I was born/grew up in: I was born in Grimsby, ON and grew up in towns across Ontario. I have lived in Iroquois Falls, Georgetown, Hamilton, Lindsay and Geraldton.
I now live in: Sherwood Park, AB.
I completed my training/education at: I graduated from the Forestry Technologist program at Sir Sandford Fleming College in Lindsay, ON.
What I do at work
I am a Sales Manager with SITECH, a Finning Canada enterprise. I know that doesn't sound like a role that would be STEM related, but it actually is! A lot of my days and weeks are filled with traditional "business" activities. But even these involve STEM.
Leading a business, means I have to understand pricing, financial reporting and sales profitability. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't have to rely on math skills to help me through. In addition, the company that I work for sells products that are on the leading edge of technology. We sell products that use GPS, drones, survey equipment, and various types of technology solutions and software. In my role, I have to understand these technologies so that I can explain them to our customers and business partners. The technology around these products is always changing. I do a fair amount of self-learning to stay on top of the current technology. Many of the technologies that I deal with today have come a long way since my time in school. However, the skills and underlying theory that I learned in college, remain the same and help me on a daily basis.
My career path is
When I was in high school, I certainly didn't think that I would end up where I am today. I had planned to work in the forest industry. I completed my post-secondary diploma in Forestry Technology at Sir Sandford Fleming College in Lindsay, ON.
After I graduated, I secured a job in Hinton, Alberta working for a Forestry Consultant. This was a great experience! I got to apply my science training on a daily basis as I analyzed soils and tree growth. I moved to Edmonton, AB and this changed my career path. Living in the city, I had to be away from home for extended periods to continue doing my forestry field work. This wasn't appealing to me. I was fortunate to land a job selling the equipment that I was using in my forestry job. This allowed me to transfer my knowledge to a completely new role. It also challenged me to learn about other businesses such as land surveying and construction. Even as my career continues to grow and evolve, I still rely on my science background every day!
I am motivated by
No two days in my role are ever the same! One day I can be assisting with a demonstration of a drone with a customer in Saskatchewan. The next, I can be installing a 3D machine control system on an excavator in Alberta. It’s this variety and seeing how we can help our customers with solutions for their business which keeps me most excited and engaged in my role.
Another great part of my role are the people I get to work with. Each day I meet with people in our business from around the world. I get to hear their perspectives on new technology products and solutions. I find it fascinating how technology can help me connect with people around the world with the click of a button. Technology is all around me in this job!
How I affect people’s lives
The technology products that I sell in my role at SITECH, help our customers in the construction industry, do their jobs more efficiency and be more profitable. Our products help our customers get projects done faster and with greater accuracy. This technology is becoming more popular, so just like our phones and laptops, it is also getting more affordable. This technology not only makes our customers’ jobs easier, it also helps reduce their environmental impact – as new equipment and machines emit less emissions and are more environmentally-friendly. Seeing the difference that we make for our customers is very rewarding!
Outside of work I
Outside of work, I enjoy camping and fishing! I volunteer with my children's sports teams.
My advice to others
My career path has been anything but a straight line. My advice to anyone interested in a similar career would to be open to change and embrace new opportunities. Variety keeps things interesting and makes going to work fun!