Valentine N.

Name: 
Valentine N.
Company title: 
Project Manager (ITSM)
Years at CTG: 
11 years
Hometown: 
Aba, Nigeria
Current City: 
Helecine, Belgium
Favorite Thing to Do Outside of Work: 
Learning to play piano (as a beginner) and acting as a “chauffeur” for my two kids (football trainings, music academy, dance school, and Scouts).
Favorite Song Right Now: 
“Havana” by Camila Cabello

My alarm is set to ring at 6:00 a.m., but I tend to snooze it for another 15 minutes. I leave the house around 6:45 in order to beat the traffic along my 45km route to work.

On arrival (around 7:30 a.m.) at the client site, I spend the first hour going through my emails, calendar, and to-dos and planning my team’s tasks of the day based on priorities. By 8:30 a.m., most of my colleagues have arrived and we go for a quick breakfast at the cafeteria. During this 15- to 20-minute breakfast, we chat about the core pending tasks.

My team is responsible for the day-to-day management of the client’s CAD design domain, including all high-performance computers and applications in the European CAD sites (Belgium, France, U.K., Poland, Czech Republic, and Turkey).

Our client’s European CAD domain is a highly secured environment that has no email access or internet. All USB ports are blocked by policy. Cameras and smartphones are not allowed either. This is where all past and future European car models and parts are designed in 3D format before the prototypes are produced for evaluation and approval by executives. After multiple corrections to the 3D images and prototype approvals, a new face-lift or car model is born.

To acquire physical access to the CAD design rooms, security officers need a chain of approvals from higher R&D management. My team demands the same type of clearance before creating CAD user IDs or granting a new engineer the appropriate access to CAD data servers.

As the Team Lead and Project Manager, most of my time is spent meeting with different design teams to discuss their ongoing or upcoming projects that needs IT implementations and changes. We manage their requests and incidents; follow up with hardware and software vendors or suppliers on new acquisitions; test and lead system migrations; apply critical updates; implement new solutions; and provide third-level IT technical support to some of the best designers in Europe.

At the end of my work day, usually around 5:00 p.m., I leave the office to pick up my kids from school. Three days a week, they have their after-school activities. The most refreshing part of the day is arriving home with the kids by 7:00 p.m. and smelling delicious food upon entering. Food is ready…thanks to my wife.

During dinner, we all share the highlights of our days. The kids play a little bit before bedtime. When they are fast asleep, I usually grab a bottle of beer or share a glass of wine with my wife while catching up on news or watching a movie on Netflix.

I consider myself very fortunate to have a job that is full of challenges and opportunities to learn new things each day while providing the needed professional solutions to the client.

Gaining the trust of your client means you get to run critical projects, new implementations, or other tasks with full autonomy. I get a sense of fulfillment and excitement when things are done on time. During my early years at CTG, my ITSM management made sure I got the necessary trainings, workshops, certifications, and support when needed, and has continued to provide their support and guidance. CTG’s Competence Development strategy has been immensely effective. It truly is a “Great Place to Work.”