If you go to work at Schlumberger, be careful what you show enthusiasm and aptitude for—you may find yourself moving into your next job role in the blink of an eye. Andrea Pound is a good example. Hired straight out of Houston’s Rice University in 2005, she progressed through several software development projects to become software architect for an intelligent completions product in 2013, then became a software project manager for a cloud-based landing point for Industrial Internet of Things (IioT) data, which led to a position as Cyber Security Architect. Then, in 2018, she had a novel idea.
“My boss and I began lobbying management to start a shared delivery infrastructure team.” The project received funding for 2020, and Andrea was tagged as Engineering Project Manager for the new team. “I get to work on evolving shareable infrastructure as code, which can transform our software development process.”
When Andrea was recruited in 2005, she was fascinated to learn that Schlumberger software engineers develop software for other engineers, so you get to learn about what those engineers do as well. She was also intrigued by the company’s cultural diversity and collaborative spirit. “Schlumberger has a ‘go big or go home’ attitude. We do not think small! Everything we do depends on collaboration across teams, across disciplines, and across the world. Often we’re doing things in ways or at a scale that hasn’t been done before. Anyone can propose a new idea, and we have in-house systems that allow us to link our ideas with mentors who can help.”
Besides the structured development program, Andrea has taken several technical training courses purely out of curiosity, and has been able to leverage them creatively in her projects. A few years into her career, Andrea had a manager who encouraged her to take on responsibilities such as organizing events or giving tech talks. “It never would have occurred to me to try these things: I felt there were so many other people who were smarter or better qualified. But my manager’s encouragement got me past that mindset. Since then, I have gotten involved in different external organizations and events, and I’ve learned a lot as a result.”