The construction industry is a male-dominated one and the idea of women working on a building site or in an engineer’s workshop might seem alien to some people. Luckily, those old fashioned ideas are starting to disappear now and opportunities for women in the construction industry are growing. It can be a bit daunting for a woman working in this area but you shouldn’t let that stop you from making a career switch. You are going to come up against a lot of obstacles during your time in construction but if you handle these situations properly, you can start changing attitudes and thrive in this environment. If you have any worries about your upcoming move into a new career, these tips should help you get through those tough situations.
Don’t Be Afraid To Be Clever
Women working in a male-dominated environment tend to hold back quite a lot of the time because they are anxious about the way that their ideas and opinions will be taken by their colleagues. This is such a shame because it means that your brilliant ideas are never going to see the light of day and your peers won’t realize your true potential. Be bold with your ideas and don’t be afraid to stick your neck out, the chances are you will get a good reaction if your ideas are good and it will teach your male counterparts that any prejudices they might have are unfounded.
Men have a lot of expectations when it comes to women working in the construction industry and most of them aren’t great. A lot of them are going to be expecting you to turn up in a pair of high heels and a dress, completely unprepared for your job. Challenging these expectations is the best way to change attitudes towards women in the construction industry. Make sure that on the first day, you get the best work shoes and other safety equipment so you are ready to start working right away. Don’t give people even the tiniest reason to confirm their preconceptions of you.
It’s going to be scary when you first start and you’re obviously going to want to fit in and get along with your coworkers, but don’t let that stop you from being yourself. It can be tempting, in a male-dominated environment, to alter your behavior in order to build a relationship with your coworkers. The truth is, you weren’t hired because your employer wanted somebody that would do a great impression of all of their male co-workers, they hired you because they wanted somebody with a different outlook and set of skills. If you don’t bring those qualities to your new role, your employer is likely to be disappointed. Have confidence in your own skill set and personality and don’t be afraid to be yourself at work.
While the opportunities that women have are improving, the construction industry is still likely to be a male-dominated world for a while to come, but if women aren’t afraid to go for the career that they want and be themselves, then we can get rid of those outdated ideals for good.