The challenges of working in communications at SCS Group
Eleanore Nash, August 15, 2016
Part 2: You can occasionally feel like an overly-attached girlfriend.
Part of my job during my internship at SCS Group was to produce a range of case studies on construction projects that had been recently completed or were still undergoing work. Achieving my set task involved interviewing the Project and Contracts Managers responsible for each development, but getting hold of them was no mean feat. Being Project or Contracts Manager entails a lot of work and responsibility, resulting, unfortunately for me, in a busy schedule.
Phase one: choosing your victim
After preliminary discussion with Regional Manager (London and South) Faye Young and Contracts Manager Dave Jenkinson, I selected which projects I wanted to write a case study on. I focused on 27 Poultry and The Star and Garter, for which Luke Wilczek is Project Manager, as well as Plot 103 of Greenwich Peninsula and Limehouse Basin where Dave is in charge of the SCS team.
Phase two: tracking
As Dave was off due to illness during my first week, I concentrated my efforts on tracking down Luke.
With Luke and Dave both based in London, and I in Cardiff, I began looking up whether or not they were free through SCS Group’s calendar in the hope of knowing when they’d be in the office. After a dozen calls gone unanswered, however, I had to rethink my strategy. I then began to email Luke, hoping he’d tell me when I could call, a system which worked as long as he didn’t get caught up on site.
When I finally got hold of Luke at the beginning of my second week, it took me a few seconds to overcome the sheer surprise at having finally achieved my goal. After only three rings, a human voice answered instead of the machine-automated sound of rejection: “Record your message…”. One small step for Luke, one giant leap of joy for El.
Phase three: realisation
Too busy to talk at that moment, Luke said he’d finish answering two emails before phoning back. Keeping his word, he later returned my call. However, when I called the next day about another project, he again told me he would ring at a more convenient time. This time he never did.
I thought: “How dare he do his job so well he’s too busy to talk to me?”
I sounded much like on overly-clingy girlfriend who gets upset when her partner brushes her off, saying he’s too busy to talk, or swears to call back later and never does. Worst of all, I’d rung him on so many occasions that I had actually memorized his mobile phone number.
Phase four: stepping back (a bit)
Despite fears of having a restraining order filed against me, I knew I had to persevere in order to meet the deadline. This time, though, I simply emailed, waited for a reply and hoped nothing would come up which might prevent him from picking up at our arranged calling time.
Three-and-a-half weeks later, I have completed one case study on SCS Group’s shaft system installation at 27 Poultry and another on SCS Group’s smoke extract system at The Star and Garter. Luke isn’t free just yet, though, featuring in news articles I am still working on. I really need to learn to just let go…