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construction managers and engineers

What skills and attitudes do you value most at the workplace and advice when chasing a junior role in the Civil and construction industry?

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Martin’s Answer

Hi Kyle,

Optimism, drive and determination is a good base to get started.

Know that things don't always go as planned. Changes on the fly and quick decision making skills will become part of your daily life.

Look at the big picture but don't become overwhelmed with the size of the job. One bite at a time.
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Mike’s Answer

Stoic traits work best in almost any Industry:
1) Wisdom and prudence to be a critical thinker and find solutions
2) Justice to treat others fairly as you would want to be treated. Always improve the processes in which your are immediately involved, and respect others processes in which you are not involved. Assume error and faults are typically in the established process, and assume the best in people until proven otherwise. Have the same situational awareness and patience of others situations as you want for yourself. Team comes first (e.g.: company, family friends)
3) Courage to be open, honest, transparent about yourself, brave enough to do the right thing even when it's not easy or it may make you vulnerable. Never fear starting, working on or completing a task on a project or a role as part of a team.
4) Discipline to be consistent, balanced, reliable, resilient when things get difficult, and respectful. Always be improving yourself.
Fail early and often, learn from your mistakes, and minimize mistakes as much as possible.
If you want to get Meta with it, then:
A) think in terms of immediate team performance as well as long term resilient company.
B) this also applies to those who wish to elevate to a leadership position formally or informally
C) Compete with yourself. Competing against others should always be done in good sport with like minds and positive results. Overly and maligned competitiveness against others can sometimes devalue what you have done, are doing, can do and can potentially degrade your value as part of a team.
Always do your best!
Thank you comment icon This was super helpful, thank you! Kyle
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Joe’s Answer

Listen carefully, pay attention to the people you are working with. Ask questions when you have them. You'll be surprised just how much you can learn from people who have been in the industry for a while -- even if they didn't follow the same path that you did. Depending on your role and level of involvement, some of the best resources you may discover are boots on the ground workers who have been in the industry for over a decade.

However, I'll add to that: It is not uncommon for clients or workers to have an agenda or bias when they get a chance to talk with you. Take what they say with a grain of salt. Treat it as potential knowledge. Ask your educators/mentors/superiors about what you've heard that seems helpful or wise. They'll be impressed that you've been listening and paying attention and you'll be able to vet the knowledge you've gained.
Thank you comment icon Joe, thank you! Kyle
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Peter’s Answer

As a new Civil Engineer, you have an opportunity to gain knowledge in a variety of disciplines that will make you an increasingly valuable employee. Seek to place yourself on a variety of projects. These include infrastructure -water, sewer, roads, development projects, studies and detailed design. Get as broad an array of experience as you can. Also seek out construction site inspection opportunities. It will serve you well to understand construction challenges from the viewpoint of contractors. After a few years, evaluate the possibility of attending graduate school to gain advanced knowledge in a specialized discipline that appeals to you. This will set you up to gets the most out of a rewarding career in Civil Engineering.
Pete Sturtevant, PE
Thank you comment icon Thank, at the moment I have a broad range of within the construction industry thanks to my family overall try my best to finish my 5 year degree to 4 in Australia Kyle
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