16 Oct Career Story – James Griffin (Assistant Project Manager)
James Griffin, Assistant Project Manager in the WWA Truro office, shares his career story:
What is your background and how did you get into Construction?
My family runs a construction business, which I have been involved with from an early age. I have, therefore, grown up immersed in the construction sector.
My first taste of construction outside the family business came from an opportunity to work abroad as a labourer and later, as a trade supervisor. I was 18 at the time and learnt very quickly that hard work pays off in construction.
From my experiences, I knew that construction was my calling. I was excited at the thought of shaping the built environment and generating benefits for local communities. This gave me the drive to develop my skills and knowledge and embark on a career in construction.
Tell us what the day job looks like?
My day job is always people-centric. I spend a lot of my time communicating and coordinating teams, including specialists, such as Architects and Engineers. Effective project management ensures that collectively we achieve a common goal, which is a great motivator for me.
Creating and maintaining close client relationships is very important. I help to provide reassurance for clients, by demonstrating technical expertise, professionalism and the ability to manage the unknown.
I am also responsible for programme management, contract administration, quality control, risk mitigation and site supervision.
Tell us about your degree and APM progression?
I have a BSc (Hons) in Construction Management and the Environment. Studying for this degree gave me the opportunity to develop my knowledge in areas of construction, such as; construction law, Building Information Modelling (BIM), technology and management techniques.
Attending University allowed me to establish a large friendship group with future construction industry professionals. I am in regular contact with these friends, which gives me a network of contacts from around the country that I can call on.
I am a qualified Project Manager (PMQ) through the Association of Project Managers (APM) as well as being an Associate member of the APM. Being qualified, as well as being a member of the APM provides verification of my expertise through independent assessment of my skills and knowledge. It also underpins my role in the construction industry and the value that I can bring to a project.
Would you recommend a career in construction to others?
Construction is a rewarding industry to work in. We all spend the majority of our lives in and around the built environment and at one-stage, these buildings were construction projects. I have a part to play in influencing the construction of better buildings and looking back at the end of a project and saying ”I helped to make that” is incredibly satisfying.
Construction can be challenging. However, for those who are eager to work hard and are keen problem solvers, working in construction can provide a career with endless opportunities for progression and development
Why did you choose to start your career in Cornwall?
I am from Bristol originally and my family and I used to visit Cornwall almost every weekend. I have always had fond memories of being in the county so when the opportunity to work there came up – I grabbed it!
Cornwall is an area of constant enterprise and innovation. I wanted to be a part of a company that embraced this ethos and Ward Williams Associates does! I have not looked back since deciding to move to Cornwall to live and work. I have a lifestyle that encompasses hard work and plenty of play.
What are your aspirations for the future?
I hope to progress my career at WWA and lead a range of projects.
I also wish to develop Constructing Excellence’s, Generation for Change (G4C) club in Cornwall to provide a space for development and networking for Cornwall’s future construction industry leaders.
If you are interested in careers in construction, please visit our current vacancies page.