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Matt Browell-Hook

UK & Europe

Matt is the project manager for Atkins’ work with Talisman Sinopec and is based in Aberdeen. He is responsible for a number activities to effectively deliver the framework agreement with Talisman. He is a chartered mechanical engineer and has previously worked for the Design Solutions and Power Generation (Energy) business units within Atkins.

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MOST RECENT

The dictionary tells us that to adapt is to “make suitable to requirements or conditions; adjust or modify fittingly”. Just as in other areas of life, as engineers we modify our inputs to be able to affect the output. This can be very linear and prescribed to meet a known outcome or can be more flexible to see what the outcome will be.

As engineer’s we are used to, and indeed covet our mental adaptability. We are taught how to change our viewpoint based on the information available and to make decisions with what that tells us. How then do we exploit this ability to gain personal opportunities in engineering?

I was recently lucky enough to win the Engineering Professional of the Year award at the ACE Engineering Excellence dinner. I don’t think I am a better engineer than my peers and certainly not at the theoretical level of our technical experts so why did I stand out? I believe it is because of adaptability.

I have worked in the construction industry, the power industry and now the oil and gas industry. I have adapted to suit these not by looking for the difference but looking at the similarities in the inputs. That way I can steer my career using the linear inputs and being flexible with the outputs.

When you take an engineering approach to your career and look at your inputs you will be amazed at the number of consistent facts. Your ability to stand out and move forward will be defined by your ability to bring an input from another industry and introduce it to your new one; it’s a straight forward as rearranging the equation but you must be willing to adapt.

Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa, North America, Rest of World, UK & Europe,

My name is Matt and I am a mechanical engineer working in Oil & Gas. My boss is Neil and he’s a civil engineer. The boss of my company is Uwe Krueger and he’s a physicist…

These descriptions are accurate but don’t describe what we do on a daily basis. My name is Matt and I’m a project manager and team lead, my boss is Neil and he’s an operations director. The boss of my company is the Chief Executive Officer of an 18,000 person company.

And therein lies the power of a STEM education. We do not define ourselves by our current roles but by the principles and attitudes we learnt in our formative education, be that at college, university or during an apprenticeship. In a recent meet and greet with our new Oil and Gas European QHSE manager we were all asked to introduce ourselves and give a bit of background. Interestingly both I and my new colleague started with “I’m a mechanical engineer”. Our current roles do not rely on this background but are indelibly informed and improved because of it. A STEM education forms a challenging, inquisitive mind which rather than define them into a single discipline and job type opens the full range of possibilities to them. Even engineering firms are businesses and businesses need lots of skills and roles to thrive.

I best describe this as “I am an AM not an IN”. My friends who work in many varied fields often describe themselves as being IN their field i.e. I am IN marketing, I am IN sales, I am IN finance, etc. I have never been IN engineering, but I AM an engineer. Being an AM means I can be anything I want.

Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa, North America, Rest of World, UK & Europe,