I had the pleasure of serving as a guest speaker for the Power Up: It’s a Mother-Daughter Thing! on the panel for “Finding Success in the Construction Industry.” The program was held on March 22. Women from all facets of the construction industry discussed career opportunities in today’s construction industry and explored central questions about opportunities in the workplace. I was invited to share tips for success within the industry; share my personal journey and offer any other interesting information, which might spark the interests of these young ladies and their mothers during the panel discussion.
Topics included finding success, sharing greatest lessons learned, mentoring and establishing, building and utilizing professional relationships. As panelists we were asked to answer questions: 1. What was your entry point into the construction industry? or How did you choose this career path? 2. Please share with us the greatest lessons you’ve learned as a leader. 3. Share empowering opportunities, positive takeaways and recommendations to the audience on finding success in a male dominated industry. Did you go to college to pursue this career pathway? 4. What are the obstacles girls can expect while pursuing this career pathway? 5. What has working in this industry taught you about leadership? 6. How have you evolved as a leader? What insight have you gained about your talents and strengths? 7. As a leader, what talents or strengths do you rely on most in your daily life? 8. As a successful woman in this industry, describe one of your most successful moments? 9. Is having a mentor important and if so why? 10. Who or what are some of your most important resources for guidance, information etc., in your profession? 11. What inspired you to choose your career path and how will you continue to use that inspiration? 12. What is the single most important piece of advice you would share with a young lady interested in this industry?
This panel discussion had a significant impact on me. It was a transformative experience for me, as well as the students who attended. We must continue to create opportunities for people to share their stories with the next generation. Everyone can contribute. Our young ladies and men need more mentors to answer these questions. If you are a woman or man that can share your story with the next generation, especially in the under served area, I encourage you to do so. Often we go through our careers going through the motions of life. We don’t even realize how valuable our stories are to share with the next generation. If you know a young person or young adult with whom you can share the answers to the above questions, I encourage you to not underestimate the power of your story. Share it even if a young person doesn’t ask. They may not know to ask.
In order to achieve sustainability, we must share our stories to leave the world better than the way we found it.