Discovery Park’s Chief Operating Officer Mark Pettler talks about his whirlwind first few weeks in the job, the importance of being approximately right and his favourite route to relaxing when not looking after the day to day running of one of the UK’s leading science parks.
Tell us a little about what you love about Discovery Park.
I think there is a real buzz about the place due to the really positive attitude of both the DP team and the people working here. The Park is in a beautiful part of the country and has huge potential for growth in both existing buildings and new developments on a site with a huge and impressive footprint.
How have your first weeks in the job been?
It’s been genuinely really interesting. There is a lot to learn. Discovery Park is unusual in that the Park is pretty much self-sufficient in terms of utilities, especially now the Biomass plant is coming on line. This is a great benefit but also presents some complexity and challenges
What has impressed you so far about the place and the businesses here?
It’s great to have both large tenants such as Pfizer and Mylan and a diverse range of businesses which provide a vast range of services on site. It’s a bit like a business ecosystem which supports business growth and employment in Kent.
What’s been the main things in your in-tray so far?
A range of things from multi-million-pound projects, creating resilience across the Park and sorting out some site housekeeping like parking.
What can businesses expect more of over the next few months?
Improved quality and efficiency of essential contracted and ‘pay as you go’ services.
What changes are you hoping to introduce as part of your job?
Most of my career has been about transforming operations which has been across multiple sectors including healthcare. I will be striving to achieve operational excellence in everything we do. This will be an essential driver for achieving the full potential of Discovery Park
Tell us something that you’re most proud of in your career to date.
I worked for a large private health company which provided clinical services at patients’ homes ranging from chemotherapy treatments to recovery after intrusive surgery.
I helped transform the way that 700 clinicians across the UK were rostered and scheduled so that they could spend much more time treating patients rather than driving or completing paperwork. It was a real win, win for quality, efficiency and most importantly the motivation of the clinicians who were mostly nurses. I found personal satisfaction in doing a role which helped improve the quality of life for tens of thousands of people and reinvigorating the team.
What are your favourite sayings or quotes?
“It is better to be approximately right than accurately wrong.” Einstein
“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” Leonardo De Vinci
Anything else you’d like to say?
I am married to Sally with three grown up children and four demanding cats. When I am not working I find nothing more relaxing than open water swimming in a lake or the sea.
Visit the Our Team page for the full picture of the Discovery Park team.