andrew-smith-country-chair-shell-australia

Tell us about your career path at Shell?

I joined Shell Australia in 1986 as an engineer at the Geelong Refinery.

I spent the early years of my career in various technical and operational roles across Australia before moving to Fiji in 1999, where I was the General Manager of Shell’s Fiji and Pacific Islands business. I then moved to London as a global team leader in the Product Trading business and subsequently to Singapore where I was appointed Shell’s Manufacturing Director in that region, a role that included management of Shell’s world class Pulau Bukom Refinery.

In 2006 I was appointed Shell’s Vice-President of Global Products Trading, based in the company’s London trading centre. After several years abroad, I returned to Australia with my family in January 2010, and took up the newly created position of Vice President Downstream Australia. In July 2013, I was appointed to my current role as Shell’s Country Chair in Australia and Vice-President of the company’s upstream businesses in Australia and New Zealand.

Describe what makes Shell’s Graduate Programme unique?

In answering this question my mind goes back to my experience working at Shell’s refinery in Geelong in the mid-1980s, and to a supervisor called Cliff, who amongst other things had to supervise graduate engineers like me. The lessons I learned observing Cliff have stayed with me and had a deep impact on my career.

The refinery was Shell’s, but Cliff owned the kit we worked on. He helped build it. Selected the staff who worked on it. He treated the processing unit as if it was his. If you worked there, you were in his house, and with that he assumed responsibility.

I recall how he cared deeply for those worked on the unit, and he held all of us to such a high standard. It’s the people at Shell that our graduates work with and learn from that makes our graduate programme really special.

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