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Business Unit Manager (Chemical Engineer, MBA (Industries: Tech, Marine, Energy, Oil & Gas)), Ref: 123411 – Online Interview Questions

Ref: 123411

Nationality: South African
Highest Formal Qualification: BSc Chemical Engineering
Annual Package Range: ZAR 1.35 mil - 1.5 mil, per annum
Total years experience: Years

Business Unit Manager

Current / most recent job title?

Executive: Business Unit Manager

1. Primary purpose of current/most recent position:

I manage 2 business units:

1) leading commercial transactions to ensure a viable business
2) ensuring world-class operational activities including facilities and estate management
3) supporting investor infrastructure projects and ensuring healthy investor relations
4) establishing and growing our innovation programme
5) creating and implementing our business development strategy

2. Core elements or functions that must operate effectively in order to achieve primary purpose:

In this role, the following three elements are key:

1) Alignment on objectives and expectations with internal and external stakeholders as there are multiple dependencies
2) Managing the risk of all activities ensuring good governance, compliant and safe working conditions.
3) Creating value in all activities undertaken, from daily improvements to major projects.

The above requires a mindset of taking ownership, having the range to deal with multiple and varying opportunities, challenges and stakeholders, being a lifelong learner to find new solutions and simply an attitude to get things done.

3. Description of self, along with greater purpose and passions:

My life philosophy is to give this world good energy and make an impact – through my connections I meet, the projects I deliver and to processes I get to design.

From my professional experiences, I am led by my curiosity, thrive on challenges, and always keep a beginner’s mind.

When in a meeting room or around the coffee machine, I am likely to be an energetic and resilient force, have a bias for action and always set out to make a meaningful contribution to my teams, clients and to the company’s success.

4. Ideal business title: 

1) Management Consultant
2) Programme and or Project Implementation Manager
3) Business Development & Operations Manager

5. Key responsibilities and accountabilities of ideal position:

Build and grow the P&L of the company
Working on a variety of projects with cross-functional teams
Leading a high-performance team
Working with external stakeholders

6. Skill area of competence:

Energy Industry Value Chain
Tech Industry specifically marketplaces

Strategic Planning
Project & Program Management
Business Development & Investment Attraction
Commercial Deal Making
Operations Management and Process Improvement
Business Analysis

7. Career summary:

Exploration & Production: 3 years
Trading & Supply: 6 years
Infrastructure Development & Investment Promotion: 3 years

Ecommerce Marketplace: 3 years

8. Achievements: 

Provided catalytic project management and project finance support for Energy and Maritime services & manufacturing projects for an R21bn+ investor pipeline as investor relations support and retention.

Exceeded the annual target of 8+ property and facilities lease agreements and increased occupancy across the estate portfolio; procurement of R20m+ service contracts and formed part of the negotiations team for principal lease transactions as commercial manager and dealmaker.

Established new business development opportunities such as renewables & green hydrogen

9. What do you absolutely love doing?

I love being part of a smart, agile and purpose-led organisation.

More specifically –

being part of a high-performance team (and managing such).
having significant P&L responsibility.
being able to deliver a wide range of projects/programmes/studies
building and growing investor relations
Ability to iterate, innovate and bring about incremental or catalytic change

10. Ideal company (culture and values):

People – Smart, Value-Based team and leadership
Impact – making a meaningful contribution to society
Reward – working together to ensure a sustainable company and reward its people.
Agility – ability to execute, iterate, innovate and find solutions


Where would you like to be in your career in the next 5 to 10 years, what would you like to have achieved?

In a corporate environment, would like to be a regional manager in an organization and lead projects/ operations of significant value.

What are your strengths?

Strong Technical and Analytical Abilities in:
> Operations
> Supply Planning & Scheduling
> Stakeholder Management
> Value Creation, Business Optimization & Value Leakage Prevention
> Project Management & Delivery
> Change Management

On a more fundamental level, I excel in challenges which let me step out of my comfort zone, which appease my curious nature and allows me to collaborate and connect with diverse stakeholders. I am emerged by working on projects and operations that requires a hand-on approach, an eye for detail and that is focused on value delivery.

What are your weaknesses (e.g. most important blind spots / developmental needs identified)?

Areas for Technical competencies:

> Negotiations & commercial skills can be further developed

Areas for Personal Development:

> I thrive in environments where my enthusiasm and energy for tasks at hand is supported and understood. When I commit to a task, I give it my all and deliver it as such, go the extra mile and get things done. I have been perceived at times of being too passionate.


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