02 | 2021
© Marko Mestrovic (Campino von Ulrike Hirtzberger)

Desislava Georgieva

OCCUPATION ⇨ Technician for billing and work preparation at HOCHTIEF Infrastructure Austria in Vienna

MISSION ⇨ Finding the right balance

Desislava Georgieva discovered horseback riding relatively late, when she was in her early thirties. In 2017 she spent her summer vacation in her homeland, Bulgaria. One day she happened to pass a paddock. She had never ridden a horse before, but she thought it would be fun to give it a try. As a young graduate engineer, she had long been on the lookout for an activity to offset her challenging job. Riding combined everything she wanted: being physically active outdoors and clearing her mind. It was simply ideal. Even though she had no previous experience, she was allowed to mount a horse and ride small rounds at a walking pace. Now she wanted to learn how to ride, starting with the basics. “Controlling horses is a science in itself,” says Georgieva, who is now 35. “In spite of their powerful build, horses are sensitive creatures. Only people who can earn their trust will ultimately enjoy horseback riding.” She continued her new hobby in the Carinthia region, where she worked on a tunnel project of HOCHTIEF Infrastructure Austria until April 2021. She took weekly lessons at a riding school. It was just as liberating as she had imagined it would be. She soon got the hang of it: posture, leg pressure, using the reinsby staying calm and maintaining the routine she had learned, she could easily engage with the horse and establish harmony. The more confident she became, the more she could enjoy riding. And the more her riding slowed down the carousel of thoughts about her job, the more she flourished and strengthened her ability to assert herself.

It’s not always easy for a young woman to stand up for herself in an environment dominated by men. As a technician, she has to maintain an overview of the daily operations at the construction site, check and prepare invoices, as well as recording and documenting all the work done. It’s a highly responsible job that requires serenity and a steady routine. But thanks to her thoroughness, patience, empathy and, above all, hard work, Georgieva has earned the respect and trust of her colleagues over the years. Here too, she sees a parallel to horseback riding: “Trust is the basis of good cooperation,” she says. Since May she has been working for HOCHTIEF on the Heiligenstadt slope bridge project, a challenging construction project in Vienna. She hopes she’ll be able to find a riding school nearby so that she can continue her cherished hobby there as well.