Steven Thomson knows “the sky’s the limit” when it comes to a career in construction

As a Superintendent at Ledcor in Vancouver, British Columbia, no two days are the same for Steven Thomson—and that’s just the way he likes it. He’s involved in every aspect of a project from start to finish, whether it’s assisting with designs, pulling together contracts, ensuring schedules are adhered to, or most importantly, maintaining the safety program on all his projects. From day to day, project to project, repetition is never an issue for Thomson.

“I’d be less happy in a job where I do the same thing day in and day out,” he says. “This job, you’re constantly striving for that goal of project completion and success. It’s very goal-oriented and it’s awesome to bring everyone together, pulling at the same time towards the same goal.” Admittedly, the construction industry wasn’t always top of mind for Thomson. He didn’t really have a set plan out of high school, floating around through different sales jobs until he finally decided to take on some small labour jobs. From there, he enrolled in the four-year carpentry apprenticeship program at the British Columbia Institute of Technology and continued to climb the ranks from journeyman carpenter to foreman to superintendent. Thomson says the availability of union grants and tuition reimbursement allowed him to focus on his school work rather than how he was going to pay for it.

Now, with almost two decades of experience in the construction industry, Thomson says “it’s really easy” to identify what he loves most about his job.

“The amount of people I get to work with on a daily basis is what really motivates me,” he shares. “Being part of a project team that drives me towards success is what I love.”

There’s also a pride he takes in creating buildings that now sit along the Vancouver skyline. “You get to see the end result, it’s pretty incredible,” he says. “To be involved at the beginning of [a building] when we’re looking at drawings and conceptualizing it, and then years later as you’re driving into the city and you see it as part of the skyline? It’s awesome. I have a three-year-old daughter and I get to say ‘Look, daddy helped build that!’”

While being a project superintendent isn’t necessarily what pops into peoples’ minds when they think of careers in construction, Thomson just says this is proof that perception is lagging in comparison to what the industry has to offer.

“People have the wrong idea of what construction work is and how sophisticated it is,” he says. “It’s a really innovative, forward looking, hard-working industry.” And for those not sure if construction is right for them? Thomson’s suggestion is quite clear: you won’t know until you try.

“Don’t let the fear of making the wrong choice hold you back,” he stresses. “You can always change directions. Reach out to people in that role and talk to them about it. At this time, in this market, the sky’s the limit. Keep looking around you and be vocal about what you want to do. If you want to move up, there’s endless opportunities.”

Interested in a career like Steven’s?

Here are some resources that have helped him, or that he’s been involved with, throughout his career:

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