Name: Annick Ah Lan
Position: Operations & Membership Manager
Company: The Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors, Sydney
What do you enjoy the most, working in the field of construction & development?
Working for a not for profit professional association, we have the ability to influence and transform the industry. We have instigated a Diversity & Inclusion Committee to advocate for greater awareness of the plights and struggles of those coming from a non-privilege background; that the glass ceiling still exists, that the bamboo ceiling is a real thing and that being LGBTQI-oriented doesn’t make you less competent at your job. I’m also excited about the leaps and bounds that the construction industry is making in terms of technology and digitisation. We are one of the last sectors to embrace technology, but it gives us an extraordinary opportunity to learn from the mistakes other sectors have made and improve on them. It’s not an easy task as developments have tended to be relatively siloed, but one of the things we are concentrating on within our newly formed Digital Innovation Committee is investigating how we can collaborate more across the industry and propagate the ethos of “openness” and transparency across the construction life-cycle by using technology.
Where do you see life in the next 5 years, what possibilities are ahead of you?
Progressing on my journey of continual improvement and being instrumental in assisting my already very strong team to individually flourish and become the best versions of themselves. I’m hoping to further advocate for greater diversity and inclusion and as someone with a background in mathematics and engineering, to be able to encourage more females into STEM and demonstrate that being “nerdy” isn’t necessarily a bad thing!
If you could write a letter to a 13-year-old ‘you’ what would you say?
Don’t sweat the small stuff and keep doing what you’re doing. Be unscripted and unstoppable, the constraints of society are not what should guide or rule you. Listen to what comes from your heart and your mind. Be confident. Be bold. Be brave.
What are 3 skills you have had to develop to get to where you are presently?
- Effective negotiation skills