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An Interview with Tan Fie Chen – Winner of the Most Promising Professional of the Year (Female) 2019

Tan Fie Chan has a pro-active attitude that makes her outstanding in her projects

Engineering is a puzzle

Tan Fie Chen shows how to level up

For Tan Fie Chen, the winner of the SJ Promising Professional of the Year 2019 (Female), engineering is a mind game. Says the Principal Engineer (C&S) with KTP Consultants: “We face plenty of challenges throughout the whole cycle of any project. It’s like solving technical, human or environmental challenges – which can be for a long period of time. But it is very satisfying when you solve them.”

Fie Chen has seen her fair share of engineering challenges as she has been with KTP for three years. She graduated from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in engineering, and obtained her Professional Engineer recognition last year, at age 32. She has won recognition from clients like the Land Transport Authority as well as Samsung, an MNC contractor. “The key is providing quality service so that clients would trust us – and ultimately we have to work as a team,” she says. “And if we can’t satisfy the client’s request we need to advise them what is a possible timeline to achieve good deliverables.”

She is happy to win as the award means “good recognition” from the company.  Fie Chen is modest about being seen as a leader, saying she is still learning from her superiors who are doing their best to provide high quality work. “After all, good working attitude is important regardless of any verbal or written appreciation from clients,” she says. “We need to be always humble and sincere.”

Increasingly, as more women enter engineering, both men and women have equally important roles in leadership, so she does not sense any difference in treatment. “Just be confident, be technically strong and remain level-headed,” is her hard-headed advice to young female engineers.  As for those who also want to stand out as a promising professional, Fie Chen has this tip: “Embrace challenges as if you are solving puzzles. I believe that what does not kill us can make us stronger.”

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