Not being one to shy away from a challenge, Nav Dhunay has grown up with a deep-rooted desire for success. Undeniably, this was fostered at a young age, when he moved from India to Canada with his family – his father having only $25 to his name. Nav’s father was an extremely influential character, championing the idea that anything is possible and no goal is unachievable. This motive has been forever etched into Nav’s mindset, creating a relentless determination to achieve success in all that he does.
Technology has clearly always been a focus and passion. He already has three successful technology startups under his belt, notably ‘CanFlix’ a technology designed to form the basis of the globally recognized Netflix and ‘NavNet’, a pioneering control and home automation technology, which gives users the ability to control lights, music and thermostats remotely from a mobile device.
But success doesn’t come without challenges and, whether they manifest as indecision around expansion or taking an exit too early Nav says, “You learn a lot of lessons when starting your own business, many of which shape the person you become. Living through experiences that are challenging leaves you stronger and enables you to better understand yourself – your good points, as well as your bad. All my experiences have led me to today and I enjoy where I am. I use these lessons to my advantage in running companies. I admire quality, innovation and efficiency and I seek to create that in whatever I do.”
The former Silicon Valley entrepreneur has now turned his hand to revolutionizing technology in the oil patch at his Calgary-based company, PumpWELL Solutions. PumpWELL develops and patents cutting edge technology solutions in their 20,000 square foot ‘innovation lab’. Offering a unique mix of proprietary software combined with highly skilled technicians, one of their primary products enables real-time optimization of oil and gas wells which use artificial lift. They have seen increases in well output by up to 20% using their technology and clients are also able to minimize the requirement for onsite operators through PumpWELL taking on remote monitoring of all wells being optimized.
Since joining PumpWELL in 2012, Nav has brought about a complete transformation in the company culture as well as its processes. With passion for efficiency and innovation at its core, he ensured early on that the company adopted agile best practices, enabling it to respond quickly to customer needs and incorporated lean manufacturing practices that ensured that wastage of time and materials was minimized.
Nav also focused heavily on the organization’s culture encouraging team members to see themselves, not just as employees but as part of a team and integral to the company’s success and growth. Dhunay adds, “We promote innovation and collaboration in a way here, that’s not often seen in larger companies. Everyone can have their input in decision-making. We hold daily, 15-minute stand-up meetings where team members can collectively voice ideas and dissect problems in order to gain help and insight from the wider team. All of us have that entrepreneurial spirit – I want to nurture that”.
Without doubt, Nav’s Silicon Valley background and sheer determination is starting to change the way the oil patch think about the role of technology in the long term future of oil production. Speer-heading progressive approaches to leadership and creating a collaborative working environment where innovation and out-of-the-box thinking is encouraged, he is playing a significant role in bringing a tech revolution to the heart of the oil patch.
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