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Meet The Team: Danny Bush

After having his dream of becoming a pilot take an unexpected turn when he was six years old, Danny went on to follow a passion for construction and we could not be happier that he chose to join our team.

Danny first joined COEL as a project manager and quickly progressed into heading up our pre-construction process, as Head of Pre-construction.

In the short year and a half that he has been with us, Danny has already become an integral part of our company. As a result, we decided to sit down with Danny, to find out more about what he values in his role as a Head of Pre-construction, how his job has changed and his dreams for the future.

Can you describe a typical day at your job?

On a typical day, I would start by catching up with my reports to understand the status of each project before updating our projects tracker. I would then review any new qualified leads with the Business Development team and discuss these with the heads of Estimating and Design to add them to the pipeline.

I typically attend two to three meetings per day, which can range from client-facing project meetings, to interview process meetings. I spend time responding to emails and delegating any actions from these emails to the relevant members of my team.

Lastly, I would update my forecasting schedule to inform Operations and the Directors of any Stage 4 tender submissions and their expected start dates on site.

What are some of the challenges you have had to overcome in your role?

Some of the main challenges I face regularly are time and cost management. These can arise in many different settings, but typically we can be faced with a really short duration to provide the client with a Stage 2 proposal or Stage 4 tender. The clients’ requirements always come first and sometimes we must think outside the box to achieve these deadlines, which keeps us on our toes!

We also face challenges with cost management. Sometimes, the client’s requirements do not align with their budget, and we must manage expectations from the outset. We always aim to raise these issues as early as possible so solutions can be found early on in the process.

What advice would you give to someone who was thinking about going into Construction, specifically Project Management and Pre-Construction work?

My first piece of advice would be: Don’t be afraid of making mistakes.

You will come across lots of professionals throughout your career who have good and bad traits. So, my second piece of advice would be to adopt all the good traits from the people you work with throughout your career. This will give you the best chance in your own professional development.

I would also encourage you to surround yourself with the people who can help you achieve your goals, and one way of doing this is to work for a company that aligns with your values and will support you.

What is your favourite thing about your job?

One of my favourite things about my role is being able to provide support and guidance to my reports and the wider team. Aside from my main roles and responsibilities, I really enjoy being leant on for advice and guiding others to overcome their problems.

Over the years, I have built up a wealth of knowledge and experience and think it is incredibly important to share this knowledge with others to reach a shared goal.

When you started at COEL you were a Project Manager and you have recently been promoted to Head of Pre-Construction, how has your role changed?

Transitioning from Project Manager to Head of Pre-Construction has been quite a change in some respects, but really seamless in others. The role demands someone who:

  • Is well organised
  • Can manage a team and client expectations
  • Can plan, and forecast work
  • Is commercially aware

These are all traits of a good Project Manager.

The major change has been transitioning from the ‘construction phase’ to ‘pre-construction’ but the skills are easily transferrable, making this a fairly easy change.

I am also more involved in new business and representing COEL at industry and networking events, which I really enjoy.

Did you always want to work in Construction?

When I was younger, I wanted to be an aircraft pilot, but this dream came to a grinding holt when I found out I was red/green colourblind! Luckily, I was only 6 at the time so I had plenty of time to regroup and rethink.

When I left school, I went to college, trained to become a bricklayer and pursued this career for two years after qualifying and worked on numerous building sites throughout this time.

Unfortunately, as I suffer from asthma being continuously around dust was affecting my health, so I decided to change course. I returned to college to obtain my A-Levels and then embarked on a 3-year degree in Construction Management. After qualifying I secured my first professional job as Site Manager in London, working for an interior fit-out contractor and the rest is history.

Aside from my career in construction, my dream growing up was to become a professional footballer. I played a lot of sports growing up and this has continued throughout my adulthood.

It’s worth noting that I have still not given up on this dream, although my wife would disagree!

What is your favourite thing about COEL?

My favourite thing about COEL is the people. There is a real family feeling to the company and that is down to the people involved with the business. Everyone knows everyone; from the directors to the site-based staff.

We host numerous events throughout the year to ensure our team can join them and fun – it’s great to see the variety of people that attend.

What is your favourite thing to do outside of work?

Spending time with my family is my favourite thing to do outside of work. I have two young boys who keep me on my toes, and I spend most weekends out with the family and playing with my boys.

When time allows, I go and watch Arsenal  – I am very much looking forward to watching them lift the Premier League title this season! I also play golf sporadically and catch up with friends as much as possible.

Dad, son and dog

Do you have a personal ambition to still fulfil?

I would love to build my own house at some point in my life, and I have come to terms with the fact that this will only be achievable when the kids have grown up and flown the nest. They are currently three and one.

Family on a beach during sunset in Mexico

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