FIG Article of the Month - December 2021

Success – a continuous journey 

Katriona Lord-Levins, Paula Dijkstra and Louise Friis-Hansen

Most often, keynote sessions are packed with the latest and most advanced developments within the profession giving the audience food for thought in their professional work and for the development of the profession. But what about the development of the persons behind it – of you and me, of your colleague, of your customer? As a person you bring your motivation, your drive and your spirit to work.

How can you best contribute with these elements to your work place securing success for yourself , for your work place profiting from your contributions and, most central, how do we ensure success for our customers and clients and other partners. This was the focus of this special and different session at FIG e-Working Week 2021.

We thought it was the right time to use the December Article of the Month to present the video recording of this special keynote session on success. This might give you some food for thought on what is success seen from your perspective, how can you contribute to your own success, to the success of your work place and of your customers and clients, and how can you also help others to succeed? So, have you thought about what success looks like to you? And how you can make it measurable? Perhaps this is a good consideration to make now that we are close to year-end, and we are soon taking our first steps into a fresh and yet unwritten new year. Now is time for you to reflect on your personal and professional success, use the insights and make changes.

Katriona Lord-Lewins, Chief Success Officer, SVP at Bentley Systems was invited to talk about success this keynote session, interviewed by the Co-Conference Directors Paula Dijkstra, Dutch Kadaster, and Louise Friis-Hansen, FIG Office.

Paula and Louise stumbled over the job title CSO – Chief Success Officer in a magazine. How many companies have a Success Officer employed? It is far-seeing of Bentley Systems to hire a Chief Success officer, and Katriona Lord-Lewins is a brilliant pioneer in this field. In this interview session she talks about what success is, and how she works with success in Bentley – and in general.

One of her main messages is to put the customer in the center and to be attentive to the customer needs. The conversation also touched the impact of COVID19 pandemic where Katriona quoted Winston Churchill “Never let a good crisis go to waste”… Many managed to change working habits and to continue to deliver in different and creative ways, which led to new ways to work, new ideas, the speed up of projects. The advancement of digitalization projects is one good example which was also a focus of one of the previous key note sessions on the impact of Covid19 on the profession.

Katriona shares her recommendations on how to make personal and professional success more tangible in your daily live. With practical examples she breaks it that down and and gives you insights of how you can implement this in your environment. She also touches the challenges in relation to technology, capacity development and how you can be more inclusive. Her quotes are inspirational and give you good food for thought for further reflections.

Some keyword takeaways of the session were:

  • Make yourself being comfortable being uncomfortable  – embrace the challenges and new ideas
  • Focus – you can only eat one cake!
  • Lead by example and share knowledge

The e-Working Week was a good time to reflect – over new knowledge, ideas, tools, and especially what points to draw from and use afterwards. In general it is a good idea to stop up and reflect on your own situation as well as your personal and professional balance. And don't forget to recognise and celebrate your own success

View the full session:

About the keynote speakers

Katriona Lord-Levins, Chief Success Officer, SVP at Bentley

Enabling proven, strategic business outcomes through people, process and technology. Kat leads User Success and Education at Bentley Systems with a relentless focus on creating loyal users by helping them realize their business value, making Bentley their solution of choice. Kat has a solid track record of building and running world class success organizations through a very hands-on approach to engaging and leading teams. Before joining Bentley, she worked for two decades at Autodesk in several roles, including, most recently, focusing on building and leading the construction business unit customer success team. Prior to Autodesk Kat worked at Alias Research in Toronto, a software company that produced high-end 3D graphics software.

Kat earned a degree in computer science from the University of Toronto. ​

Paula Dijkstra, Director a.i. of Kadaster International - co-conference director e-Working Week 2020

As Director a.i. of Kadaster International Paula is responsible for the coordination of Kadaster’s international activities and international cooperation projects. Kadaster International provides worldwide advisory services in the domain of land administration, e-governance, geo-information services and SDI. Paula is working for the international department since 2011. She obtained a Master degree in Social Geography and a grade in cadastral data acquisition and 3D modelling.   In addition to the above Paula has been appointed as the co-conference director for the e-Working Week of the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG) hosted by the Netherlands and originally planned in 2020 (postponed to 2021 due to COVID-19). She is also chair of the FIG taskforce on the Sustainable Development Goals, as well as Working Group 7.2 on Fit For Purpose Land Administration Implementation.

Louise Friis-Hansen, FIG Director

Louise has worked for FIG since August 2009. With a background as MSc in Economics and Business she loves and appreciates working together with surveyors from all over the world which is inspiring, rewarding, very instructive – a whole new and exciting world has opened up - and also time consuming!  The international environment has always been an inspiration with longer stays in both Germany and the US and previous International experience such as organising larger international events e.g. MBA Fora. Louise has previously worked in an organisation for Business Economists and is used to working with volunteers and was during her studies also volunteer in the same association; for other organisations she has worked with market analyses, organising further education in leadership and management, has an extra degree in web-writing and editing, and has for several years been web-editor before starting working in FIG.