Are you a woman interested in building a successful career in the construction industry, but worried if your gender would be a hindrance? In Malaysia, a good majority of women in the construction industry can often be found doing project management or administration, and many are also based on site. Whatever type of role you’re interested in, here are six simple ways you can be successful in the industry:
- Come across as focused and mature During the recruitment process, you must come across as focused and mature. Do some research not only about the job role, but the industry as a whole as well as the company that you’d like to work for (including finding out about what they do). Know what your goal is and don’t be afraid to let the hiring manager know should the opportunity arise. Knowing where you’re going and what you’re interested in indicates that you’re serious about being in the industry.
- Be proactive and take on new challenges Even if you’ve got all the necessary qualifications, you must always be proactive, especially when it comes to your career progression. See any skills that you can develop or incompetencies that you can fix. That said, don’t be afraid to take on new challenges. You can learn as you go when you’re doing something new. The most important thing is for you to have self-belief and be convincing that you’re the person for the project. Be open to new experience.
- Verify information It’s ok if you don’t know everything. If you receive queries from contractors and aren’t sure of what to tell them, politely reply that you’ll get back to them once you’re able to verify the information. Being honest about what you know and don’t know, and taking the responsibility of finding the solution or answer will earn you greater respect among the people you work with. It’s more important to be right and taking the time to do so, rather than give instant answers that turn out to be wrong and costly.
- Take charge You may find yourself being a leader in a project, which makes it crucial for you to take charge. A lot of female professionals in the industry admit feeling apprehensive at the start of their career when it comes to giving direction or supervising, particularly when they’re on site. Overcome this by doing the best you can and leveraging on your strengths.
- Speak up If something goes wrong, don’t be afraid to speak your mind. This will be the time where your communication and interpersonal skills play an important role in determining the success of the project you’re handling. Deal with people professionally and respectfully, without going too soft. Additionally, try not to second guess yourself too much when making a decision
- Know your own worth If you think you’ve worked hard and are good at your job after working for a while in the industry, you should ask for a raise when the right time comes. Look for a good opportunity and bring it up during an appraisal meeting.
In Malaysia, there’s a growing number of women joining the construction industry working on various types of roles. If you’re interested in building a career in the construction industry, check out the various construction jobs in Malaysia within your specialty and interest. Keep the six tips in mind and you’ll be on your way to a rewarding and successful career in construction.