Shahminan Ali: Leveraging His Expertise In The Geo-Acquisition Aspect Of Field Activities To Map A Beautiful Tomorrow

Shahminan Ali: Leveraging His Expertise In The Geo-Acquisition Aspect Of Field Activities To Map A Beautiful Tomorrow

Shahminan Ali , Geomatics & FDI Project Consultant

Shahminan Ali

Geomatics & FDI Project Consultant

The world depends on Geomatics. There are so many ways in which modern life relies heavily on mapping and surveying that it’s hard to imagine a world without Geomatics technologies and leaders who are adept in leveraging these technologies to develop field activities. CEO Insights’ exclusive team engages in a conversation with an all-rounder Geomatician, Shahminan Ali, who possesses combined skills in the offshore survey, onshore survey, and HSSE (Health, Safety, Security, and Environment), working in the oil and gas industry for over 30 years.

He has rich experience working for Shell in various locations including Aberdeen, Norway, Netherlands, and Brunei. He is a highly skilled individual with expertise in the area pertaining to the life cycle of the oil and gas industry and hydrocarbon-related data acquisitions and data processing. Shahminan has vast experience in handling data and converting them into information that empowers him to deliver output on a risk-based approach.

As the Founder of HYDROBEAM CONSULTANCY (HBC), he works to give advice and intelligence on the field of offshore surveys including seismic exploration surveys, field development, and offshore engineering. As for the onshore survey, Shahminan is highly proficient in the area of asset integrity and structure monitoring. As a leader, he is highly adaptable, and optimistic, and believes in continuous teamwork efforts.

Let’s hear it from Shahminan as he speaks volumes about HBC and takes us through his journey as a business leader and Geomatician.

With this SOD (Strategies, Objectives, & Deliverables) approach, HBC is able to position itself as a prime player in the market in both Oil & Gas activities & FDI project requirements

Define HBC as an organization and its position in the market.

HBC's involvement is looked at in two different contexts of activities. The first one is the oil and gas activities, and the other one is activities related to Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). In both cases, what makes HBC unique from others is its SOD (Strategies, Objectives, and Deliverables) approach. Strategy: It is a broad subject. But the basic fundamentals of its possibilities are data and information. Without these two elements, strategy options are rather limited. As a Geomatician, I focus on data gathering and information analysis. Once data is gathered, it is further processed into information. With such information, a better and more robust strategy can be formulated. Strategy acts as a major platform, as all the execution prospects should be prepared within the strategy.

Second, I establish detailed objectives. Once the strategy is confirmed carving detailed objectives becomes simpler. These two aspects work hand-in-hand. At last, the deliverable is designed as per the objectives using the pre-determined strategy. This is to include all KPI(s) and added value situations. With this SOD (Strategies, Objectives, and Deliverables) approach, HBC is able to position itself as a prime player in the market in both Oil and Gas activities and FDI project requirements.

What are the best industry practices you bring into HBC that smoothen the processes from exploration activities, appraisal stage, development phase, and commissioning part, and eventually decommissioning strategy in your role?

I focus on the approach of learning and replicating. This is to ensure no reinvention of the wheel is carried out. My best practices include risk management (an important element in the planning stages), analyses & problem-solving (which fall under the strategy approach), focusing externally (I believe external is equally important as internal), working and embedding change (change is inevitable and requires adaptable approach), managing knowledge & information (as work escalates, a massive flow of knowledge & information is required for proper capturing and managing), business planning & evaluation (which is a part of risk management on commercial approach), and managing business performance. It is also important for leaders to be

creative and innovative to be able to set a benchmark for others to follow. And at the same time, they must know how to communicate, both internally and externally.

How do you guide your team to convert data into information that helps deliver the output in a risk-based manner?

I focus on understanding my team’s strengths and weaknesses. And then leverage their strengths and work on their weaknesses to foster competency-based development and build a conducive working environment. I believe in building a team as a delivery unit rather than individual glory where we support and respect each other regardless of our rank and position. We have built a shared vision for the organization. And focus on delivering results through each other’s efforts. At HBC, we value differences, display interpersonal effectiveness, and have a humorous approach while championing customer and stakeholder focus.

How do you ensure sustainable practices in the company’s operations to uphold environmental and societal welfare?

I encourage continuous learning and self-development among team members. I enable them to operate within the best industry practices. I carry out extensive planning prior to any activities to ensure all risks are encountered for defining the requirement for technical and non-technical risks. I encourage engagement with key stakeholders; by working on strategies to boost stakeholder engagement one can witness huge business improvement, increased opportunities for learning, more effective risk management, and develop a better understanding of people's needs at different levels and across different areas.

How do you encourage your team and help bring the best out of their potential?

As a leader, I am purposeful in making sure my actions always push the team ahead with positivity and productivity. I help them to bring the best out of their potential by constantly motivating, coaching, and developing their skills, and empowering them to demonstrate courage on the job training.

Tell us about some of the milestones of your professional journey.

I have successfully delivered the first road map of Brunei. I am one of the pioneers of the first automatic vessel tracking using satellite-based positioning and of the first remote positioning for anchor dropping. I have successfully led Brunei Shell Technical Services for ISO14001 certification on the first attempt. I have been involved in the first stakeholder engagement for Brunei Shell on produced water disposal. And led back to basic project No.14 onshore asset mapping. I have worked purposefully as the team lead for the Seria Flooding and Remediation Project and team member of FRD (Focus Result Delivery) for HSE Data Management. I have been instrumental in conducting a major scale training with the Survey Department of Brunei on Basic Hydrographic Surveys for Brunei government agencies.

What is the future destination you are headed towards?

I aim to ensure Brunei has its Offshore Geophysical survey data and information concluded as a basis to promote Blue Economy in the country value by bringing in potential foreign investors, creating a high-quality workforce for Bruneian and constantly looking for solutions toward renewable or alternative energy. I also aspire to impart my knowledge through training and free presentations to schools, institutes, and organizations here in Brunei and abroad.

Shahminan Ali, Geomatics & FDI Project Consultant, Hydrobeam Consultancy (HBC)

A university of east london graduate in land survey & mapping sciences, shahminan has profound knowledge of the geo-acquisition aspect of field activities. He is competent in data gathering and data analysis, hence is able to successfully strategize, establish objectives, and define deliverables at hydrobeam consultancy.

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