Mark Lowman: transforming operations through digitisation

Mark Lowman, Vice President of Operations at McDermott, discusses the impact of COVID-19 in the oil and gas industry

Mark Lowman
McDermott

Vice President of Operations

Mark Lowman is Vice President of Operations at McDermott. Having spent his early career as a Submariner in the Royal Navy, Lowman worked his way through the ranks to advance to Lieutenant Commander, before spending a further four years with the Royal Australian Navy. In 2000, Lowman left the Navy and joined the oil and gas industry and, over the next few years, gained experience as a Project Manager delivering projects in the Subsea, Offshore and Onshore business segments. 

In 2012, he joined McDermott to oversee company fabrication operations in Asia and to manage the Batam Fabrication yard. Two years later, he stepped into his current role as Vice President of Operations and is now based in Houston, Texas. “I loved my career with the Royal Navy, but I always knew I was going to move jobs eventually because there comes a time when you can no longer serve at sea,” explains Lowman. He studied at Deakin University and was awarded an MBA in Law, Finance, Human Resources, Economics and Marketing in 2001. He points to that experience as vital in providing a network of like-minded individuals. “That programme had a big influence on me as I got introduced to a number of senior executives from other companies and those conversations about opportunities really drove me to switch my career.”

Pointing to his military background, Lowman believes it has laid the foundation for him to succeed in a leadership role in the oil and gas industry. “With military leadership, you get emergency and crisis training which has helped with how I’ve dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic,” he explains. “My style is that I always try and be inclusive with employees and make sure they’re engaged. I think having open dialogue is vital, being open and having transparent conversations both internally and externally is essential to success as a leader.”

Lowman points to other qualities that make a great leader. “Building that trust to inspire and drive teams is important because encouraging people to do things they necessarily might not do for the good for the team is an invaluable skill,” says Lowman. “Life is full of changes and challenges, so being flexible and helping lead people through change by outlining what the benefits are is what also makes a good leader. Behaving like a leader and having that presence is also key.”

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Digital disruption is very likely to upend the way we operate

Mark Lowman | Vice President of Operations

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