Engineering success is about solving customer challenges together

Interview | April 11, 2023

Shanthala Kamath from ABB’s Measurement & Analytics is an accomplished instrumentation engineer who has worked for ABB for 25 years. We talked to her about her career in STEM and engineering.

“When I embarked on my career in the 1990s, engineering was already considered a good profession for women in my native India. I was fortunate to have a positive and nurturing work environment as well as supportive colleagues early in my career. This allowed me to find my passion in my chosen profession,” Shanthala Kamath says.

For her, it all started in high school.

“I was immensely interested in sciences and that was the beginning of my fascinating adventure in engineering.”

Thinking back to the start of her journey, she remembers distinctly all the people she admired at the time.

“Although I have had several inspiring role models, my parents have been a big influence and everlasting role models for me. My father taught me integrity and simplicity. From my mother, I learned creativity, problem-solving, and compassion.”

To succeed in the STEM field, Shanthala soon found that a combination of problem-solving skills and the ability to collaborate with other functions was required. She had plenty of both and was able to thrive professionally. 

Developing her first product at ABB was an experience that shaped her career. 

“It was an industrial hand-held communicator model, the now obsolete STT04. It helped our customers configure both HART and Digital FSK field devices. It was released in 1998.” 

She says that the excitement of designing a product and seeing it being used by customers was enormous. 

“To this day, I remember the failures and learnings, the colleagues who collaborated with me, and my first invention. This first experience has motivated and empowered me over the years.”

Mentoring as a two-way street

When she thinks about working in ABB’s Measurement & Analytics division, Business Line Instrumentation, what comes to mind are all the learning opportunities, challenging projects, innovative products, and most importantly – great colleagues. 

“I treasure the respect and care we show for each other. This creates a positive work environment where people of diverse skills can collaborate. Together, we have a common goal – to create solutions that make a difference across industries.”

That is why of all ABB values, "Collaboration" appeals to her the most. 

“I believe that there’s no limit to what we can achieve in ABB when we collaborate and use our combined strengths.”

Over the years, she has learned from others around her about technology, communication, collaboration, and work ethics. 

“I am still learning, and, at the same time, I use mentoring opportunities to share my experience. I have mentored many people in my professional and social circles, formally and informally.” 

No barriers

After 25 years at ABB, Shanthala says that for anyone with a passion for science and technology, an analytical mind and problem-solving skills, engineering and technology is a fulfilling career choice. 

“Gender is not a barrier. Look around and you will see many female engineers excelling in their profession and feeling a sense of accomplishment and pride in what they do.”  

Today, what brings her the most joy and satisfaction is working together with colleagues and customers to solve customer challenges.

“To me, this is what engineering success is about. When I look back at my 25 years of service, these are the moments I am most proud of.”


About Shanthala Kamath

Shanthala Kamath is an R&D Corporate Executive Engineer in ABB's Measurement & Analytics. She is an accomplished instrumentation engineer with main area of expertise in industrial communications. Shanthala has a Bachelor’s Degree in Instrumentation Technology Engineering from the University of Mysore, India. She started her career at Robert Bosch GmbH where she worked for two years. Thereafter, Shanthala has been working in the area of Industrial Instrumentation in ABB USA in Wickliffe Ohio (1996-2011), ABB India in Bangalore (2011-2019), and again in ABB USA from 2019. 

Years at ABB: 25 years

Products worked on so far: 16+

Superpower: Clarity

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