How were you introduced to the construction industry?
I got my start in the construction industry thanks to my dad, who was a site manager at the time. He wanted me to have a solid trade to fall back on, so I became an apprentice plumber and spent two years in college earning my City & Guilds diploma. But as I went through my training, I found myself increasingly drawn to construction management. Unfortunately, finding opportunities in that field was quite a challenge. Things took a turn when I had to move due to circumstances, and it became tough to secure an entry-level plumbing position in the new area. In the meantime, I took on a labourer’s job to make a living while I kept searching for a better fit. It was during this time on a construction site that I struck up conversations with some site managers who pointed me in the right direction for transitioning into construction management. Through determination and a lot of networking, I eventually landed a position as a trainee site manager.
What made you want to pursue your career? (which has now led to a position at Angel Square as a site manager)
I’ve always had a competitive drive and a strong desire to improve and excel in everything I do. This attitude has been a key factor in my personal and professional growth. Additionally, working with motivated colleagues has consistently motivated me to become better.
Who were your mentors In the industry and how did they help you achieve your goals?
John Irons, who served as a Construction Director at the time, played a pivotal role in kickstarting my career by helping me secure my first job as a Trainee Site Manager at RG Carter. I consider myself extremely fortunate for the opportunities that unfolded. As a trainee, I received invaluable guidance from Jake Betts, an experienced Site Manager who generously took me under his wing. He mentored me throughout my first significant project, imparting the essential skills and knowledge needed to excel in a Site Manager role. Jason Howard, who was a Project Manager at the time, had a profound impact on my career progression. He played a crucial role in propelling me to the next level, even going so far as to rejoin McLaren and encouraging me to follow suit. Jason has been a guiding presence, helping me stay on the right course ever since. Gavin Turnbull, my Operational Director at McLaren, has been another instrumental figure in my journey. Both he and Jason have been dedicated mentors, ensuring my career stays on the trajectory necessary to accomplish my professional goals. Their support and guidance have been invaluable. To mention there are plenty more names, just not enough space!
How would you approach younger people thinking about entering the construction industry?
I think it would be a great idea to involve schools and colleges more in giving students a better understanding of the construction industry.
This could involve sharing insights into the industry’s various aspects, especially its technological advancements. I believe this approach could really pique the interest of the younger generation.
What have been the most rewarding and challenging parts for you in the industry?
Working in construction comes with its fair share of challenges. For people like me who love their sleep, those early mornings can be a bit tough, I won’t lie. But despite the early wake-up calls, I genuinely think the good parts of this job far outweigh the not-so-great bits. There’s something incredibly satisfying about seeing a project through to completion, and taking charge of your own area for the first time gives you a great sense of pride and responsibility. Plus, you get to work with all sorts of people, and sometimes, you’re lucky enough to do it in some truly beautiful places, all while contributing to some amazing projects. That’s why I think the construction industry is doing so well these days.
Are there any aspects of the construction industry you would like to see grow/change going forward?
Two key areas that catch my attention are sustainability and technological integration. I believe it’s important to see a significant shift towards more eco-friendly construction practices, including the use of environmentally friendly materials, reducing waste, and adopting energy-efficient construction methods with the aim of achieving a “Carbon Net Zero” target. When it comes to technology, it’s evident that the construction industry has been somewhat slower in adopting modern advancements compared to other sectors. I’d like to see a broader adoption of advanced technologies like BIM, drones, and robotics to enhance productivity, streamline project management, and improve safety on construction sites. Moreover, the wider implementation of technologies like virtual reality can bring significant benefits to the construction industry, especially in terms of improving quality control.
Which direction would you like to see your career head within the next 5 years?
As a Site Manager in my current role, I’m actively setting my sights on the next stage of my career, which involves transitioning into a senior position as a Senior Site Manager. Looking further ahead, by the end of the next five years, I’m firmly committed to pushing my boundaries and pursuing a challenging role in project management.