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Adnan Akram Zia, alumni in Business and Technology, tells about his studies and career

Photo of our alumni Adnan Akram Zia
From Production Engineering to a Specialist in Smart Grid Technologies
Adnan Akram Zia, Portfolio Sales Manager, Siemens, alumni from MSc in Business and Technology, Tampere University

After completing my engineering degree, I worked for a few years as a production engineer in a Pakistani manufacturing company. My work as a production engineer exposed me to the business aspects of the global manufacturing value chain which I found very fascinating.

After becoming more interested in the business side, I decided to expand my career to global sales and Master's programme in Business and Technology (B&T) turned out to be a life-changing experience. A carefully crafted study programme, multicultural learning environment and good teaching staff, not to speak of solving real-world business issues in challenging company projects, provided me with the management expertise needed to succeed in a global, technology-driven business environment.  

My studies started an interesting professional evolution. My knowledge of Pakistani manufacturing sector first got me a position as an export engineer focusing on selling power quality solutions to Pakistani manufacturing companies. My engineering background helped me expand my knowledge into power systems and power quality solutions. In a few years I was promoted first Area Sales Manager and later Sales and Marketing Manager. 

After some years, I wanted new challenges. I now work as a Portfolio Sales Manager in Siemens, developing business & selling technologies enabling smart grid in the Nordic and Baltic markets. Integration of renewable energy sources as well as electrical vehicles require new solutions to enhance stability and resilience of power grid. My background from power-electronics-based power equipment provided a solid background to expand to this fast-growing area. 

As my story shows, I have always built my competencies on top of the ones I already had, enabling a very interesting career development. First B&T enabled me to build sales competency as well as conceptual and analytical skills needed in business development. While working in the power industry, I have kept on improving my understanding on power electronics and their role in the modern power systems. It is Immensely interesting to be part of and support such industry transition selling state-of-the-art solutions. What I appreciate the most in B&T is that it leads us to interesting career pathways by taking full use of our engineering degrees while also providing the right tools and mindset to advance in our business careers.