100 for 100 series: Norma Odain-Hines | Wates

100 for 100 series: Norma Odain-Hines


Our latest 100 for 100 featured employee is Norma Odain-Hines

2018 is a milestone year as it marks 100 years since women in the UK were given the right to vote as part of the Representation of the People’s Act.

At Wates we want to use this historic anniversary as a catalyst for promoting equality of opportunity for women across our industry. Throughout 2018 we are running a campaign called #100for100, where we will feature 100 women from across the business at all levels – providing a window into the daily working lives of our female colleagues and a platform for their views.

Our latest entrant is below, plus You can see all current featured employees here


Norma Odain-Hines

Introduce yourself for us

Many of you who know me often shy away from me when I rock up on site as they often know I will be asking them to get involved in some CSR activity.

I am deeply committed to working within the community along with supporting schools and colleges with developing their understanding of the link between industry and education. I find this work to be interesting, challenging and deeply rewarding. I pride myself on my ability to work professionally, sensitively and appropriately, identifying and working with additional agencies/partners to provide an all-round service that maybe needed, by just going over and beyond of what my role may require allowing someone to progress in life, as my parents came to England in the Wind Rush era from St Vincent in the West Indies, which is why as a child I have always had the attitude to work hard and feel comfortable working within various community groups.

How long have you been in your current role? 1 year, although I’ve been with Wates for almost 10 years

I have worked for Wates for nearly 10 years, which has been a pleasure and during that time I have grown within my role as a Community Investment Advisor across the Construction business in Home Counties and London.

What brought you to Wates?

After 10 years with CITB and several years with the brokerage in London, I wished to work locally in an area that was still comfortable and had some variety and heard about a new role as Project Skills Co-ordinator for the National Skills Academy for Construction with Wates for Building Schools for the Future.

Following several interviews I was offered the role and joined in December 2008.

What advice would you give to women entering the industry?

To anyone wishing to enter the sector I would advise them that the construction industry is so varied and there are huge amounts of career paths that draw on core skills/behaviours, as a women I would always stay true to who  you are, your beliefs and work hard as you will be recognised for who you are not your sex.

Who are your role models?

Baroness Howells as she was the first black woman to sit on the Greater London Council’s training board and the first female member of the Court of Governors of the University of Greenwich.

Rosa Parks who is famous for refusing to give up her seat and made a change which is inspirational and what I want to achieve in life by making a difference.

Tell us something unusual about you   

I was a twin, or the West Indian spelling of my surname is Audain-Hinds, so I am used to change.

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

Whist 100 years is a long time, in my life time I would like to see an improvement on diversity and inclusion as I feel as a sector we sometimes overlook groups with a skill set that could thrive within a role within the sector.