Regional Senior Vice President Dean Gehring in his own words, in the third of a four-part series.
I grew up on a farm in Idaho, which meant I was around different types of heavy equipment. I think that early exposure to mechanical equipment got me interested in engineering, which I eventually pursued at school.
While studying mechanical engineering, I had the opportunity to take a few mining classes. Those initial mining classes piqued my interest in the industry and led me to working as a summer intern for a few mines, including Newmont’s Carlin operation back in 1989. I completed my mining engineering degree and later a Master’s degree in project management. I just fell in love with the industry, and have been in it for over 25 years now.
Since coming to mining, I have had many great opportunities – from working as a miner in a small underground silver mine to managing a small copper/gold surface mine in Nevada, and to working at the world’s largest gold producing mine in Indonesia. I have been fortunate to experience many different cultures and to implement emerging technologies. The full spectrum of those experiences provides an important foundation for me in my role with Newmont today.
I came back to Newmont last summer. While my job is technically Regional Senior Vice President, South America, I like to say I am more of a translator. I help translate “business language,” so that everyone can clearly understand and support Newmont’s strategy, objectives and core values in ways that set our people up for success.
How do you translate Newmont’s values of Safety, Integrity, Inclusion, Sustainability and Responsibility? How do you reinforce a collaborative environment? How do you work with other cultures and meet new people?
Simply put, everyone at Newmont works with people. Everything we do requires human interaction, including when we work in and around communities. Those interactions, those relationships directly impact people. That’s why our core values are so important. It comes down to human relationships every day.
“Success comes down to human relationships every day.”
Additionally, when employees are proud, they are engaged – which for me is a key enabler of success. Community engagement is another metric. Do our host communities support what we do? Do they agree with our approach to safety and how we care for people? Do they respect how we care for the environment? Those are all things you can measure. Partnering with our host communities to deliver shared value is critical to our success.
Engaged employees also help everyone stay focused on continued improvement. In South America I see a lot of improvement opportunities as part of our Full Potential program, including incorporating innovative mining technologies, to help us improve safety and efficiency.
I’ve seen a lot since that summer job back at Carlin. But I’ve never seen the type of commitment and dedication to doing good work that I see at Newmont. At the end of the day, it’s energizing to work in such a committed, values-based environment.