Tell us about your journey at Luxottica and where it has led you today.
I’ve worked for Luxottica for a year and 8 months. My time here began on 2 November 2017.
Coming from the world of automotive engineering, which has very little to do with the eyewear industry, I had to learn everything from scratch. Fortunately, the company and group I was part of gave me this great opportunity, allowing me to spend time in all the departments and organising a lengthy series of meetings with the company’s key figures. During these one-to-ones, I was able to ask lots of questions, clarifying my ideas about the structure of the company and understanding the roles and objectives of the various bodies that form Luxottica. After an initial period with the workshop department in Agordo, and 8 months spent at the Technical Office, I now work as the Metal Frames Manager for Italy, and have been doing so for more or less 3 months.
In my group, we handle the design and industrialisation of all metal glasses, transforming sketches or prototypes into 3D models ready to be industrialised. We draw up 2D designs of all the components that make up a pair of glasses and we design some of the equipment used to make them, with embossing, cutting and folding processes, as well as a wide variety of numerically-controlled touch-ups, carried out.
What is your motto?
There’s always a solution, you just have to find it.
How would you describe the Luxottica culture?
It’s a corporate culture that’s very firmly rooted in the local area that the company operates within. With almost 60 years of experience, guidance that comes directly from the President is followed by all employees. Over the years, it has become a shining example of welfare for many other Italian companies, and lots of multinationals as well. At the first Christmas dinner I attended, I was speechless when, as the President entered the room, almost 5000 guests stood up and a rapturous applause began. It made me realise the enormous gratitude that employees feel towards those who made Luxottica what it is.
What is the most challenging project you have worked on? And how did it turn out?
After just 6 months of work, I was asked to visit the Luxottica Tristar facility in Dongguan, with the aim of industrialising some rather complicated components, whose design process I had overseen. It was my first time in this part of the world, because in previous jobs I had worked a lot with Europe and the US, but never with the Far East.
After a few days of examining the dynamics of this new unit, very strong relationships were quickly established with colleagues and, day after day, we saw results. When I came back, I was very proud because I was able to bring the first samples of the components with me. As well as that, we had begun dealing with a significant number of the issues that we knew we would encounter during manufacture.
What advice would you give to university students or young professionals considering a career in engineering?
The best advice I can give is to be humble and inquisitive. As well as helping you to understand a lot of things, curiosity allows you to be passionate about a product, which is fundamental for achieving results.
Are there opportunities for you to mentor or help less experienced colleagues to develop? Do you think this is important?
Yes, we’re carrying out new studies and new design approaches with some young people, and it’s very exciting to see the outcomes. New ideas are conceived every day, and it’s my job to help them set their priorities and the best possible way to achieve, analyse and present the end results.
Are you able to balance your personal life with your professional goals at Luxottica?
I’ve always been very attached to the country I was born in and the mountains, and, until now, I had never been able to find the right work-life balance here. Luxottica is giving me this outstanding opportunity to do just that. My work and personal life are fairly well balanced. When I'm at work, I concentrate very hard and focus on completing the tasks that need to be done or those I aim to do, but at the same time when I leave work, I can detach myself enough from it to devote my time to other voluntary activities and supporting the local council.
If you had to choose just a few words to describe your experience with Luxottica to your friends, what would you say?
Try it out and you’ll see! I would never have thought there would be so much engineering behind a product like a pair of glasses.