Naveed Andrabi, Sales Manager here at Schneider Electric shares his key milestones, learnings, and achievements from his career inside and outside Schneider.
After completing my bachelors in Electronics and Communication Engineering, I went on to complete a Masters (MSc) in Management at University of Leeds. I knew during the last year of my bachelors that I wanted to merge technology with business practice and create an opportunity for myself. This was a decade ago!
During my education I worked part time in the Retail sector and continued working full time until I secured a role working for a SME as a Business Development Manager. This was a challenging role and taught me how to be resilient and wear multiple hats at the same time.
A key learning that I still use and advocate to my peers and colleagues at Schneider, is the qualification of opportunities and the fact obtaining commitments from customers is equally important as managing customer expectations. First past the goal post or first out of the race was an essential learning that improved my awareness, coverage, conversion and hit rate of opportunities.
My second role was working as a CRM manager where big data, analytics, software design and testing was done in an agile environment. This was more a development role on the execution side within a software team. Where project deadlines and prioritising key actions were the main responsibilities. Early engagement with stakeholders and problem solving were the main takeaways. Prior to joining Schneider, I had worked across three different sectors in various roles spanning across 5 years. They were equally rewarding and challenging at the same time.
My journey from Bid Engineer to Sales Director
My Schneider journey started 7 years ago as a Bid Engineer in a team of 4 people, bidding for large and complex opportunities across various sectors, mainly Healthcare, Utilities, O&G, etc.
It was evident in my early days that there was a gap in knowledge of the entire width of the wallet. Therefore collaborating with people and networking was a key deliverable in the intended outcome.
Asking for help and learning from my failures were the two key lessons learned during this time.
I pushed myself further by completing various trainings and courses whilst doing the role. This eventually helped me execute all the learning on the job and moreover between 2017 and 2018, I was chosen to deploy a transformational programme. This was aimed at increasing our market share and profitability by increasing customer satisfaction across 5 Regions.
I had the opportunity to work and train 500+ Schneider people in Dubai, Eastern Europe, UK&I, Egypt and KSA. Interacting with people from various cultures and understanding the key issues. Whilst dealing with our customers and aligning our processes was a significant learning.
My next opportunity was to manage and lead my first team! I was at this point, responsible to manage 17 people across 4 locations in the Tendering function for the Hub Execution Centre. Our team was widely regarded as a centre of excellence. We managed to grow year on year both in revenue and profitability. And the diversity in the team increased from 0-33% over the last three years.
In the beginning of 2022, I started my new role as Sales Director for Power Systems (Independent Connection Providers/Independent Distribution Network Operators). This role is about growing our customer base. Offering digitally connected solutions and expanding on our sustainability capabilities by focusing on Decarbonisation, Battery Storage and EV opportunities.
Most of my time at work is spent equally in understanding what our customers need and helping my team to grow and learn. The rest of the time left is spent on myself, thinking, growing, and learning.
Last few years we all saw the world change and we all had to adapt our working patterns and priorities. I decided to further my skills by undertaking and completing a leadership course at INSEAD. I also qualified as an internal trainer for Tender Management Essentials and Project Management Essentials. And have delivered these core competencies for our Global Customer Projects community last year. Currently I am pursuing my MBA at University of Manchester.
Throughout my career, one thing that has stayed constant and has allowed me to do whatever I do today, is hard work and patience. Understanding what I love about my work; which is developing people, seeing them grow and in the process building best teams. This allows me to grow and develop a sense of purpose for myself.
Schneider’s vision, strategy and core values are aligned with my personal values, from diversity & inclusion, to providing energy access to people in a sustainable and efficient manner whilst reducing the carbon footprint. This is something I am passionate about and Schneider provides me with that platform to pursue excellence by fulfilling our commitment to our planet and people.
Learn more and apply to join the #SEGreatPeople team! www.se.com/careers
After joining Schneider 7 years ago, Naveed has been involved in various roles across Schneider. He has always advocated for high performance culture in his teams whilst ensuring trust and mutual respect are maintained. His leadership style is about imparting a collective vision that can be shared by people by taking collective responsibility in delivering the desired outcome.
Did we mention that apart from being a Scuba Diver, Naveed also leads a cricket team. Where he spends most of his Saturdays on a cricket field. He enjoys learning about new cultures and has worked in 5 countries!