An-Magritt Tinlund Ryste will never forget the first time she went aboard an oil rig with the KONGSBERG logo on her back.
She started her career in Kongsberg Maritime on the apprenticeship programme operated by the Norwegian Shipowners Association. This gave her the opportunity to take part in exciting projects across national borders. She now works as the programme manager for the autonomy initiative in Kongsberg Maritime.
TASKS: I work in Kongsberg Maritime (KM) as project manager in the Technology division, where I head up a team and have four direct reports. We work on innovation projects, looking at technological solutions such as zero-emissions and fully-autonomous car ferries. I am also programme manager for KM’s autonomy initiative.
This involves vessels that are over 15 metres in length, what we call Maritime Autonomous Service Ships (MASS), such as the Yara Birkeland. These vessels will operate as part of conventional marine traffic. My current task is to run the development programme. This means setting up the development initiatives that we need so that our products can be put on board to operate an unmanned vessel.
We have noticed that our clients’ needs have changed. They now focus not only the vessel itself, but also on making the entire logistics chain greener. My role in all this is to drive forward these development processes, identify what we need to develop in terms of our existing product portfolios, and ensure that the development processes match our delivery obligations.
An-Magritt Ryste speaking at the Norwegian Ocean Summit.
BACKGROUND: I have a degree in civil engineering (marine technology) from NTNU, and I specialise in subsea production. However, I realised early on that I did not want to work as a typical engineer, since this tends to involve a lot of calculations and analyses.
I thought that it was more interesting to work with engineering methods and risk management. I was initially employed by KONGSBERG as a maritime apprentice through a trainee programme operated by the Norwegian Shipowners Association. It is a two-year manager development programme in the maritime cluster.
It really allowed me to see the full spectrum of the maritime cluster, and to work with a number of different projects at an international level.
TOOLS: The tools I use most are probably PowerPoint, reporting and communication. Communication is particularly important when we are working on new projects. I often hold presentations for clients, but also for management teams.
When you are as big as we are, it is important to communicate that we work as a single KONGSBERG unit, across business areas and countries. Personality-wise, my key tool is probably my curiosity.
I feel that I have so much to learn from other people, and I really enjoy working in a team. I think that you get the best solutions when you work together.
OBJECTIVES: My goal is for KONGSBERG to maximise its potential and for us to adopt a future-orientated position. Kongsberg Maritime is a leader in the field of autonomy.
We are able to pull together on a solution, drawing on the best units, which allows us to make the best use of the group’s expertise as a whole. It is also important for us to know more about what expertise each of our companies actually possesses.
That is one of my objectives. I want us to succeed with our first vessel, the Yara Birkeland. Not succeeding is just not an option.
BEST WORK MEMORY: Shortly after I had graduated, I was invited on a trip to one of our plants in China. Going aboard the first oil rig when it was moored at the quayside, fully equipped and ready to do my job, wearing overalls bearing the Kongsberg logo — that was a powerful experience.
It was also a special feeling to go aboard and hear the crew say ‘Here come the people from Kongsberg. They can fix anything’. It really makes you realise that what we deliver is important, as well as giving you the opportunity to meet the client face-to-face and see the product in action.
Another special moment was when I got to give a presentation at KONGSBERG Executive Management Meeting and explain what we are working on in front of the entire Kongsberg Group.
HIDDEN TALENTS: I would say that I am really practical. I am pretty good with a jigsaw, and I could build a garage. Apart from that, I also like to do the occasional bit of stand-up comedy. I wouldn’t exactly say that I’m a clown, but I don’t like to take myself too seriously, especially when I’m with people who I know really well. I can be a little bit mischievous sometimes, and I like having fun.