Meet Sophie Cullen, our RISE ambassador

RISE is an arts programme which pays homage to various inspirational women in many careers and industries, throughout 2019. At the launch dinner of the programme a spotlight was shone on Sophie and her journey into the construction industry. We are thrilled to be involved in RISE, and look forward to the upcoming exhibitions and talks from extraordinary women in work. We recently had a chat with our ambassador Sophie and asked her questions such as who inspires her and what she thinks the future holds for women.

Who runs the world?

I believe that everyone runs the world in their own unique way, equally and collectively.

My nan always said to me from a young age, how boring would the world be if everyone was the same? She couldn’t be more right, growing up it has become very clear to me how everybody has their own weaknesses and strengths which come together collectively when working in a team.

I’m very fortunate to be surrounded by such a loving family who have supported me in all my decisions which have got me where I am today, being the youngest sibling and maintaining my stubbornness (which sometimes gets me into trouble) has given me a headstrong approach to me taking control of my life and where I wish to be. Therefore, in summary to this question, I believe I run my world, with the help of everybody I’ve met along the way for their guidance, love and support.

Which woman empowers you?

The first woman who I would initially say empowers me would be my mum for obvious reasons including her continuous support, guidance and unconditional love she has showered me with.

Although there aren’t a lot of women on executive boards of construction Companies it is great to see former Liverpool University alumni Suzannah Nichol as the Chief Executive of Build UK, which brings together the industry’s largest Main Contractors and leading Trade Associations. Opportunities for females in construction can only increase and improve with women like Suzannah leading such influential organisations within construction.

Another lady who has taught me a lot in such a short space of time, was my course leader at Liverpool John Moore’s university – Dianne Marsh. When I first met Dianne, she was always so happy and genuinely a kind hearted, strong willed woman who wanted you to do well, she would always find the time to fit you in around her busy schedule. It was so interesting when she spoke about when she was a Quantity Surveyor, which helped gain an insight as to what to actually expect within the career path I was choosing.

What does it mean to be you?

What it means to be me, is having the power to wake up everyday and make something of myself, set goals and targets, whether they be in my career, at home, or just to make myself or others feel good.

I’ve always been referred to as the girl who’s always happy, smiley or laughing. I believe that life is too short, and if we can be happy along the way, why not make others feel better about themselves too? Especially in work as let’s face it we do spend the majority of our time with our work family.

When was the last time you did something for the first time?

For the first time in a while, I challenged my adventurous side and came out of my comfort zone by taking part in a team building exercise with the company last August, we all set off to North Wales and went gorge walking. It was such an adrenaline rush and so lovely to get to meet some of the team who work from the other office as we don’t get to catch up often.

What do you think the future holds for women?

I think in the future the UK Construction industry will be a great place for women (even more so than it currently is). We just need to get the message out there to females that construction is an exciting, forward-thinking workplace, where every day could hold something new and provide challenges to keep you engaged and with that comes the benefits.

In terms of the construction industry, where I work, the reality is that although half the country’s working population is female, women make up just 13% of the construction sector’s workforce – I predict this figure to rise significantly.

To find out more about RISE please visit www.riseliverpool.co.uk

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