As a senior construction assurance manager at HS2 Ltd, every day presents a fresh challenge for Kelvin Nagberi
What is a typical day in your job?
A typical day on the job is exciting, challenging and different in equal measure. I am accountable for providing specialist constructability support and expertise at each stage of the construction process to the NEC3 project manager and NEC supervisor.
I do this by taking a risk-based approach to the assurance of the works. This allows me to identify and focus my attention on the packages of works that require the most attention based on the risk profile and interface requirements.
What specific skills, knowledge and attributes do you need for your role?
Having great leadership and people skills is vital for this role. Interacting with and managing people both within and outside the company is crucial. Having good analytical and problem-solving skills are also essential for this role.
Over the past 15 years, I have been able to gather a wealth of knowledge, which has helped me fulfil my role effectively. Understanding UK construction regulations – Construction Design and Management and Code of Construction Practice, among others – has helped to develop my technical skills.
In addition, a sound understanding of site-based processes and procedures for health, safety, quality and environmental management, as well as keeping up to date with construction methodologies and innovation, has served me well.
What are your work values?
At HS2 Ltd, our work values are integrity, leadership, respect and safety.
Integrity is simply acting fairly in a consistent and transparent manner. It’s doing the right thing, even in difficult situations.
Leadership is using innovation and challenging to lead by example. It’s making the most of the unique opportunities on offer, having clear direction to deliver excellence and setting new standards.
Respect is understanding and recognising that different people have different values and treating them accordingly – being open-minded, working flexibly and appreciating the impact of our actions.
Safety means caring for our workforce and the public by creating an environment where no one gets hurt. This means making safety our first consideration and creating an environment where everyone can speak up and intervene if something is unsafe.
Understanding when to step back to allow the principal contractor to deliver the project and when to intervene is crucial
What aspect of your role presents the biggest challenges and what brings you most satisfaction?
Having previously worked on projects that don’t lend themselves to working within an integrated project team (IPT) structure, this posed one of the biggest challenges of this role.
It is particularly challenging to find the balance between collaboration within the IPT and ensuring actualisation of HS2’s business strategy goals.
I take a nuanced approach when dealing with the principal contractor. Understanding when to step back to allow the principal contractor to deliver the project and when to intervene is crucial. It is both rewarding and fulfilling when finding this balance leads to seamless execution of the contract deliverables.
As with other roles I have undertaken in the past, the most satisfaction I get is the legacy that is left behind – from taking a train ride on Crossrail to walking through the London Victoria station passenger tunnels, or seeing the Qatar metro taking people to the stadium for the 2022 World Cup.
Being able to see the real world benefit of projects I was involved in fills me with immense pride.
What are your career goals?
My short-term goal is to remain in construction management and develop my management skills. My long-term goal is to transition to project management and eventually programme management.
As I currently hold an executive sponsor role for equality, diversity and inclusion within the IPT, I want to continue to champion this within the industry to make it more inclusive.