Name: Hanne Binder
Title: Senior Energy Analyst & Board Member
Degree: MSc Engineering, Energy Technology
- Introduce yourself: Tell us your name, your age, your degree/university, and the fun fact that makes you unique!
My name is Hanne Binder, I am 31 and I hold a Master of Science in Engineering, Energy Technology. Before I decided to become an engineer, I applied for the education as saddle maker offered by the Danish military but didn’t get the job. I still enjoy making things of a broad variety of materials but am happy that I choose to become an engineer.
- What does a day in your life look like as a senior energy analyst and board member at Energinet?
My days revolves around the future energy system but that might be all that my days have in common. I work with many different tasks from analysis of the future energy systems to trying to make that future a reality through strategy development, innovation sprints, inspirational lectures, and cooperation with other transmission system operators around the world. As a board member I spend my time contributing to develop Energinet.
- What motivates and excites you the most about your career path and the leadership position you hold?
The importance of a successful and fast transition to sustainability motivates me every day. Combine that with being surrounded by great colleagues working for the same purpose, a daily environment where creativity and new ideas are welcome, and where the work I do makes a difference to the world of tomorrow.
- Share with us the biggest lessons you learned on your journey to where you are today?
Do not stop asking questions and be transparent about what you do not know. Nobody knows everything anyway. Figure out how you can contribute with the qualities you have. I have learned not to underestimate what can be learned by reading a very limited amount of fundamental theory and then practicing when it comes to skills as stage performance, tutoring, and creating psychological safety.
- Tell us about a (female) role model who inspired you to become the leader you are today, and how (s)he impacted you personally or professionally?
At Energinet there are many female leaders who has inspired and supported me from the first time I walked into the office. They have showed me what great leadership looks like and that truly caring for colleagues’ wellbeing and showing vulnerability is not in conflict with being a great leader – it is more likely a prerequisite. They gave me the opportunity to take greater responsibility and told me that I was ready for it or would learn it on the way countless times until I started believing them. Openly sharing how they have experienced uncertainty and doubt on the way to becoming leaders made me believe that uncertainty and doubt should not be a hinderance for trying.
- If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self, or to other young female students today, what would it be?
Remember that great opportunities are not only for those who top perform every single time. Every day is not an exam, and nobody thinks less of you if you are open about challenges or mistakes. Do not be afraid to take the opportunities that occur and find someone with whom you can share the doubts you have about which way to go.
- How do you see STEM education shaping the future?
I see the skills achieved through STEM education as vital to tackle important challenges as the climate crisis. Technology is advancing fast and STEM education is fundamental to harvest the full potential of the technological development to reach global sustainability.
- Why is it important for you to promote diversity and inclusion within STEM?
By promoting diversity and inclusion within STEM I hope to give more women the possibility to make their career choices based on what they are interested in and what motivates them. That choice should not be clouded by assumptions that STEM is more for one category of people than others.
- What steps has your company taken to promote a more diverse and inclusive workplace, and which one has been the most effective?
At Energinet diversity and inclusion are key to realizing our strategy. We need many different perspectives on the tasks ahead to find the best solutions. Our diversity policy has highly influenced the culture and management. I find the most effective steps to be the ones that addresses exactly what I can do differently every day to support diversity and secure inclusion.