Big, extravagant, and beautifully complex – Andrea’s first six months at Railnova

Post by Andrea van Beek-Nagy, Customer Succes Manager at Railnova
December 1, 2022

It’s already been six months since I joined Railnova! Like with every new start, everything feels daunting. The unknown is always a bit scary.

On my first day came, I received my onboarding to-do list. I have never had such a well-defined onboarding as this one before. I received an entire checklist filled with defined to-dos and clear instructions. My very first little successes were when I started to tick those to-do’s off as “complete”. It was such an uplifting feeling!

Even if I was a bit overwhelmed with all the information coming my way sometimes, this checklist helped me to remain organised and prevented me from becoming lost or possibly overlooking something important.

My previous job was already in the railway sector. I knew some of the suppliers, customers and maintainers already. The different train and locomotive types, as well as their spare parts, were familiar to me. I was also used to working with software and data, but I had no idea I only scratched the surface back then!

My introduction to the Railnova platform and its functionalities left me speechless. I knew that you could do a lot with it, but I had no idea it was SOOO big, SOOO extravagant, and SOOO beautifully complex. What you can achieve using data is so much more than I anticipated. A whole new world opened up to me. I started to learn more and more about the functionalities of the platform and was trained by the best of the best!

My inaugural 200 days brought some big realisations. Let me share them with you.

With each answered question, ten more arise

Yep, the railway industry is very complex, as trains and locomotives are intricate machinery. There is so much to learn, and so much is still unknown. The same applies when exploring the tech side of this industry with Railnova. And how to learn so much in so little time? Ask, read, ask, read and ask and read. The more I learned, the more questions popped up. With each question answered, more and more arose. I guess you get caught up in this knowledge fever. Once you go rail, you never go back again!

Atomic habits: learning, unlearning, relearning

Throughout the last few years, I met stakeholders in the railway industry who showed me around this world and taught me all about it. I listened to their stories and heard about their day-to-day challenges. Of course, this automatically formed an atomic habit: thinking this is the way. But is it really? After joining Railnova, I quickly realised it doesn’t necessarily have to be. It can be a healthy mix of all the ways, with an open mind and willingness. Learning, unlearning, and relearning is my new mantra.

How powerful asynchronous communication is

I was introduced to Railnova’s asynchronous way of written communication. No more weekly status update meetings with ten people invited! No more over-jammed phone lines from early morning till late evening! I learned that this asynchronous communication primes for “deep work” without distraction to become productive.

I love the idea that everything is written, so when a new starter like me joins the team, the newcomer can just scroll through previously handled cases and learn from the experience and expertise of others without having to ask the same questions over and over again.

I surely still have a lot to learn from my colleagues and the industry. So many things to be learned cross my mind. One thing that keeps amazing me is how extraordinarily talented, experienced, and driven my colleagues are and how happy I am to learn from them each day. I’m excited to see what is waiting for me over the coming months and years!

What more could I wish for? Maybe just one teeny-tiny thing: may the data be with me!

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