19th Jan 2024
Emerging Leader Programme: Get Acquainted with Stuart Malcolm, Quality Systems Manager
Designed for ambitious professionals aspiring to be in a leadership role, our blended learning 12-month Emerging Leader programme encourages participants to think beyond the confines of their current roles and areas of responsibility, broadening their horizons to embrace the mindset of a future leader.
Throughout the duration of the programme, we are delighted to provide you with the opportunity to get to know the individuals who are participating. So, without any further delay, it is our pleasure to introduce Stuart Malcolm!
Tell us about you... what's your work history to date?
After graduating from the University of Edinburgh with a degree in History, I initially sought a career with the Foreign Office. When this opportunity fell through, I began to work full time at the National Library of Scotland, working with rare books and manuscripts. It was here that I began to develop my interest in problem solving and working with others towards a common goal. It was a great place for the intellectually curious – hours spent searching the stacks for lost items or reading old letters penned by the great men and women of Scotland. Although I loved my time in Edinburgh, I started to look at opportunities to work closer to my family in Aberdeenshire.
To this end, I started working with Global Energy Group in Aberdeen in January 2013 as a Document Controller. This job gave me a great grounding in oil and gas fabrication. I was surrounded by experienced and knowledgeable managers and colleagues who helped me to learn, and I was quickly given opportunities to develop my role. I became more quality focused, training in internal and lead auditing. Auditing was an excellent way to gain a better understanding of the systems and processes in place at Global, and to start thinking about ways these could be improved.
More recently in my role as Quality Systems Manager, I have worked closely with Senior Management at GEG’s South Fabrication business unit on risk and opportunity management, customer satisfaction analysis, technological improvements, and business objectives. It is satisfying to facilitate discussions which lead to a better understanding of business challenges and ultimately to effective solutions. I believe that Global in general, and South Fabrication in particular, have benefited from my different work and training background. I have a quite different perspective from many of my colleagues and enjoy challenging others to see things from an alternative point of view. Diversity of thought is important if we want to progress as a company.
Who or what inspired you to peruse the career you have today?
My initial motivation for starting with Global was to move back to Aberdeenshire, having been away in Canada and Edinburgh for a number of years after leaving school. Looking back, I had no real idea what I was getting into when I started at GEG. But with the support and encouragement of colleagues and several key managers - Dave Masson, Davy Dunn and Graeme Gray - I developed my career in quality, including gaining a Masters in Quality Management.
My managers were keen for me to progress and GEG supported me through training and work experience. They all gave me their time despite having plenty of other matters to deal with. What has most inspired me at GEG to date is the work ethic of those around me. In particular, the effort and commitment demonstrated daily by senior management and experienced members of staff is impressive.
Can you provide details of a professional accomplishment in the group that you are proud of?
I am proud of the South Fabrication risk and opportunity management process which we created. Setting it up has helped Senior Management at SFAB to take a longer-term look at the where the business unit is going. By chairing regular review meetings and keeping the associated register up to date, I have helped to keep focus on mitigating risks and taking advantage of opportunities. It has also helped to improve general risk awareness in the business unit. The review process also gives management time to step back from day-to-day operations and look at the wider business context.
What inspires you, and do you have any personal goals that you are hoping to achieve?
I am inspired by seeing improvements we can make to the way things are done. For example, by bringing Wi-Fi into our workshops we were able to reduce paper use and streamline inspection processes. I like to be positive in my outlook and am keen to look for solutions rather than dwelling on problems.
From a personal point of view, I hope to continue to help SFAB to modernise processes through the introduction of technology. I would like to be involved in managing any future transition from oil and gas fabrication into other sectors, for example renewables.
What motivates and energises you at work?
I am most energised and motivated by problem solving. I love working with colleagues to fix things that are broken, or that need improved, and to develop new ways of working. I am also motivated by learning and helping others to develop.
Global Energy has been an excellent place for me to learn from my knowledgeable (and patient!) colleagues. And now that I have a decent amount of experience, I enjoy sharing my knowledge and understanding with my colleagues.