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15 Apr 2022

Women in Engineering at Kent

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We attract the best within the energy industry by creating a work environment that works for everyone. How uninspiring would it be if we employed people whom all fitted into a cookie-cutter profile? We see people as people, not cogs in a machine. Our people come from many different backgrounds and have different wants and needs in their lives. Their work-life should work in harmony with their whole life because when things are in balance, people are happier and more fulfilled, which ultimately drives better results.

Jenny Hinks has had quite a journey with Kent through both personal and professional milestones, working in harmony. Fancy reading about her inspiring story?

Can you tell us a bit about your role?​

Over my 9 years at the company, I have spanned across the Technical, Project Management, Business Development and Operations Management career paths. I have worked with clients and teams from all over the world, on a huge variety of projects, from maximising efficiencies in the North Sea to the exciting new Carbon Capture concepts. I have led all sorts of business development and marketing initiatives and supported our teams to do what they do best. ​

What do you like about working for Kent?​

One of the key things I love about working here is the flexibility I have, both in terms of my career opportunities and the work-life balance. I joined the company in 2012 as a Project Engineer. My partner worked a 9-day fortnight (working an extra hour each day and getting every second Friday off), and I was delighted to be able to do that as well. We really made the most of those years, making the most of the long weekends to explore Scotland with our friends. After we got married, I didn’t want to have any regrets before inevitably ‘settling down, so I requested to take a 6-month sabbatical. I spent the winter training to be then working as a ski instructor in the Austrian Alps. My husband was working in a rotational role at the time, so he was able to come out and join me in the mountains on his time off. It was glorious!​

That sounds amazing, How did you feel when you returned to work? ​

I came back to work refreshed and ready for new challenges, and with a new appreciation of the good relationships with my leadership team after grovelling with the ski school bosses! Over time I was pleased to fall pregnant, finally feeling ready to settle down. A couple of months before I was due to go on maternity leave, a new Team Lead role was advertised. I mentioned to my line manager that I would have been interested had the timing been better, but she encouraged me to apply anyway. I got the job, and everyone was supportive that it was about choosing the right person for the role for the longer term. ​

Congratulations on your baby and new position as Team Lead. Tell us about your experience with work-life balance at Kent​.

I knew working part-time once I had a family wouldn’t be an issue, as there were a number of role-model women in senior leadership positions who did just that. I have since had a second baby and kept my 3-day week pattern; I find it a good balance. While I was on maternity leave earlier this year, I was awarded my current role as Aberdeen Operations Lead. I was excited to come back to a new role and the new challenges and opportunities it brings.​

You have had some great milestones in both your personal life and professional life. Being able to do that, what does that mean to you?​

I've always worked hard and enjoyed my job and didn't want to think I would need to sacrifice that just because I also wanted to start a family. Kent has proven that for me, and for many women like me, that doesn't need to be the case. ​

Thank you Jenny for sharing, if you there is one last thing you would tell people about life at Kent, what would that be? ​

No two days are ever the same, and I am very grateful to work in a company where I feel empowered and supported to do what I want to do, both inside of work and out.​

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