Jonathan DERY

Group Communication and Training Manager

Jonathan has an unusual career path, with a wealth of experience after 11 years in varied roles, from production engineer to internal auditor at the head office, but also site manager aged only 26 or technical director in DRC. Jonathan is an enthusiast, bursting with creativity, keen on respect and trust, who loves to take things on, communicate with others and convince people.  

Can you describe your career pathway?

I attended the ESTP - Ecole Spéciale des Travaux Publics and the IFP School - the French Institute of Petroleum. I wanted to do something exciting, different. I wanted an unusual job.

Why did you choose Perenco?

During my studies, I was sponsored by Perenco. As the end of my studies approached, I had a job interview. I signed my contract and shortly before the end of my studies, I received confirmation that I had been offered a job.

I chose Perenco because of the countries where the company operates, the straightforward recruitment process and for the people who hired me. I had the feeling I could see a glint in their eyes.

Can you describe your professional journey with Perenco?

I was first assigned to the Democratic Republic of Congo as Production Engineer. During the first year, I was responsible for the production of oil and gas wells and fluid. Then, I did the same job in Congo Brazzaville, on an offshore site, for a year and a half. Then I went back to DRC, where at 26 years old I worked as Site Manager. I was not only in charge of the production but also of the maintenance, the power station that supplied the city, all aspects of industrial security, logistics and of 400 people.
The subsidiary adventure is thrilling. It is another world. It is a life of unrivalled dynamism. In the morning you go out, you take the boat or helicopter ... it spices up your daily life!
I then returned to the head office in Paris, where I spent three years working on general internal audit assignments. It may seem surprising, but this journey is possible at Perenco because there is a real sense of collaboration. People take the time to help, advise and train.
I then returned to DRC as Technical Manager of the subsidiary.
I was in charge of all the engineering projects and part of the operations, i.e. the fleet, the sale of crude and the collaboration with production.
Among the engineering projects, there are the oil projects of course, but I also took care of the construction of a waste treatment plant, roads and welding workshops.
Back in Paris, I held the position of Decommissioning Coordinator for eight months. And finally, I came to the position I have today.

What does your job entail and what challenges do you face?

At the beginning I was in charge of training, then internal and external communication then ... other jobs arrived one after the other.
At Perenco, we have one clear instruction: become masters in our fields. With jobs that are largely operational, the need for training is constant. For skill development, we prefer internal training provided by employees who also teach in renowned organisations.
Regarding my HR jobs, I give an opinion on the technical skills of the candidates and I manage the rotational staff assignments for the subsidiaries. The HR policy of Perenco is clear: to meet the requirements of the sites by sending them the best profiles; to enable everyone to follow a career pathway that is rewarding and motivating. This requires a truly personalised follow-up of each employee. There is no grid, rule, or career type. Each case is examined individually.
Another third of my time is dedicated to Perenco internal and external communication. I have other jobs such as auditing and trading activities as part of the group's acquisitions. Finally, I have just been appointed DPO, data protection officer, for Perenco.

How do you go about working in a team?

There is no real hierarchy. Everyone is everyone’s colleague. Around projects, it is a joint effort. This is the case at the head office but also in subsidiaries.

How would you describe PERENCO?

It is an oil company where every employee counts, is known and recognised. There is a great sense of intimacy. Managers are all accessible. People appreciate and respect each other. Each person is autonomous and empowered.

What I like about Perenco is trust. A real trust that translates into responsibilities we are given early, much earlier than anywhere else.

Which project are particularly proud of?

It was in the DRC. We needed to repair an electric cable at sea, 250 meters offshore and impossible to get to by boat. We made a small platform out of scaffolding. As it was very hot, we put dried palm leaves to shade the platform. We were able to fix it in a week. It would have taken months if we had had to resort to a more traditional solution. This is a real example of the operational creativity that is possible and appreciated at Perenco!

In your opinion, what do the following words mean at Perenco?


To be free from all formality and unnecessary procedures. Giving priority to quality and simplicity.


The oil industry is a mechanical industry. Innovation lies in the engineering, in the way of thinking and going further, producing more or producing faster, producing differently to others. For us, innovation is about being a pioneer in engineering.

Which corporate value(s) do you most admire at Perenco?

Boldness. Have the opportunity to dare, to have a different opinion from others.

What would you say to convince someone to join Perenco?

We take things on, respect, convince, develop and energise.
Passion is another strong group value.

Staggered questions
  • Your favourite word and the one you hate?

    Ah là là! 
    Swear words, all the swear words. I will not use them.

  • A way to relieve stress?

    Asian food

  • In a football team, what position would you play?

    The commentator

  • What is your favourite acronym?


  • Someone or a character that you love to follow?


  • What do you miss the most when you are a long way from home?

    The Wi-Fi.

  • How do you stay connected with your loved ones?

    With WhatsApp 

  • Your favourite country?

    An Island. A Caribbean Island.

  • Your favourite holiday?

    A Caribbean cruise.

  • Complete this sentence :

    Jonathan, is the… politician of Perenco.