When he’s not hard at work as Business Development Manager for Australia’s leading heavy earthmoving equipment rental provider Emeco Group, Ryan Finn is onsite connecting with our industry leaders. This month Ryan chatted with Thiess Mine Manager Tom Carroll.
As Mine Manager at Thiess’ Mt Owen operations, Tom Carroll is focused on fostering a work environment that creates opportunities, encourages innovation and celebrates diversity.
With more than 18 years’ experience in the mining industry, Tom has built a focused leadership style that empowers individuals and his team to consistently deliver.
He pairs operational expertise, having started his career as an operator, with his unwavering work ethic, built on his desire to continually outperform.
From first job to now
At the age of 16, Tom accepted his first job cleaning the kitchen at his local pub in Orange, New South Wales.
In year 10, he completed work experience with the team at Mount Thorley Warkworth mine where he learnt of the different career opportunities available within the industry. He continued to work across various mining roles, including truck driving and mill relining, prior to starting university.
While studying his Bachelor of Mining Engineering at the University of Wollongong, Tom furthered his coal mining experience working underground for a number of contracting companies in the Illawarra region and Western Australia.
On the job
Tom’s typical workday involves management meetings, pit tours and inspections, administration tasks and providing leadership to his team to ensure they maintain a safe and effective working environment.
Tom is focused on enabling his team to be exceptional and have fun at work. He believes regular face-to-face interaction is critical to ensuring safe and productive operations.
Tom is inspired by his team’s commitment to continue to grow and develop personally and professionally.
Keys to success
Tom’s advice for people wanting to enter the mining industry and follow a similar career path to his is to continue to challenge yourself. He believes in pushing yourself to be the best leader that you can and along the way remain consistent, persistent and fair. He also recommends building a strong foundation of knowledge, mastering your people skills and setting big goals.
Tom’s mindset on failure is that it’s an important step along the way to success. He believes we all have failures and should see them as opportunities to fine-tune our attention to detail and develop processes to move forward and prevent the same failure from occurring again.
Tom also believes mentors are vital for personal development and career progression. He recommends finding the person you want to emulate and to start becoming them through your actions and intentions. He also believes that a good mentor helps guide you on whatever path you are on whilst being there for support and to sound ideas off. Tom currently acts as a mentor for the AusIMM Women in Mining Network as a way of giving back to the community.
Tom says it’s important to have balance and routine. He believes in eating healthy, exercising regularly and enjoying the things you love. For Tom that’s as simple as a game of touch football with mates, spending time with the family and riding motorbikes with his son.
What’s next for Tom Carroll?
Tom loves the expression “there is a role in your life for a time in your life”. For him at this point of time that’s being the best mine manager that he can be.