With over 18 years in the industry, Mike has extensive experience in environmental impact assessment, environmental management plans, strategic environmental assessment, site selection processes, and stakeholder engagement. He has worked on water resource developments, major infrastructure developments, power stations and waste management projects in Australia and South Africa.
The most important lesson you learnt early in your career?
A particularly influential lesson I learnt from Helen Zille, (who went on to become the Mayor of Cape Town, Western Cape Premier and Leader of South Africa's Official Opposition Party) was never to put pen to paper until one has absolute clarity on the purpose of the communication and who you are writing to.
What is an essential key to innovation?
Challenges, including tight deadlines, budget constraints, and the unexpected seem to fuel innovation; but equally important is a can-do attitude, the time and space to think and being allowed to fail, and then encouraged to try again and again.
Keys to a successful project delivery?
Team effort. While it is vital to understand the client’s needs and expectations, to plan thoroughly and review the plan along the journey, and to be cognisant of the program and budget, it is people who deliver projects. Good honest communication, team ownership of projects, some satisfaction and recognition for effort, are essential ingredients.
Where do you see Environmental Management over the next five years?
There are considerable opportunities in Africa and other emerging markets and I anticipate that Aurecon will establish a presence in further countries and undertake projects in many more.