Employee Spotlight on Michael Gentile
This month’s blog post marks the first installment of DPM’s Employee Spotlight. We wanted to shed more light on who are the amazing employees that make up DPM.
For our first ever Employee Spotlight, we interviewed Michael Gentile who was recently promoted to Project Director at DPM.
Michael has over eight years of experience in the power and lighting industry. Michael began at DPM as a co-op student and has risen through the company as a Designer, Team Lead, Senior Team Lead to Project Supervisor. His time at DPM has given him experience in capital projects, reactive/emergency projects, new customer connections, planning for asset management, station projects, and street light design. As a Director with DPM Energy, he is responsible for the overall management of projects, training and guiding supervisors/designers, quality control and utility coordination.
We sat down with Michael to learn a little more about him.
- When did you start working at DPM?
A: January 2011 as a college student
- What has been your favorite project to work on and why?
A: The Bentway. * Never would have thought so many people would hang out under a highway. I’ve seen people working under there, biking, walking their dogs. It has turned into a huge success for many people to enjoy.
*The Bentway is a unique and innovative public space that transforms 1.75km underneath Toronto’s Gardiner Expressway into a new gathering place for our city’s growing population. DPM has been working on the project since the beginning, in fact, Michael did an overnight site check in the middle of the winter to ensure all of the lights we designed were properly placed by the contractor*
- If you could pick one theme for DPM to turn into a book about the company, what would it be?
A: It would either be a book about our projects or our culture. Those are the two main things that define us.
- What advice do you have for new employees at DPM?
A: Don’t be shy. Don’t be scared to voice your opinion or ask questions when you don’t know something. Being eager is great, share your two cents and it’s okay to be wrong.
- What three words would you use to describe DPM?
A: Family, Opportunity, Growth.
- What would the name of your autobiography of your life?
- Do you have an office nickname?
A: No, but all of my friends from high school call me Gents because of my last name.
- If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do?
A: I have always said if I won the lottery, the first thing I would do was walk into a Ferrari dealership and buy a car on the spot. *Gestures to model car on shelf* I am a huge Ferrari fan, that’s why I have a car on in my office.
- How do you define success?
A: By feeling rewarded by our client’s happiness. I see it as success when clients tell us that we went above and beyond the job, that they are really satisfied by the result and appreciate what we have done for them. Client satisfaction is success.
- What would people never guess that you do in your role?
A: That I am an avid reader of BlogTo, as well as other news about the City of Toronto. I like reading about the projects we worked on, or upcoming ones that we could get involved in. I always send them to other staff, so they are aware of the opportunities and we can be a part of the ever-changing city work.
- If you weren’t working at DPM, what would you do for a career?
A: I would probably be working for a utility. My schooling translates well to that and it has always been an area of interest.
- What was your first concert?
A: My first concert was OVO Fest in 2015, and I saw my second concert that same year, which was Lil Wayne. Those are the only two concerts I’ve seen, I am not a huge concert goer as I would rather see a comedy show.
- What do you like most about your role?
A: As a Director, I get to train the Supervisors and Designers at DPM. I enjoy being able to support them.
- What Core 4* item resonates the most with you and why?
A: “How will we succeed” really resonates with me, as we get to be a part of a lot of projects that greatly impact the City and people. The specific line in that Core Four item is: “Growth is in our DNA”: Growth has been in my DNA at DPM, in 8 years I have gone from a college student to Project Director. As the company has grown, I have grown along with it.
*To learn more about our Core 4, please check out March’s Blog Post: https://dpmenergy.com/our-core-4/
- If you could witness one historical event, what would you want to see?
A: I wish I could have seen the Toronto Maple Leafs win the Stanley Cup in 1967.
- What do you like to do in your spare time?
A: School work* or watch soccer.
* Michael is currently enrolled part-time at McMaster University in Hamilton in pursuit of an engineering degree.
- What trends do you see happening in the industry?
A: I’m learning in school that in my life time the current distribution system we have will completely change. The grids are getting smaller and will become more localized. The LDC’s (Local Distribution Companies) will shrink in size to deal with more local areas and I believe our role as a company will have to evolve to accommodate for this change.
- If you could have dinner with one person, living or dead, who would it be and why?
A: There’s three: Andrea Pirlo (Italian former professional footballer), Rory Mcllroy (Irish professional golfer), and Michael Schumacher (retired German professional racing driver who raced in Formula One). All three of them have been extremely successful in their respective professions. I would want to know how they conditioned themselves to win and not bend to the extreme pressure they faced. In general, I really enjoy soccer, golf and Formula one. I would also want to get some tips to personally improve in my own practice of the sports.
- If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?
A: Swimming. I don’t know how to swim, and that has held me back from participating in some activities. That would be the most practical thing that I could learn to do in my life.
- Since DPM doesn’t stand for anything, what would you make it an acronym for?
A: Dependable Persistent Managers
A big thank you to Michael for taking the time for an interview. We hope this helped you get to know our newest Director a little better!