career, it was rare to see a woman work on-site. I remember very well that I was the only woman in the packaging industry for a long time. Once I travelled to offices, I discovered other women doing outstanding work, in engineering, for example.


HER GREATEST SOURCE OF PROFESSIONAL PRIDE

My first week at PTC was a challenge in itself. I signed my work contract on Monday and on Wednesday my manager asked me, “So, Ursula, you know all about Siemens Step7, right?” On Friday, I found myself in Byhalia, in charge of a group of French engineers whom PTC had hired to program a conveyer line operated by Mexicans who had been integrated into a European project. When the day went without a hitch, I knew that this project would be my first success at PTC.







HER CAREER PATH

I studied mechanical project development as part of a mechanical engineering group and immediately fell in love with the discipline. After completing my university studies in my native Spain, I was eager for a new experience and landed an internship at Philips Lighting in the Netherlands. At that time, Spain was experiencing a major economic crisis and I viewed the Netherlands as an opportunity to work in my field of engineering. I then took a job at Brabant Engineering and worked there for more than four years while pursuing distance studies in CAD/CAM/CAE. I eventually joined PTC a little over a year ago.


WHAT SHE CONSIDERS ESSENTIAL IN HER POSITION

Obviously technical knowledge is essential in my field, but, in my opinion, the most important qualities in business today are the ability to work in a team, logical thinking, problem solving, creativity, ambition and openness to taking on new challenges, learning and improving every day.


THE CHALLENGES SHE FACES DAILY

I’m new to the company, so I need to broaden my knowledge of the variety of equipment PTC offers. I make room in my daily work for expansive learning; by that, I mean learning a little bit more each day.


THE WORK DYNAMIC IN A PREDOMINANTLY MALE ENVIRONMENT

I don’t have a problem being surrounded by men at work. When I chose to study engineering, I knew that I would be working alongside men on a regular basis, so it’s nothing unusual for me. Based on my personal experience, women engineers are increasingly present in companies and they are being strongly encouraged to continue to integrate into the industry.


HER GREATESTSOURCE OF PROFESSIONAL PRIDE

Overcoming the language barrier was a great source of pride for me. Coming from Spain, English and Dutch were not part of my basic language skills. I also had to adapt to the culture, way of working and totally different hours than I was used to in my native country. I’m proud of how far I’ve come, but I know that it’s only the beginning.

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