The power of one

Doing a deal on a multi-million dollar ocean-going supply ship would seem like a big thing to most people.

But Megan, a Category Management Specialist for BHP's Petroleum business, simply describes the contract as “cool”.

She says that’s because compared to previous diesel-only vessels, this one cuts fuel consumption by approximately 15 per cent, reduces pollution and is cheaper to run day-to-day.

As the daughter of a Vietnam veteran who grew up in Phoenix, Arizona she explained that she was raised to have great respect for the people and things around her.

“So BHP and I are a great fit,” she said.

Megan began with BHP in 2012 as an intern and then joined the Supply Graduate Program before moving into Category Management.

“My experience as a graduate exposed me to everything from being in a warehouse to living and working on two off-shore oil platforms,” she said.

“I do a bit of recruiting as part of my job and I always say to graduates that understanding a company’s Charter Values is really important because it sets the tone for the culture and the type of people you’ll be working with.”

She calls it “a golden thread,” that runs through the organisation.

“In particular, the Sustainability, Integrity and Respect values of BHP hit home for me.”

Megan saw a unique opportunity when a purchase deal for a diesel powered platform supply vessel (PSV) couldn’t be filled by the supplier.

Through her research, she discovered the supplier also made an energy-optimised vessel which was slightly more expensive.

She knew that would make getting a sign off tough.

“But I’m a strong believer in the value of long-term supplier relationships,” Megan said.

Because the supplier couldn’t fulfill what they had promised, she set about negotiating a better deal.

“That, plus the market downturn at the time meant we were able to get a lot more and negotiate much better terms.”

She says it’s important to respect the people you are negotiating with.

“You have to do it in a realistic way, not a cut throat approach.”

Her strategy on the deal was successful and it got the tick from her boss.

It resulted in the purchase of a hybrid diesel electric PSV that is bigger, faster, cheaper and better for the environment as it uses 15 per cent less diesel.

Her approach is a great reminder of the impact one person can have on productivity and efficiency, not just within the business, but on the environment generally.

Megan believes BHP can lead the way in many areas.

“Through work I am a member of the Community Involvement Committee and on the Employee Social Investment Committee.”

On top of the work those committees do for BHP, the company has a matched giving program that matches all personal employee donations made to non-profits and community organizations.”

“It is amazing how much we give,” she said.

She believes that it is just another reflection of the “golden thread” that runs through BHP.