“Welcoming people from all over the world”

04.11.2019

Munich is growing and growing, also because many people from abroad come here for an attractive job. According to a study by the consulting firm Mercer published in spring, Munich is the city with the third-highest quality of life worldwide for expatriates. Of the almost 1.6 million inhabitants of Munich, more than one in four has a foreign passport. In addition to the quality of life, people from abroad especially appreciate the leisure activities, the environmental quality, the security and, last but not least, the career opportunities.

The vast majority of TSCNET Services employees also come from abroad – currently from almost 30 different countries. Jamilette Johnston, or Jamie for short, knows this situation well. Originally from NYC, she has lived in Miami, Madrid and moved to Munich almost ten years ago. She runs one of the most successful blogs for foreign employees and their families in Munich: “City Starlings”. The motto: “Inspiring Expats”! We met Jamie for a talk.

Hello, Jamie, let’s start right at the beginning: What is it like to move to Munich from abroad?

Moving to Munich, or any city for that matter, can turn out to be an amazing or a daunting experience. It depends on so many factors: If this is your first move abroad, it can certainly be overwhelming for anyone. If you are moving from a city with a warm climate, you might find the cold winter months in Munich challenging. If you move from a city with a lot of pollution or dirty streets, then Munich will seem utopian. It’s all relative, isn’t it?
But really, the only factor that will make this a successful expat experience is YOU. You and only you will take what life has to offer and turn it into the best adventure you can embark on.

Many do not come alone but have their partner with them. I read the following line from you: “A happy Spouse, makes a happy House!” What do you mean by that?

It is especially hard for the trailing spouse, who has left behind work, family, friends, an entire support system to start anew. I suggest using this opportunity to travel, to learn the local language, to meet new people and immerse yourself in new cultures. It is easier said than done, but maybe all your sacrifices lead you to finding your life’s purpose.

We also often experience that the partner is a very vital support when settling in. Who or what else can help one?

Luckily, the city offers countless opportunities for expats. Munich has become a very multi-culti city, welcoming people from all over the world. Due to this, there are several international groups you can join, such as Internations, Meetup, Munich International Women’s Club, etc. You can also volunteer for nonprofits, such as, ReDI School or SMILE – English Choir. Meet with like-minded people, but don’t forget to meet the locals as well. They possess a wealth of information.

That’s a good cue. We are convinced that we as an employer and especially the co-workers can be a great support, but we also always advise to build something up outside the office and the circle of co-workers and to take advantage of the many opportunities here.

You are spoilt for choice, just take the city’s cultural offer: I wouldn’t even know where to begin, but museums, opera, ballet, theatre, concerts, there is so much of a selection throughout the year, that you cannot get bored. There’s something for every taste.
Many times, your preferences will adapt to your new surroundings. Since coming to Munich, the outdoors has become my playground. I took up hiking and skiing, which was new and scary at first. But with the pre-Alps and Alps so close, I had to give them a chance and have fallen in love with nature. Walchensee, Benediktenwand and Tegernsee are great places for hiking. And there are so many great ski resorts like Wilder Kaiser, Ski Amade and Zillertal. For me, that had another positive side effect: This has made it easier for me to cope with the winter months 

That must have been a pretty big change. In the past, on a beautiful winter weekend, half of Munich was somewhere on a ski slope in the Bavarian uplands or in Tyrol. What role do the neighbouring countries play for expats?

It has been amazing to discover the beauty of these neighbouring countries – Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Czech Republic and so many more. Take advantage of their proximity. You can discover so many amazing places inside and outside Germany by car, but also by train. The “Bayern-Ticket” is one of the best kept travel tips – it can save families and large groups big bucks when traveling through Bavaria.
If you prefer to stay closer to home, Munich has much to offer: Oktoberfest, Tollwood and Auer Dult are only some of the many street festivals throughout the year. Get ready for the upcoming Christmas season! Christmas Markets usually start on the Friday before Sunday Advent and run through Christmas Eve. There are many throughout Germany offering spiced wine, food and local crafts. You can’t help being affected by the festive lights and cheerful mood of the locals.

What is your favourite among the Christmas markets?

In Munich, my favourite ones are the Medieval Market in Wittelsbacher Platz and the Christmas Village in the Munich Residenz.

Is there another tip for expats that we definitely shouldn’t forget?

Good that you ask, otherwise I would have almost forgotten the annual “Expat In The City” event – a very important event for expats. The next date is pending – so keep an eye out for updates on their website, which additionally has a lot of helpful resources for expats.
Also, venture out about town. Be a tourist in your new city. Munich is small, but there is much to see. Opt to travel by bike as much as you can. Bike paths throughout the city make it safe and practical to get around. But make sure you learn a few road rules before you do though.
And don’t give up when things get tough! I have had my ups and downs, it is not always easy. But I’ve slowly built up my support system consisting of both expats and locals alike. This balance has helped me in my own journey, and I have never regretted my move to Munich. I hope these tips help you settle into your new home.

Many thanks for the interview and all the tips, Jamie. And all the best with City Starlings!

“City Starlings” by Jamie Johnston is one of the most successful blogs for foreign employees and their families in Munich

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> Visit Jamie’s blog City Starlings (html)
> Visit City Starlings on Instagram (html)

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New hire: Explorer with a technical thirst for discovery

07.10.2019

Christian Paúl Suárez is new in our Service Operations business unit but familiar with electricity market issues. The 26-year-old Ecuadorian, who prefers to be called Paúl by his middle name, is curious to experience the differences between the South American and the European electricity markets. At TSCNET Services, Paúl should find the ideal conditions for this and advance his own career together with his new company. We warmly welcome our new Junior Operations Manager.

In the major Ecuadorian port city of Guayaquil, Paúl visited the Escuela Superior Politécnica del Litoral (ESPOL) and completed his studies as an electrical engineer in power systems. Before he graduated from the Universidad Internacional de la Rioja in Spain with a Master of Business Administration specialised in project management, he worked as “profesional de estudios económicos” (professional in economic assessment) for the Ecuadorian state power company Corporación Nacional de Electricidad, the country’s largest energy corporation with more than 1.2m end customers.

Currently, Paúl is demonstrating his ambitions by attending an online programme for a master’s degree in Renewable Energy and Energy Sustainability from the Universitat de Barcelona in Spain alongside his new job at TSCNET. As Junior Operations Manager it is his declared goal to become familiar with the functioning of the European market and network and to cooperate with the company in the management of the European interconnected energy environment.

Paúl finds not only his new company but also its location in Munich attractive. The world-famous German natural scientist Alexander von Humboldt thought Ecuador was “the most interesting region in the world” because of the “high snow-capped peaks, the active volcanoes, their vegetation and the customs of their inhabitants” – we are curious to see what remarkable things Paúl will discover here in Bavaria. The Oktoberfest, which ended yesterday, might have given some impressions.

TSCNET Services has hired Christian Paúl Suárez from Ecuador as Junior Operations Manager in the Service Operations business unit

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Data centre support – experienced and young at heart

01.10.2019

Eric Paul, our new Senior Data Centre Support Specialist in the Business Unit Corporate Services & IT Infrastructure Services, has been living in Munich for quite some time, but originally comes from far away, even for the TSCNET standard, where we are used to and proud of our international staff from different continents. With Australian-born Eric on board, we have now closed a gap as regards Oceania. During his assignments in Sydney, London and Munich, Eric has already gained a lot of experience that he now uses to bring the TSCNET data centre and the hosting environments to an enterprise standard in terms of reliability, efficiency and scalability.

41-year-old Eric was born in Sydney, where he attended the University of Western Sydney (now the Western Sydney University) and graduated with a Bachelor of Business in Computing and Information Management. He worked as IT Manager for a manufacturing company in Australia, for two years as a freelance contractor in the London financial sector and as Datacentre Manager for a global sporting goods company in Munich. Now Eric is looking forward to progressing his career at TSCNET Services and helping the company to develop further.

Coming from a very large enterprise, Eric finds it particularly stimulating to work in an environment that feels more like a family than politics. Eric has recognised that TSCNET Services has rapidly evolved from a small to a mid-size company and he is well aware of the challenges and opportunities that come with this. He thus considers being part of TSCNET a great chance to leverage his knowledge and experience in a meaningful way that can make a real difference to the business.

Despite his great experience, Eric has remained young in his very own style and when he considers himself, he finds that part of him never left the 90s. As a matter of fact, Eric is still passionate about techno and goes to raves when he has the opportunity. Since Eric has been living in Munich for a while now, we strongly assume that he does not need any recommendations in this regard. But maybe he’ll take one of his new colleagues to the next rave.

Eric Paul is the new Senior Data Centre Support Specialist in the Business Unit Corporate Services & IT Infrastructure Services

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Environmental protection award for TSCNET employee

11.09.2019

Great honour for Diana Carolina Yule Burbano: The Junior Operations Manager in our Service Operations business unit was awarded the Environmental Protection Pin of the Fördergesellschaft der Schleswig-Holsteinischen Wirtschaft (Business Development Corporation of the German Federal State of Schleswig-Holstein) for “Efforts to Protect the Environment and Climate”.

As a graduate of the “Energy and Environmental Management” (EEM) course at the European University in Flensburg in northern Germany, the Colombian-born student cooperated with Schleswig-Holstein Netz AG, a power and gas network operator in Schleswig-Holstein and northern Lower Saxony, as part of her master’s thesis. The young scientist investigated which vehicle types of the company’s own fleet are suitable for conversion to electromobility and developed her own model for estimating consumption and thus for calculating the range, taking into account factors such as load, outside temperature and traffic situation. The annual award was presented in the castle of the state capital Kiel.

Diana has been working for TSCNET Services since autumn 2018. We all congratulate her on this great award.

Dr. Philipp Murmann presents the award to Diana Carolina Yule Burbano together with Dieter Haack and Matthias Dau (Photo: Jan Köhler-Kaeß, Flintbek)

Linkup
> Open university’s press release (html)

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Soft skills training for concrete goals

12.08.2019

“Soft skills get little respect, but they will make or break your career,” says Peggy Klaus, a best-selling author and communication and leadership coach. We at TSCNET Services take a similar view. “We highly believe in the importance of continuous learning and growing together,” explains Aanchal Sood, HR & Development Manager and responsible for the TSCNET Academy with its training opportunities. The latest training is a good example of both our commitment and the opportunities we offer our employees.

At the beginning of July, one third of our employees took part in a tailor-made training programme in a well-equipped hotel directly at Lake Starnberg, about one-hour drive south of Munich. The two-day training was focused communication, team building, awareness, and diversity. A similar training was organised at the end of May and another batch is planned for September 2019 as well – this way all our employees get the opportunity to attend the programme and learn in a nice interactive environment with their colleagues. The training received first class ratings from the participants and enriched our workplace environment.

Impulses in a new environment
“When I look back at the training,” says Gopi Jayasurian, who recently joined as Junior Operations Manager, “I would see it as an overall learning experience in a professional yet very serene environment with beautiful nature around it. I think we all realised the importance of emotional intelligence and mindfulness for teamwork and organisation”. He also appreciated the direct communication and the exchange with his new co-workers. “I could not have asked for a better start than this!” emphasises Gopi.

One of Gopi’s new colleagues is business analyst Irina Boiarchuk, who has been with TSCNET Services for more than a year and a half. “For me, the training was a great refreshment through the new environment and the open, creative and motivating atmosphere,” she states. It was already her second soft skills training with us. “I have been able to further develop existing skills and gain new experience at the same time.” Irina especially liked the very lively teambuilding activities and the opportunity to get to know her colleagues and their so different personalities even better. She also gave high praise to the external trainers from High Balance, a local coaching and training provider.

All for one and one for all…
Its founder Nicola Rohner, dedicated to “holistic training and coaching”, was one of them – as often before. “Once again, we had an awesome training session in which we were able to work on the individual potential of the employees as well as grow together as a team,” she concluded. Working in such a fast growing and diverse company with so many different backgrounds and cultures is both a challenge and a wonderful opportunity. “In such a situation, being able to change perspectives and respect each other’s individual characteristics is not just nice to have, but an essential factor. But this is also one of the reasons why I enjoy working with TSCNET so much – the team’s unconditional will to change things and themselves for the better.” This by the way is exactly what we will try to do again with our future training offers.

TSCNET Services believes in first-class training and personal development (private pictures from training participants)

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New Project Manager in Portfolio Management

08.08.2019

The origin and meaning of the name Monica are not fully clarified. It could come from the Greek Monos and mean something like “unique”, or from the Latin Monachus for “monk”. Both should be fine in the case of Monica Fabi, the new Project Manager in the Portfolio Management business unit. It’s simple with the monks – the city of Munich is named after the monks and therefore has a very similar name in Italian: Monaco. And the “unique” we adopt for Monica’s professional skills.

Born in Rome, she has been working in IT for around 20 years, mainly in application development and maintenance, and has mostly worked in international teams. The 46-year-old has been living in Munich for several years now and loves meeting people from all over the world and talking to them about their different habits and cultures. That’ s why TSCNET Services is the right place for her.

Monica studied mathematics at La Sapienza University in Rome and holds a Project Management Professional certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI), the world’s largest project management organisation. She wants to use her experience and knowledge to help her new co-workers cope with the many challenges that projects present, from deadline pressure and task volume to budget. Ultimately, it’s all about customer satisfaction, explains Monica. “I want to contribute to the growth and success of the company – and continue to enjoy my work,” she adds.

Next to work, she enjoys reading, trekking, visiting art museums and studying new methods and techniques related to her discipline. Even the museum trips could prove helpful: “Being a Project Manager is like being an artist, you have the different coloured process streams combining into a work of art,” as her well-known colleague Greg Cimmarrusti puts it.

Monica Fabi, the new Project Manager in the Portfolio Management business unit (picture: TSCNET Services)

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New hire: Fledgling artist bridging the gap

06.08.2019

“He is always pleasure working with and he has shown tremendous responsibility and sense of delivery with a strong technical strength,” writes one of his former superiors on a well-known international professional platform. We at TSCNET also believe in his qualities and are pleased to introduce him as the new Solution Architect in the Business Unit Service Development: Krishnakumar Srinikethan Gaddam, Krishna for short.

Born in India, he completed his Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Science in 2006 and most recently worked for various companies in Germany and Belgium as a Technical Architect and as a Business Analyst respectively SOA Solution Architect. In our team, he wants to act as a bridge between business with TSOs, other RSCs, and ENTSO-E on the one hand, and IT on the other. He sees an important focus of his work in streamlining and governing IT provision using architectural principles.

Krishna chose our company not only because he is interested in the field of energy. He is convinced that the IT evolution is still in its fledgling stages compared to other industries, “so I have the opportunity to explore, learn, develop and articulate the best of the IT practices,” he says. That is something his new co-workers certainly can endorse!

TSCNET has welcomed Krishna Gaddam as the new Solution Architect in the Business Unit Service Development (picture: TSCNET Services)

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Michela and Gopi, the newcomers in service operations

09.07.2019

TSCNET Services is on course for continued growth in order to meet the increasing demands with more and more services for our customers. In a booming region like Munich, this is not so easy. Our Business Unit Service Operations is pleased to announce two additional Junior Operations Managers: Michela Monaco and Gopi Jayasurian.

Michela Monaco comes from a small town near Pisa. Her father is Italian, but her mother comes from the Philippines. And actually her surname leaves her no choice but to move to Bavaria’s capital: Munich in Italian is Monaco, Monaco di Baviera to be exact. In addition, Munich has its reputation as “Italy’s most northern city”. The 26-year-old studied at Università di Pisa, first energy engineering for her bachelor’s degree, then electrical engineering for her master’s degree. Her thesis was also done at ABB’s Corporate Research Center in Ladenburg, Baden-Württemberg. So she already knows Germany.

At TSCNET, Michela wants to gain valuable experience and develop within the company with its open but challenging environment. To balance this out, she focuses on cooking, reading, hiking and above all her own vegetable garden with great home-grown tomatoes.

Gopi Krishnan Jayasurian is a 25-year-old electrical engineer from Kerala in the far south of India. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and Electronics from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University in Hyderabad, India, 2015 and received a Master’s of Science degree in Sustainable Energy from the Technical University of Denmark in Copenhagen by early 2019. During this time, he also spent several months as a visiting scholar at the University of Illinois in the USA studying large-scale optimisation techniques in power systems. Gopi has also gained some professional experience: as a support engineer at Amazon in India and as an intern in market modelling and system development and later as a market modelling advisor at ENTSO-E in Brussels, Belgium. As Junior Operations Manager, he has a lot in mind: “As the sky is the limit, I want TSCNET to grow overall, and I want to be an impetus for that growth. I want to help to improve the quality of our offerings, and make our operational security coordination processes best known worldwide.”

In his spare time Gopi likes to play acoustic guitar, especially Bollywood songs. What he likes about Munich is its mixture of pulsating metropolis and “authentic Indian retreats” (those were his words!) – and that doesn’t miss the beer gardens!

TSCNET Services has two additional Junior Operations Managers: Michela Monaco and Gopi Jayasurian

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Vigour and wisdom – welcome, Kristóf and Ana!

08.07.2019

One male, the other female, one with decades of professional experience, the other with only three years in the profession at the beginning of her career – the two new hires in the Service Development Business Unit seem to be exemplarily diverse.

Let’s start with Kristóf Almási, the new Senior Business Implementation Manager. The 55-year-old Hungarian is well-known to many in our industry: For around 30 years he worked for one of our shareholders, the national electricity transmission system operator (TSO) MAVIR and its predecessor company. During this time, Kristóf also completed his MBA at the Technical University of Budapest, where he also earned an MSC in Electrical Power Engineering and a postgraduate MSC in Development Engineering. At MAVIR he has been involved in network operation planning since 2001, including network modelling and calculation, system protection, and international cooperation.

Assured of a good future
“For me, TSCNET is the company of the future that shapes the processes of the future,” says Kristóf, explaining why he moved here and thus abroad for the first time. In his function, he is primarily concerned with the implementation of new or changed tasks arising from the various requirements of the European institutions. The first task is the harmonisation of the system defence and restoration plans of the TSOs in cooperation with ENTSO-E. His experience and the fact that he knows the perspective of a TSO like the back of his hand are worth their weight in gold.

Is there anything else special about him? Definitely. He likes cycling, hiking, rowing and skiing – “with less and less intensity and more and more caution as I age,” he adds. He is a hobby musician, has been singing in a choir since his childhood and can even play the organ. And with one special aspect he has a real unique selling point: he is at least currently the only grandfather at TSCNET Services.

Don’t let the ball hit the ground
Ana Žanetić has been staffed as Business Analyst. In this function, the 28-year-old Croatian wants to continuously increase the efficiency of our company together with all her colleagues. After completing her Master’s in Electrical Power Engineering in 2015, Ana worked in planning and preparing the production of electrical generators and later as a software analyst for MES (Manufacturing Execution System) software and Business Intelligence Developer. At TSCNET, she can perfectly combine her professional interests in Power Systems and Business Analysis. And after work? Then she just loves to play volleyball (and is looking forward to some of her new colleagues on the court).

“A healthy mix of youthful vigor and traditional wisdom can give your business both stability and innovation,” writes the “D!gitalist Magazine”. We are delighted that with Kristóf and Ana we have brought on board just the right mix for Service Development.

TSCNET Services has welcomed Kristóf Almási and Ana Žanetić for the Service Development Business Unit

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Woman of the world with a we-feeling

14.05.2019

“This is the most important member of the team”, says Michael S. Hyatt, and as a successful manager and bestselling author on leadership and business growth, he should actually know. Who he is talking about? The Executive Assistant! Hyatt has developed a compelling idea about this role: “A good executive assistant is like an air-traffic controller for your whole life.” TSCNET Services in Munich now also has such a marvel: 39-year-old Rebecca Brauer, called Becky.

Born in London, she has more than 15 years of experience as an Executive Assistant and has worked for global organisations such as the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), Barclays Capital, Deloitte, and Citigroup in cities such as London, New York, Moscow, Berlin, and Brussels. She gained a wide range of international experience in different cultures and took on a variety of administrative and project management responsibilities, as well as co-ordinating on-site and off-site events.

In addition to important clients and other stakeholders, Becky on her travels around the globe fortunately also met her husband, a confirmed Bavarian, whom we owe her move to Germany (however, they got to know each other thousands of kilometres away, in California, but that’s a different story). Since New Year’s Day 2017, the two are the parents of an enchanting little daughter. “Becoming a mother has been the biggest challenge yet most rewarding role of my life,” Becky says. Now at TSCNET Services she wants to master both roles and “make my daughter proud”. With all her experience in culturally different and diverse environments she wants to support the management team and the whole company in their development and make them even stronger.

“I felt like I was going to be joining a team of highly skilled, multi-cultural individuals who all have a common aim to make TSCNET a thriving company within their industry and provide exceptional services to their clients,” reports Becky. And she quickly gained traction in her new position. “I felt that the people at TSCNET were very welcoming and had a real ‘family’ feel about the culture right away.”

As always in life, there will also be setbacks and hurdles to overcome. For such times, Michael S. Hyatt had a quote from Edward Everett Hale on the wall of his CEO office: “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something: and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” This by the way also goes very well with air-traffic controllers!

TSCNET Services has welcomed Rebecca Brauer as new Executive Assistant

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