Loren Hickey is the Pre-Contracts Manager for John Holland’s Infrastructure and Major Project Divisions. With degrees in Civil Engineering, Marketing and Public Relations, Loren has close to 15 years of experience in the construction industry and has recently commenced her Master of Construction Law at the University of Melbourne. In addition to her role at John Holland, she is the Deputy Chair of the Infrastructure Association of Queensland, member of the Board of Professional Engineers of Queensland and a member of the National Association of Women in Construction.
3:45 Loren discusses her motivation for continually growing her skill set and seeking new qualifications:
- One of her strengths is her ability to learn, and she says upgrading her qualification is leveraging that strength to build her career.
- She sees qualifications as a source of competence and confidence to carry out her role effectively.
- Her belief is that educational institutions are more comfortable places to learn than a real world environment.
8:48 Loren shares tips on how to build a career:
- She recommends identifying the skills gap and plugging that gap by acquiring new skills and surrounding yourself with people who have complementary skill sets.
- She encourages young graduates to always ask questions.
- Contrary to popular advice, Loren believes saying yes to all opportunities might not be for everyone and says pursuing challenges that you’re comfortable with will give you the safest environment to learn and avoid burnout.
12:08 Loren reflects on the nature of the construction industry and the role of next generation in shaping the industry:
- Her opinion is that the construction industry is slow to change because of the inherent risks involved in being accountable for the performance, safety and quality of an infrastructure.
- Loren believes the industry must become market oriented by listening to the values, needs and preferences of the next generation. This should guide the projects the industry pursues in the future to deliver infrastructure that brings true value to the community.
15:30 Loren on her approach to building a great team:
- Assembling a team with complementary skill sets.
- Finding people who are committed to doing the work.
- Being empathetic to the needs and preferences of her team members.
- Communicating and building trust over time.
- Willing to have difficult conversations when necessary.
- Being open to feedback from her team members on how she could support them better.
25:00 Loren shares the inspiration and vision for her latest venture Springboard Co.
- She realised people were interested to learn how she managed multiple commitments in her life. The prospect of helping people believe it was still possible to pursue their personal goals while meeting obligations, and encouraging women to stay in the workforce inspired her to share her insights to the community.
- With Springboard Co. Loren hopes to build a platform for professionals seeking growth to connect and build relationships with people who can help them achieve that.
34:00 Loren explains her decision making process:
- She envisions her future self and works out the next steps that would take her closer to getting there.
- Watching her kids helps her realise what’s important to her in life.
- She would also talk to people and get their advice for any big changes in her life.
43:29 Loren shares her views on confident mindset and how to make the most of it:
- Her opinion is that it is not possible to sustain a confident mindset everyday, and she says that is okay.
- But Loren believes you must take action when you do feel confident about doing something before you lose it.
52:41 Loren on how to help people achieve their career goals:
- To people in senior positions, Loren says don’t assume and always ask your people what they hope to achieve and explore ways you could facilitate it for them.
- She also advises people wanting to grow to actively seek out people who can help them advance in their career.
56:37 An industry change Loren would like to see by the time she retires:
- She hopes that International Women’s Day would be about celebrating the achievement of true gender equality in our society.
You can connect with Loren Hickey on LinkedIn.
About your host:
Lauren Karan, Director and Founder of Karan & Co.
With over a decade of experience as a recruiter and development coach, Lauren Karan found that her priorities rapidly changed after the birth of her two children. In 2022 she founded Karan & Co flipping the out-dated recruitment model with a focus on retention through career coaching and development.
Lauren believes that If opportunity doesn’t knock, you have to build a door – and it’s this same philosophy that inspired her to create the Building Doors podcast.
The Building Doors podcast is for anyone undergoing a transformation in their life. Regardless of whether you feel stuck in your current role, need some inspiration on what steps to take next, want to learn how to level up as a business owner or simply want to listen to the experiences of successful entrepreneurs and industry professionals, the Building Doors podcast is all about unlocking your potential.
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