Meet the team: Willem Potgieter

Willem, a member of solarcity's team based in Canterbury wears a number of different 'hats' in his role at solarcity. With a background as an electrician and running his own solar business in South Africa, Willem applies his vast solar expertise and problem-solving skills to identify and develop solutions, to ensure every solarZero client he encounters receives the best service he can provide.  

Part of the solarcity team since 2015, on any given day Willem will be fulfilling the role of Lead Electrician, Service Advisor for installs, and has recently added Technical Trainer and Quality Control for installations to his variety of responsibilities.

Willem’s commitment to excellence is exemplary - he will always go the extra mile to ensure he never leaves a site visit without doing all and everything he can to fix a problem, spending time with customers to fully explain and educate on how the system works, and answer questions.  

Willem’s passion to deliver a world-class customer experience is evidenced by the positive feedback his client’s provide, and expressed with quality time spent enjoying their hospitality over cups of coffee, some home baking or bikkies, while discussing the operation of their new solarZero system.  

“I just wanted to say I was very happy with the service I received today to finally get batteries and online viewing on track. Willem was helpful and obviously knew his stuff.”

- Rose, solarcity customer.

Willem takes the time to explain how the system works. He says many people are visual, and although they’ve had all the details discussed over the phone, until they see the hardware in place, and are walked through the operation of the system, they understand how it works better.

Willem lives partially off the grid, with a solar energy system and battery that he built himself from recycled materials, such as used lithium-ion batteries from laptops, sound systems, and medical packs. A year after settling in Christchurch, Willem began working on his home solar project in his spare time over, which took eight months to complete. He currently lives 90% off the grid, and spends around $50 a month on additional power. He travels around town in his Nissan Leaf EV which with a 24kWh capacity runs for 100km when fully charged.  

Willem’s new project is building a new home in Rolleston which he hopes to move into mid-2020. He’ll bring his solar energy system with him and plans to extend it to a 40-panel array, as well as adding one wind turbine. He says “he feels like a small kid before Christmas” when he thinks about moving into his new home.

“If you are passionate about your work and train your people with the same passion, it will show in the work that you/they do.”