José’s Journey at Vestas: From Technician to Operations Manager


José's path at Vestas embodies adventure and growth. Joining as a service technician in Spain, he overcame his fear of heights with Vestas' backing, ascending to managerial roles and relocating to Mexico. As an operations manager today, his approach reflects collaboration and leading by example.

José Luis Macaya Sanmiguel began his tenure at Vestas in 2006 as a service technician in the Zaragoza, Spain. His initial role was working with maintaining and servicing wind turbines, a position that demanded not only technical ability but also a commitment to safety and efficiency. One of his hurdles was his fear of heights, a challenge he openly recounts. However, with the extensive training provided by Vestas, José not only conquered this fear but also discovered a newfound rush of adrenaline while working at the top of the turbines.

Within a few years, José’s innate curiosity and drive for professional growth led him to taking on new challenges. He was particularly involved in large corrective projects, which required a high level of technical ability and problem-solving skills. His ability to effectively manage these demanding tasks demonstrated his readiness for further responsibilities.

Seeking further growth, José moved to a specialised team focusing on large improvements. His role expanded over the years, and by 2011, he ventured beyond the Spanish borders to bring his expertise to Mexico. José describes his move as a significant step in his career, transitioning from a local technician to working within international operations. In Mexico, José’s responsibilities multiplied as he took on roles ranging from Commissioning International Technician to Supervisor and later to joining the Technical Planning Office (TPO) in LATAM. José notes that one of the greatest challenges of relocating to a new country and continent was adapting to the cultural and climate differences. However, with the support of his new colleagues, he was able to acclimate and eventually came to cherish the new opportunities presented by this significant change.

“After the first few weeks, I remember that I was about to throw the towel. I didn't see myself in this role because of the climate, the food and a bit, the countries culture. But with the help from colleagues and people who later joined Vestas, very capable people, I then grew accustomed to it, both in my personal and professional life.”

During a brief period, José joined another company, but soon realised that his commitment to Vestas and its mission ran deep—like "blue blood" through his veins, as he fondly describes it. He returned with renewed motivation and passion, stepping into a managerial role where he led the TPO team for Latin America. This return highlighted not just a career move but a deep-seated loyalty to Vestas and its goals.

José’ describes his leadership style as leading by example, inspiring a team culture rooted in cooperation. He explains that he tries to foster a collaborative environment where knowledge and innovation are freely exchanged, ensuring each team member is a key player in the group's collective success. His approach not only strengthens the team's bond but also encourages a steady stream of new ideas and continuous learning.

“I would say I lead by example. I’m a technician, so in that way, it seems natural to lead by showing people how things were done, how I did them, and how I think they should do them. Then, I give them the opportunity to speak freely and provide input on how they think it should be done. In that way, hopefully, we can inspire each other as a team.”

Throughout his career, José has valued the contributions of colleagues from various departments, whose diverse perspectives and expertise have enriched his own understanding and approach to whatever challenges he was dealing with. He dedicates much of his success to the collaborative spirit between him and his colleagues, which has allowed him to learn from the experiences of his peers. José emphasizes the immense significance of his family, which has always been a strong support system for him and his endeavors. He describes them as his "strongest pillar," acknowledging that he wouldn't have achieved where he is today without their unwavering support.

Today, José holds the position of operations manager in Mexico, working with the strategic overview of operational activities in the region, ensuring the that the local teams align with Vestas global standards and objectives.  

Looking back on his journey, José highlights the importance of dedication and adaptability. His progression from a service technical position to a strategic leadership role underscores his commitment to both personal development and the broader mission of Vestas. José describes the opportunity to work across borders as a great value, and something he has always found as a privilege to experience.

"I just turned 39, half my life has been with Vestas—it's a lifestyle, marking the path, setting an example. Being part of this huge family is unique. What stands out is experiencing multiculturalism, talking with colleagues from Brazil, Italy, Spain, Portugal, the US... That social network within Vestas is incredible. The opportunities to travel, experience other cultures, especially now, have been special.” 


By Simon Slebsager