Our boss Bryan Hindle was in good form last week, talking to students at Leeds College of building. These first year bricklaying apprentices are working towards their level 1 diploma and don’t yet have much site experience to guide them.
As a former student of the college Bryan was asked to talk to them about what he has learned over the past 40 years in the industry. He explained how decisions he made early in his career enabled him to build a successful business and provide work and opportunity for his employees.
Students had their eyes opened to the rich and varied specialisations, which form an important background to many construction projects. He covered timber infestations; damp treatments and damp diagnosis; wall tie replacement, structural repairs, including Cintec sock anchors and Helifix installations. He explained how traditional masonry repairs using lime-based materials are making a comeback and are a complimentary part of many builder’s skills set. Each of these areas can offer a career. But many people like Bryan have built worthwhile careers, diversifying into several allied or associated specialist trades.
Using a bricklaying diploma to start the foundation of a wonderful and life-long career is possible – Bryan’s started his journey with his plastering diploma. Some will become besotted with bricklaying and stay with this, whilst others may depart into specialist and building pathology based activities. Bryan mentioned the growing retrofit insulation market; basement waterproofing, mould, indoor air quality, invasive weed control and gas membrane installation; all areas worth looking into There are many short easy access courses available, which can provide quick entry to these specialist fields.
The core requirements for good candidates in our industry are reliability, positive attitude, integrity and a helpful demeanor – with these simple things in place anyone can shine. Construction is a meritocracy, where skill and effort will always triumph. All employers are looking for good character, as the rest can then be taught ‘in house’ or via outside courses.
Bryan stressed “Take up any offers of training, you always come away with something useful” – “Listen to your mentors, look people in the eye, keep your promises and offer help where it’s needed” In construction this attitude is noticed and is always reciprocated sooner or later.
The session allowed students to handle thermal imaging equipment, moisture meters, hygrometers, air-flow testing equipment and borescopes. Samples of Dry Rot, various brown and white wet rots and woodworm infestations were passed around too.
Our thanks go to the Michelle Sowe and the college for allowing us to spread the word about exciting and lasting careers in our industry.
Brick-Tie are always happy to hear from anyone looking for a career in our industry – currently we have vacancies for an apprentice in damp and timber treatment and a full time remedial technician (must have a full driving license, great team character and good trowel skills). Apply via the above telephone numbers and ask for Sian.
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