About Honey Duan
Honey joined Vattenfall in January 2019 as an Originator with a primary focus on gas. She graduated with a Masters in Physics from the University of Cambridge, UK, and also spent a year in a research laboratory at Harvard University.
“After graduating, my career saw me gain experience in different parts of the energy industry as well as the steel sector. I also worked in different countries all over the world, including Brazil, before returning to Germany after my husband started a new job here. I was on maternity leave after having my second child when a friend suggested I considered applying to Vattenfall as he said it was a good employer and I had an energy background.
Being an originator is a very commercial role which is quite far removed from my academic background in physics, but the numeracy and logical thinking that my job requires definitely draws on certain aspects of my degree!
My role is to develop non-standard energy products. If you wanted to make a sandwich, for instance, you would go to a shop and buy a loaf of bread and a block of cheese and so on, but you could not buy just two slices of bread or a single slice of cheese! As an originator I look to source the different ingredients to put together a deal to give the buyer exactly what they want in terms of energy.
Dynamic and international
You have to be adaptable, learn quickly and also be able to bounce back from things not working out. Not every deal you work on will be successful so you have to have patience and resilience. But every day is different and every deal I work on is different. I also get to spend time a lot of time on the trading floor which I love – it’s dynamic, stimulating and very international!
With two small kids, the flexibility I have at work is really valuable to me and the nature of my job means I am not necessarily tied to my desk at set hours. If I occasionally need to leave work early to do the nursery pick-up, there are no sideways glances from colleagues! To have the trust from the management and your peers to be able to do that is great.
Wherever I’ve worked in the world I’ve always made sure I join an orchestra as I’m a keen musician and play the violin, viola and piano – it’s really important for me to have a focus other than work and family.”