Name: Mary Hardie
Position: Director of Academic Programs in Building Design Management
Company: Western Sydney University
What do you enjoy the most, working in the field of construction & development?
In the construction industry we create long-lived artefacts that will influence the quality of people’s lives for several decades at the least. Designing, constructing and delivering buildings is a great responsibility to have. I enjoy the potential to make a difference to the built world of the future. A more sustainable industry that places emphasis on social and environmental impacts is certainly what is needed for the future.
Where do you see your life in the next 5 years, what possibilities are ahead of you?
In five years’ time I will be 70 years old. I see my role now as enabling younger people to find their own place in an industry, which has given me a great deal of satisfaction. Most importantly, I hope we find innovative ways to address the major issues of our time. On a personal note, I hope to live long enough to see my grandchildren find their own paths in life.
If you could write a letter to a 13-year-old ‘you’ what would you say?
Don’t let other people tell you how to live your life. You know your own capacities and desires. Listen to reasoned opinions from others and don’t let negative people limit your choices. You have a lot to contribute, but you will need to be forceful at times. Change for the better often involves losing a bit of skin on the way. You will get through it.
What are 3 skills you have had to develop to get to where you are presently?
- IT skills as computers were just beginning to be used in construction when I was a student. Now we use them for nearly everything.
- People management based on good communication skills is essential.
- Presenting to large groups does not come naturally to me. It is something I have had to work at.