Job Dreams: Tradeswoman
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As part of our Job Dreams series, we speak to professionals from different careers and share their advice with you. Last month, we learned what it's like to be an Inclusion Company Founder and Director. This month, we met Louise, who told us all about what it’s like to do DIY for a living…
What do you do?
Anything from small repairs to bathroom refurbishments!
Can you tell us what your day-to-day is like?
I work on a booking system so I always know where I will be & what work I'll be doing well in advance. This means I am able to prepare materials & load my work vehicle with appropriate materials and tools prior to the job. I’ll arrive to the job & am usually able to complete the work as per plan. Of course there are some instances where I will come across something I’ve not expected to find, & I may need to pop out for some materials to overcome that. Once im finished, I’ll sometimes complete a quote on the way home from work or collect materials for another upcoming job. When I arrive home I unload my work vehicle as I dont leave any tools in it overnight. I’ll then spend some time getting organised for the next day & complete some admin.
What do you love most about your job?
The variety & never getting bored. The flexibility to work to my own schedule,And the income for me is the best I’ve ever had.
What do you find most challenging?
I’ve had to identify ways to organise my workload that works for me. I used to find this quite overwhelming but I now have a few things in place which help me manage current work, pending work, & my own life commitments! Thats a combination of a wall planner, a while board, a laptop, and a diary!
LOOKING BACK AND LOOKING FORWARDS
What did you see yourself doing when you were a kid?
I actually wanted to be a musician, & throughout my education I studied music & was a member of a band. We played regular gigs around London, the UK, & also some in Europe.
What challenges did you face in reaching where you are today?
How to get into a career which was mostly male dominated. I loved DIY & being practical for as long as i can remember. But I wasn't sure how a female would access this for a career choice. Financial restrictions were my main barrier as I decided I would need to self fund a course if I was going to gain relevant skills & confidence.
Where do you see yourself going next?
I plan to get into property development. It’s always been a goal. I’d love to complete a self-build one day too.
ADVICE / CONSTRUCTIVE TIPS:
What do you know now that you wish you’d known when you first left school?
That there are a whole bunch of career choices out there.
What advice would you give to someone interested in joining your industry?
Absolutely go for it. If I can do it then anyone can. I’m a big advocate for people doing things that are right for them & I will always offer any help, advice, encouragement & support that I can to anyone who may be interested. Sometimes a little bit of encouragement can go a very long way!
What’s the best piece of professional advice you’ve been given?
Actually, this was from my brother! He’s been self employed as a glazier for most of his life & this is what he said:
“Louise, if there is one piece of advice I can give you, it’s fingers in pies!”
Basically, make as many contacts as you can as quickly as you can when you embark on a particular journey. You never know how those contacts will benefit you. I actually don’t advertise outside of my social media platforms because I have people who support my business & recommend me for work. Word of mouth & recommendation is more powerful than any advert!
What quote do you live by?
I treat my days & weeks like they could be my last.