Up Close & Personal: Blogging the Boss
Now it isn’t often the boss of Buildcom Construction has time to sit down for a Q & A session, in between client meetings, site visits and pricing for developments the boss is run off his loafers!
The Director of Buildcom, Andy, was asked the hard-hitting questions and honest (sometimes one word answers) were given. Here is how it all went after a bribe of coffee and biscuits…
Q. What was your first ever job?
A. As a kid I grew up on a plantation in Carnarvon. Picking and packing bananas was my job until I moved to Perth. Unpaid job too! To this day I still can’t eat a banana.
Q. From your humble beginning as a country kid to the move to Perth, what were the significant milestones which have bought you to where you are today?
A. Well at the age of 21, after completing a Boiler Maker apprenticeship within a commercial building company in Perth, I found a passion for the industry. I had the opportunity to move on from my trade and try my hand at some construction supervising. I was thrown in the deep end and loved it. I gained so much knowledge and valuable experience being on site managing multi-million dollar projects. It was probably at the end of my first office/ warehouse build when I knew this is something that I wanted to do.
After supervising for a year, I took a gamble early on an invested in my own commercial building. As an apprentice, you don’t make much money, but over the time I managed to save $25k, which was my deposit into gaining a bank loan. A friend of mine at the time partnered up with me in this development, both our bank loans were approved for $250k a piece and away we went. I probably ate my fair share of packet noodles and baked beans during this time but it really did pay off.
I didn’t hold onto this warehouse, we sold up and I re invested into a new development and so my drive and passion for the game increased.
Not long after my first build, I started the process and the study to become a Registered Builder.
Q. Wow, so you took a punt and it paid off. What would be your advice for someone wanting to get in to the commercial construction sector and doing their own development? Any pitfalls to look out for?
A. There is always a risk in everything you do. It depends on how badly you want something. Keep in mind though the banks are not so generous on lending these days due to current economic conditions, so it may be tough to get the funding. Even if you do have the funds to get started on your own development, my advice is to do your research. There are so many wrong decisions you could make from paying too much for land, not completing site testing to choosing the wrong commercial builder. Don’t over commit yourself and don’t be too greedy. A small profit is still a win.
After answering his phone three consecutive times and replying to a few emails, the interview could resume to ask some personal questions.
Q. Okay, so what is your pet hate?
A. How long have we got on this interview because I probably have 101, but if I had to pick a couple I would say people who are constantly late and dishonesty.
Q. Quote you live by?
A. “Work until you no longer have to introduce yourself”
Q. Greatest personal achievement?
A. My son
Q. Most influential person in your life?
A. My wife
Q. What does a Director of a building company do for fun?
A. Riding and driving anything… fast.
Q. Favourite holiday destination?
A. Carnarvon! Just kidding, would definitely have to be Croatia so far.
Q. If you could pick one super power, what would it be?
A. Be able to read minds, I am pretty good at filtering the bulls$#t, but mind reading would save me the time!