Rudi Fransen, Bilfinger Tebodin Netherlands, studied Mechanical Engineering at the University of Twente in the Netherlands. He joined Bilfinger after graduating in 2012. Over the past six years, he has worked on a number of projects in the oil and gas, food and chemical industries, first as a Mechanical Integrity Engineer, then as a Tender Manager and most recently as a Project Manager. During his job rotation in the summer of 2018, he spent three months at the headquarters in Mannheim and worked for Tom Blades.
What were your main tasks?
Many different topics came across my desk, ranging from sales to project performance, from risk management to compliance and from business intelligence to trade fairs. Most of the tasks could be taken care of relatively quickly but there were others that I worked on for the full three months. Spending your time wisely was therefore an important part of the program.
What were the biggest challenges during your stay?
Jumping on a moving train was one of the challenges in the program. I encountered topics I hadn’t come across before and had limited time to provide a proper answer. Understanding the question, the purpose and, most importantly, the recipient’s perspective were the biggest challenges during my stay.
How was it to work for Tom Blades or, in other words: is there any advice you would give to a potential successor?
It was a once in a lifetime experience. A CEO like Tom Blades has limited time, has a sound opinion on all topics and thinks five (or more) steps ahead. I would advise any successor to take the time to truly listen, to read carefully and to step out of their own paradigms.