Meet Chantelle Pirlo

Tell us about your career path so far and your current role.

My professional journey has been quite diverse. I began my career in high-end customer service, then spent many years in in both aviation and hospitality. In these roles I learnt the importance of safety, time management, accountability and the ability to engage and collaborate effectively across internal and external stakeholders.

I didn’t pursue university immediately. Instead, I wanted to travel and enjoy life before committing to further education. In my late 20s, I enrolled in a business degree, majoring in marketing. After I graduated, I immersed myself in corporate marketing, handling proposals, business development, and digital strategies across various industries including legal, finance, and engineering.

However, my passion lay in projects. I loved being part of something significant. Four years ago, I decided to pivot from marketing to project management. I obtained a certificate in project management, bridging my skills, and started as a junior project manager. My initial role involved water solutions.

Then, an exciting opportunity arose at Shell Energy to be project manager for the Rangebank Project — a 200-megawatt grid-scale battery installation located in Cranbourne, Victoria. My focus is on ensuring timely execution, minimising delays, and maintaining project integrity, working closely with our trading team, the Engineering Procurement Construction and our joint partner.

What is it like to work at Shell Energy and how would you describe our culture?

I genuinely appreciate my role and the camaraderie among my colleagues. At Shell Energy, we’re on an exciting journey, and I find myself closely aligned with that trajectory. The organisational culture here is dynamic and ever-evolving. We’re moving forward, adapting, and shaping our path.

What impact have you make, or do you hope to make in your role?

I find great fulfillment and satisfaction from spearheading projects that produce tangible and meaningful outcomes, fostering a culture of collaboration and shared success. As I navigate through the Rangebank battery project, my primary objective is to facilitate teams in efficiently achieving project milestones while ensuring alignment with overarching objectives. In addition to this, I am committed to promoting innovation and embracing technologies to optimise project efficiency and effectiveness. Furthermore, I am dedicated to cultivating a supportive environment that encourages continuous learning and professional growth among team members. By prioritising these objectives, my aim is not only to achieve successful project outcomes but also to leave a lasting, positive impact on project delivery within Shell Energy.

Over your career is there a particular achievement on moment you’re most proud?

For years, I contemplated this shift, particularly during the final stretch of my previous career. I had always leaned toward projects, yet I was apprehensive about making such a huge change.

However, I took the leap, switched careers, and today I’m immensely proud that I followed my instincts and made that change.

What is your take on flexible working and how does it support you?

Flexible working arrangements have been transformative for me. They’ve not only opened doors to opportunities but also allowed me to navigate a delicate balance between my career aspirations and family life. As a parent with young children, flexibility is essential. Balancing career growth and family responsibilities can be challenging, but flexible work arrangements empower me to pursue my ambitions without compromising either. Moreover, flexibility isn’t just a perk; it’s a powerful tool that dismantles traditional barriers and fosters a more inclusive workforce, especially for women.

Any advice for someone who wants to follow in your footsteps?

Take risks, back yourself and take the leap. Trust your instincts, even if it feels daunting. Growth often lies beyond our comfort zones. You won’t regret embracing new opportunities and charting your unique course.

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