To kick things off, could you tell us a bit about your career background and current role?
My previous background is not related to my current role. I have pursued a military career as a special forces officer in the Hellenic Army. However, I was always interested in engineering. Therefore, while working, I pursued my master’s degree in Systems Engineering.
At CyanoGuard I am working as Head of Hardware Engineering. I have built our device which performs colorimetric analysis on our chemical sensor. I am also supporting my team that works in production. I have developed two applications for the production team and adjusted the robotic arm to automatize the production. Moreover, I am continuously looking for ways to improve our device and implement suggestions from our clients.
What have you done regarding personal development since you started at CyanoGuard?
Well, just working here helped me to learn so much. I think experience is the best teacher. I have faced many challenges while building our device, and I have always managed to overcome them and learned so much in the process. I gained a lot of experience in developing frameworks and electronics. More than anything, I gained confidence. Now, when I face a problem, I know I can overcome it efficiently. There can be no problem that doesn't have a solution.
How have you seen CyanoGuard change since your time here?
I was one of the first team members, and it is rewarding and amazing to see how much we grew in the past few years. Of course, I know how much I improved our device, but the whole production process improved and got more efficient. Our company improved also in terms of business development, we have visited many clients and mines. We are continuously working on our marketing efforts and of course on the quality of our product. Receiving feedback from clients on these visits was the most rewarding to me, so we can improve our product and adjust them for their specific needs.
It is inspiring seeing many positive changes in such a short time.
What is your most outstanding professional achievement?
Designing and building our current CyanoSmart device has been my biggest achievement so far.
I had to make sure that our device is very accurate and that all the external factors (there are quite a lot in mines) don’t interfere with our measurements. I managed to isolate all the possible influences and improve the accuracy of our device. That was my biggest challenge and now is also an achievement of mine.
What’s one professional skill you’re currently working on?
The skill I am currently working on is data analytics. I am learning how to use data and statistics to extract the information I need for my work. If I misinterpret data I can make a mistake in production, therefore I had to learn how to read it properly. When I started to work as a hardware engineer, I didn’t think I would need data analytics. Now, most of my work is based on data analytics skills.
How do you like to best approach an issue in the production line?
Of course, it depends on the issue.
During COVID times the biggest issue wasn’t the device itself but rather the logistics. There has been an ongoing global chip shortage and most of the companies are still struggling with procuring electronic components in a timely manner. I had to make sure I placed orders months in advance to be able to have them when needed. I always must have multiple sources to get my parts if some of them cannot deliver the order. How I approach these logistical issues is that I try to anticipate the sales and market needs in advance and prepare myself as much as I can.
What excites you most about CyanoGuard's technology?
I like the fact that our product is multidimensional. One side relates to chemistry, and the other to electronics. To make sure our device functions perfectly we must make sure that both processes are optimized. I am talking from my perspective, and I know that our device and technology are currently the best on the market when it comes to cyanide monitoring and process optimization. Therefore, I am excited to work on our device and on new features that hopefully soon will be expanded also to different industries.
What values do you like to live by?
The values that drive me most are honesty, teamwork, and love for whatever I am doing.
We have three key product components here at CyanoGuard, and we all must collaborate and be honest with each other to work well. I believe our team excels in this.
Also, I have managed to turn my passion into my full-time job. It is rewarding to wake up every day and go to work knowing you are doing something you love. I would recommend everyone to continue pursuing their dream, it is worth it.
What advice would you give to someone looking to start an engineering career?
To start working as an engineer you must love problem-solving. You need to be able to think critically. Use all your knowledge to approach challenges and don’t stress yourself when facing a challenge but do the opposite, be happy about every opportunity to learn something new.
I can say for myself that I have always been, an engineer at heart as I love problem-solving.