Being a tradesman was his big desire and from the age of 13, operations manager at Hodgson Sayers, Peter Condren, learnt multiple skills from his dad.
Growing up, Peter had contemplated a career in the army or police but his passion for multiple trades became apparent. He joined Hodgson Sayers at the age of 16, after a short stint working alongside his Dad (Peter Condren SNR) at a local building firm. He enjoyed learning and working with multiple trades, bricklaying, block paving, flagging and drainage, joinery and plastering but wanted to embark on a full time apprenticeship.
Stephen Condren, his uncle, was a roofer at Hodgson Sayers and informed him about an apprenticeship opportunity. Peter was successful and began a three year apprenticeship in bricklaying at Newcastle College. His thirst for learning became clear and he advanced to a more technical one year qualification.
Aged 19, Peter was beginning to shine and was leading his own team. He also embarked on a three day site supervising training scheme and followed this up with a five day site management and safety course.
His determination and ability was noticed and he was trusted to manage and supervise sites. Peter also began to work more closely with companies in the utilities sector, which he particularly enjoyed. Although his career was progressing well, he decided to take a year out and travelled to the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Fiji, Australia, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Thailand, Laos and Hong-Kong, with a particular favourite being Laos.
In 2009, Peter returned to the UK in the midst of the financial crash. A vacancy for a position in site management was available at Hodgson Sayers and he jumped at the chance to return.
This is where his career took off, as he began surveying for utility companies. The work was well recognised for generating opportunities and recommendations and he began working with managing director, John Sayers and executive chairman, Billy Hodgson, more closely. In 2012, he was appointed assistant contracts manager.
Peter said: “From there everything fell into place. I worked hard to achieve an HNC and HND in Construction and the Built Environment which enriched my learning, something the company has continually supported me with. People development is a key priority at Hodgson Sayers and is the reason why I am still here, today.”
Following another internal promotion, Peter is now operations manager and works alongside commercial manager, Stephen Lumsdon, to oversee seven contracts managers, two management apprentices, two contract and project administrators plus an estimator and BIM and ERP integrator.
“The challenge for me has been stepping away from a hands-on role to adjusting to become part of the senior management team. Working at Hodgson Sayers you always have advice and guidance onhand. John Sayers and Billy Hodgson have really mentored and developed my managerial skills.
“We have a fantastic group of youngsters who are ‘rising stars’ in the business. Former apprentice, Paul James rose to the challenge when he entered local competitions and his success set a standard for new apprentices entering the company.
“Paul is well respected and looked up to by his younger colleagues and provided good advice to Jordan Condren and David Crank who recently competed in the WorldSkills roof, slating and tiling competition and won a fabulous silver and bronze, respectively. It is important that each of our 24 apprentices have the chance to develop to their full capacity, the opportunity is there. It is all about grabbing it with both hands.”