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Installation of cable handling equipment on service ship in Taiwan: impressions of Laimonas from an exotic mission

We put a lot of effort into continuous improvement and motivation of employees. New experiences, business trips and professional challenges are an integral part of everyday life of PASSER SIDC employees. Laimonas, Design engineer of our company, shares his experiences and impressions from a distant project in Taiwan: installation of cable handling equipment on service ship, where our team supervises cable management systems.

– Is this your first project implemented in a foreign country?

Yes, this is the first project implemented abroad, where I participated physically, not remotely. I am the Design engineer, so I mostly work in an office. However, this time I had to leave the office and work on the project “live”. We spent 34 days in Taiwan.

– Have you felt the difference, i.e., how the work in Lithuania differs from work in this faraway country?

To tell the truth, we did not feel any great difference at work in Taiwan. In fact, work specifics are the same all around the world, so we did not face any problems in this respect.

– How long did it take you to get to Taiwan? Did you have time to learn a bit about the culture of this exotic country?  

The duration of the trip depends on many factors. For instance, our trip to Taiwan lasted for about 40 hours, but from Taiwan to Lithuania – only about 24 hours. 

We wanted to get to know the country better, but the pandemic led to the tightening of the quarantine restrictions nationwide and all tourist places were closed. Anyway, we did not give up and went to explore the city on foot in the evenings. Cities in Taiwan are very big and busy, local people are very friendly. The only drawback is that it is quite difficult to communicate, as only a small part of the population of this country speaks English.

– Was your trip more difficult due to the pandemic? What measures had to be taken to have a safe business trip to the destination and then back home?

Before our flight to Taiwan, we had to be tested for COVID-19, and the results of the test had to be valid for 72 hours before arrival in the country. Once we got to Taiwan, we had to register and stay in quarantine. Quarantine lasted 14 days without any exceptions or exemptions allowing to shorten the period.

 – What did surprise you most about the local work culture? Was it different in any way from the Lithuanian work culture?

I had an opportunity to work with the local people and I liked their work ethics immensely. All you need to do is to explain well to the workers once how the work needs to be done. They try to do it in several places and then start working very quickly and in a well-organised manner. This allowed us to save much time.

 – What event was the most memorable to you during the business trip in Taiwan?

The difference of the city before quarantine and once quarantine restrictions were put in place. When we arrived in Taipei, where we had to stay in quarantine, we saw a busy and noisy city. It seemed that people were no aware of the pandemic at all. And then, a few weeks later, the pandemic situation got worse and quarantine restrictions were tightened. Then it seemed that there were no more people in the city, the streets were empty, and everything was closed. It was a very spectacular view of the city with a population of 2.8 million. People took the quarantine restrictions very seriously and with great responsibility. This shows that Taiwanese have a well-developed sense of responsibility and discipline.

– What is your impression of Taiwan? How are the living conditions and habits of the local people different from the ones in Lithuania?

Speaking of the differences in prices, the only difference is in the prices of household goods, which are cheaper in Taiwan than in Lithuania.

As Taiwan is a densely populated small country, their apartments and houses are built very close to one another. Apartments and houses look tidy, families live in prosperity. The cities are clean and tidy, you can see many beautiful and modern buildings, ancient temples, visit the mountains and many other places of interest.

Definitely, this business trip is unforgettable. I am beyond happy that my company gave me an opportunity to gain some experience in such an exotic country. 

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