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Lifelong learning as a recipe for success

Interview with Sascha (32), Deputy Head of Profit Center in the Railway Technology business unit

In 2009, Sascha joined us right after his graduation from the Higher Technical Education Institute. After pursuing a degree while on the job and a brief stint at another company, the former site manager worked his way up to deputy head of profit center. He not only enjoys the close exchange with customers and colleagues but also analytical topics such as the preparation for tenders and technical concept development.

Just a short question before we start: Sascha, why are you working in Railway Technology?

To be honest, that was a total coincidence. When I started working after my professional training, I wasn’t even familiar with this division. But a fellow student started working for EQOS Energie and ultimately brought me over here, because the company needed site managers. Nevertheless, railway technology was a good fit for me right away – even during the job interview I had the feeling that I was in good hands and integrated into the company right from the start. We have a very family-like and pleasant environment here. Not only that, the work has remained exciting to this day. Even after more than 10 years, there are still projects and construction sites that I have not yet seen or worked on in this way. There are still challenges from which I can learn something new.

Given all these challenges, has there been a highlight for you during the past few years?

It was very exciting for me to handle larger construction sites and projects, especially as a young technician. There has always been support, but it was important for me to learn a lot from the projects right from the beginning and to stand on my own two feet as soon as I could. My original training focus was automotive engineering, which has little in common with railway technology. That’s probably why I remember my first experiences so clearly: I was very soon entrusted with handling the first major project, which was the longest railway tunnel in Austria at the time. The implementation was challenging both technically and in terms of coordination with other sections. After this, I supervised the remodelling of a railway station, which is handled in a fundamentally different manner. That’s what makes railway technology so nice and special: You can learn a lot of new things with every project.

The art of the jobsite business is finding the right way to deal with each individual person and to get them excited about the project.

You have continuously climbed the career ladder at EQOS Energie: From site manager to project manager, then to head of project management and now Deputy Head of Profit Center. What do you think helped you in the process?

One definite advantage was that I was a part-time student while on the job and therefore learned and internalised a lot of things of a theoretical nature. In my interim job, I also learned a lot about dealing with processes, which I now find benefits me as well. I always want to develop and expand my skills. This means that I now have keen insight, both technically and economically. But I think it’s even more relevant to have a good rapport with other people, because I have a lot of contact with all positions – on construction sites as well as with office staff. It’s important to respond to the different needs and character of each individual and to be able to inspire everyone, each in their own way.

How did it happen that you initially left EQOS Energie and then came back?

After I had completed my studies, I wanted to take a chance to travel again in an activity area other than railway technology so that I might broaden my horizons. This was also helpful personally as I had to work my way into a different discipline. In the process, I discovered where my strengths lie but I also realised what I had at EQOS Energie before and that was now missing: We have a great team structure in our unit. Everyone stands up for each other, we support each other whenever someone needs help.

So much responsibility is certainly stressful at times – how do you deal with it?

Sure, the job is stressful at times, but the responsibility is always shared. That makes for a satisfying experience: There is no exclusive reliance on one person. We shoulder the weight of responsibility together. That’s why I am also able to leave the stress at work so that I can enjoy time at home with my family instead.