BURGER, David

David Burger image Degree

Bachelor Engineering (Electrical)

Graduation year

1979

Current position

Project Manager

Employer

Tyco Projects

What are some of your career highlights?

Adopting the approach of diversity, travel and effectively following the trail of opportunity, has meant that my career episodes have ranged from two to five year engagements.

Many of the companies I have worked for include blue chips and those at cutting edge developments of technology, manufacturing and burgeoning opportunities.

Some of the key projects I have been closely involved with include:

  • AMPTS Mobile system phase 1 deployment with Parramatta model and 1st site in North Sydney.
  • Novatel Mobile telephone deployment and local sourcing.
  • Defence Security High Command networks.
  • Fox studios sound stage design and entertainment precinct infrastructure support to concessions
  • Managed a forensic investigation and affidavits into a high value fraud involving an international digital voice network for a blue chip company.
  • Designed and managed the first AV upgrade of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.
  • Project managed the deployment of a $48M SAP Finance and Asset Management business system.
  • Program managed the security alert readiness awareness and risk avoidance program for Sydney Trains.
  • Project managed the design and deployment of 206 HD CCTV cameras across 40 regional NSW trains stations.
  • Project managed the design and deployment of a 4K CCTV monitored incident detection system for a Sydney Airport tunnel.

Describe the most enjoyable and challenging aspects of your job:

The key aspects of challenges given the diversity, both geographically and industry forced key learnings in problem solving approaches, dealing with corporate bullies and victims of bullying.

While my career history is many and varied, so many things remain constant like making team members accountable, creating a proactive and supportive environment for my team, and sadly dealing with that bully that seems to always reside in every business.

Oddly, I’ve learned that it is not technological advances that are challenging us, as in reality the developments are still very incremental, but it is the human factors and human failings that present the biggest challenge, given that few people these days have any comprehension of consequential thought.

My most enjoyable moments include:

  • Achieving my Chartered Professional Engineer accreditation
  • Being nominated and receiving Fellow grade membership of Engineers Australia
  • Chairing the IEEE History Committee (New Jersey) and reporting to the IEEE Board of Directors – in a volunteer role
  • Being able to drive past my previous projects, seeing them completed and in operation

What are your strongest memories while you were studying at Federation University Australia?

No disrespect to Ballarat, but the cold and damp of my student accommodation really inspired me to a warmer climate.

The other memory I hold close is that of the late Colin Kline, who ultimately turned from mentor to friend.

Watching Steve Bracks chair the student union every day, and eventually finding out where a career could develop from his Degree in general studies.

Do you have any advice about life after study to pass on to current students?

The following key advice should be regarded as a priority, ie getting to this has probably cost me dearly in the long term:

  • Embrace every opportunity, irrespective if the pay is rubbish
  • Never remain silent when being bullied, and never give in. There will be channels where your pen is greater than any grandstanding bully.
  • Setup a Superannuation account of your own at your first job, and manage it monthly like a bank account. Recognise when you can contribute additional funds and take action.
  • Own shares.
  • Take a Kiersey.com personality profile, acknowledge your weakness and strengths and ONLY seek work in your strength areas.
  • Volunteer and give back something to your profession.

In one sentence what words of wisdom would you pass on to students

Work smart and not hard, plan in detail and acknowledge risks.