Women Transforming Energy: Gurpreet Kaur
In honor of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, we are shining a spotlight on the women of Quorum who are transforming the business of energy through technology. This spotlight features Director, Engineering Gurpreet Kaur from our Pune office.
Tell us about your current role.
I am heading the EC Engineering department in Pune, responsible for product deliveries, optimized processes, building high-performing teams, and working in close collaboration across geographically distributed teams. I see myself as an enabler, enabling team members to identify their real potential as I empower them and build autonomous teams.
Who inspires you and why?
I believe all of us are touched in one way or another by many around us at some point in our careers or lives to get to where we are. I have been led by some great leaders who inspired me in different ways. “If you cannot be replaced, you cannot grow,” are wise words from Marianne Woldbye Tholin, whom I worked with many years ago. She always believed in making her team grow. If you build your substitute, you automatically level up and there is never a dearth of opportunities, be it vertically or horizontally.
One of my recent managers Torbjorn Lundmark taught me: “Make mistakes and learn from them.” Don’t be afraid of failure. He always said those who do not attempt will never fail. So never be afraid of failure – make mistakes, learn, and grow.
What keeps you at Q?
The work culture and the values at Quorum keep me here. The open and transparent work culture where difference of opinion is encouraged to reach the best solution. The innovative thoughts and ideas are welcomed. The values are not just words on a page, but concepts we live each day. When it comes to work, we are thoroughly professional, yet knit as a close family.
What have you done to develop high-performing teams?
All of us understand the important factors for building high-performing teams; the environment of trust, shared vision, open transparent communication, and mutual respect would be some key elements. There is no magic bullet to build these attributes, it’s about being patient and building a team culture. I believe in participative leadership. With each team you need to work together, enable them, empower them to take decisions, and support them in their actions.
What has Q done to support your career/growth?
We have very strong and supportive leadership at Q which has always been challenging me with new opportunities, while also supporting me to succeed.
What is your favorite memory at Q?
One year's journey at Q has been full of learning experiences. We joined Quorum through an acquisition. Like any other acquisition, the initial phase had its challenges. There were many uncertainties and insecurities. We were two companies with different cultures, mindsets, and ways of working coming together and becoming #OneQuorum. Quorum leadership addressed this phase directly, and we as employees felt welcomed, cared for, and appreciated. To establish #OneQuorum, many initiatives were started in the very early phase, including the Ambassador Program and the Buddy Program. The Ambassador Program consisted of a team of ambassadors around the globe who engaged employees at all levels while providing information to leadership throughout the transition. In the Buddy Program, each member was assigned a buddy from the other company to establish communication and create collaboration among the employees of both companies. These programs were so meaningful, and I met wonderful people as part of the process.
What advice do you have for women just starting their careers?
We are seeing a big shift in women’s careers and growth. Earlier women were stereotyped to few limited career paths. Women today have the opportunity to demonstrate their skills in areas that were previously only available to men. Due to globalization and disruption in the business world and politics, we are seeing strong female leadership around the globe. Countries like Finland and New Zealand are both being led by female leaders. To the women who are just beginning their careers, I would say, belief in yourself and you can achieve any heights you wish for!