Handaijani Schiks

General Manager, Project Management & Engineering, Asset Management Services, Wärtsilä Marine Business

Drunen, The Netherlands

16 years at Wärtsilä

Originally from The Netherlands



Building ever greater things together

At the start of her career, Handaijani Schiks sailed for five years, starting as a Maritime Officer working in the engine room and on the bridge. The last two voyages she served as a Chief Officer. She continued her maritime journey from a life at sea to a life ashore, where Wärtsilä succeeded to get her on-board.

Now, 16 years later, Handaijani is working as a General Manager, Project Management and Engineering. “At the moment, I’m responsible for projects, specialising in propulsion services. Our team is also dealing with large multi-portfolio projects combining propulsion for example with engines as well as electrical and automation products,” she tells.

Before this position, Handaijani has been working in various jobs starting as a Sales Support Engineer for new build controllable pitch propellers, growing into a team leader and then becoming a Manager, Operations responsible for the deliveries of all controllable pitch propeller systems in the Drunen factory.

She enjoys working with passionate people who have crossed her inspiring learning path, “I’ve been given the opportunity to build great things with a team of enthusiastic people. That keeps me motivated.”

Known as someone who motivates people, Handaijani enjoys developing teams and focuses on finding each person’s talents. “I believe when people use their strengths and can develop those, they bring the best results for the company and customers,” she says.

And while working as an Operations Manager in Drunen, she scaled up the capacity of the factory without any large investments – mainly relying on these strengths of her colleagues and herself. “The machine operators were able to share their great ideas and insights on how to work more efficiently. My job was then to facilitate and mature their proposals – and in the end, operators felt committed to the new system,” Handaijani tells. “In this learning experience, I understood that good solutions can also start on the work floor. And as an enabler, I had a valuable role in the process.”

Nowadays, Handaijani still practises this learning, and she has led the Project Centre to become a more mature organisation. “We have large and challenging projects, which are executed by experienced and motivated people, who are eager to fulfil the customer’s requirements. By listening to our customers, the best ideas for new product innovations and services come from our technical team themselves.”

Handaijani’s team and the passionate people around keep her energised at the office and in her free time, she enjoys being outdoors with her husband and three children. As a family, they travel a lot exploring the world together.

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