100 for 100 Series: Sam Johnson | Wates

Equality of opportunity for everyone is essential for businesses to thrive. For 2019 International Woman’s Day, Sam Johnson shares what #balanceforbetter means to her.

Sam Johnson - Regional PA, SES Engineering

Introduce yourself for us

I’m Sam Johnson, Regional PA at SES Engineering.

How long have you been in your current role?

13 years, although I have been with SES for almost 19 years.

What brought you to Wates?

I started working for SES in 2000 after moving from Edinburgh to Manchester. I wanted a new challenge, SES and the construction industry stood out from other opportunities available. SES were acquired by Wates 3 years ago.

What advice would you give to women entering the industry?

Don’t hesitate, there are so many different roles and opportunities available. Also, don’t be scared to get out of your comfort zone and take on new challenges, getting out of my comfort zone has given me some of my best experiences.

Who are your role models?

I’d have to say my Gran. She was a very strong woman who lived through some hard times. She always encouraged me to be my best, and when I do things that I’m proud of I like to think, that if she were still around, she would be proud too.

Tell us something unusual about you

I support Wigan Athletic FC, that’s where my parents were from originally before we moved to Edinburgh when I was very young. That’s unusual, as where I’ve lived (Edinburgh and Manchester) I don’t get to meet many other Wigan fans!

What changes would you like to see in 100 years time?

Perhaps not 100 years time, I think this one is needed sooner! I’d like to see better construction career awareness in schools. I am a STEM Ambassador and spend some time in schools and colleges encouraging the next generation to choose a career in construction. I often find myself explaining the different careers available in our industry – many young people just aren’t aware of them, they think working in construction means ‘hands on’ work i.e. bricklaying, plastering, plumbing etc, they don’t know about other roles such as Quantity Surveying, BIM, Building Physics and so on. Many of the student’s biggest influencers – teachers and parents – also aren’t aware of the different roles and career paths available.

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