Women in Wind 2020 Q&A: Judit Szasz

 
The Women in Wind Global Leadership Program sat down with Judit Szasz, one of this year’s Mentors, to chat about her pathway to renewable energy and issues facing women in the wind sector. 
 

Judit is the Senior Project Manager in SGRE Offshore, based in Vejle, Denmark. She has extensive experience in Project Management as Project Manager, Senior Project Manager and Department Head. Judit – together with her dedicated team of individual contributors and managers – led complex telecom and renewables projects across the globe, mainly in Europe, Africa and Asia.

Judit has dedicated the recent 12 years of her professional career to the wind industry with Siemens / Siemens Gamesa. Judit recently relocated to Denmark, after being based in Shanghai. She is a Mechanical Engineer with an Edinburgh Business School MBA and a complementary diploma in Foreign Trade.
 
 

How did you first become interested in renewable energy and joining the clean energy transition?

It started with a choice to join Siemens Wind Power in 2008 in Denmark. I seized the opportunity and began my journey in the wind industry and in a new country.

Tell us about your expertise and passion in the sector. How has this business area changed over the course of your career so far? For you, what is the next “space to watch” in renewable energy?

I believe climate change is the largest threat facing mankind. Each of us have a share in cleaning up the already-polluted parts of our environment, and in making sure that the not-yet-polluted parts of our planet Earth are maintained “clean and green” for the generations to come.

By being engaged in the wind industry, I contribute my own tiny micro-share to the preservation and to the mindful use of natural resources like the wind.

I am equally glad I could offer my humble expertise in the field of project management to a “green cause” by helping harness and transform the power of the wind.

I am fascinated how the industry has developed during the couple of years I’ve been part of it: how wind turbines have grown in output, and how they have become smarter.  I am very curious to see what’s next to come!

In my experience, the hoops a woman ought to jump through, in order to be accepted by men as almost equal, are higher than the hoops to be jumped through by men for the same reason.

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What sort of challenges did you encounter in entering the sector? 

I transitioned to the wind industry from telecommunications, therefore, the technology was brand new to me back in 2008 when this switch happened. However, as I continued on the line of project management and became more familiar with the basics of the wind power generation, the initial technology-related loophole shrank in size. 

In a nutshell, I can say that I was fortunate not to perceive any specific challenge when entering the renewable energy sector.

If you had to pick one key issue facing women in the wind power sector, what would it be and why?

In my experience, the hoops a woman ought to jump through, in order to be accepted by men as almost equal, are higher than the hoops to be jumped through by men for the same reason.  In my opinion, strong and assertive women are considered as “threats” by most men in leadership and are not welcomed with open arms. In contrary, strong and assertive men are perceived positively as “challengers” by the same male leadership and welcome to join the club. This is certainly not my wind power-specific observation, but rather a generic one.

Finally, what do you hope to achieve as a mentor in the Women in Wind Global Leadership Program? How will you contribute to the next generation of female leaders in the sector?

I am honored to have been selected as a Mentor for the 2020 Program. By sharing with my Mentee my experiences, successes and failures, I believe I contribute to her development, to shaping her views and to supporting her ability to respond to situations that women in leadership face professionally. This is my time to “pay it forward,” and I am happy to contribute.

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