Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Elaine McGarrigle from CRH plc to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Elaine McGarrigle

Mechanical Engineer

CRH plc

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  Elaine McGarrigle

The most important skill that a person in my position can have is communication.

One needs to be able to communicate effectively with people of all levels in order to do a days work. I think that this is the most important quality, to be able to fit in well with people, everyone from the operators to the senior management, one needs to be able to read them and how best to communicate with them.

An interest in basic engineering and in the heavy machine industry.

It is important to realise that working as a mechanical engineer in Irish Cement does not generally involve sitting at your desk all day. It involves alot of hands on, on-site work so a person needs to be prepared to get their hands dirty.

Another quality that is important is to be willing to learn. Even after a number of years in college, one needs to be eager to learn the ins and outs of a new environment; how cement is made, what equipment is involved, what generally goes wrong and how it is fixed.

Everyone will help and teach you but you need to open your mind and be prepared to take it all in.

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Realist?
Realist 
Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.

Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
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The World of Work

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The World of Work

The world of work is changing. Employers are facing the challenges of the global marketplace, where competition is continuously increasing, and keeping a business economically viable requires constant manoeuvring of resources.

Tomorrows' workers need to be able to manoeuvre with equal, if not more agility, than our predecessors. We need to apply our current learning only as long as is necessary, and then move on to meet new challenges. Lifelong learning is the new mantra - the new mindset required for our nation to survive economically into the next decade.

In this section we provide information on the world of work from the Irish context. We look at the most prominent industry sectors in terms of their general characteristics, the occupations that characterise them and the current employment outlook.

We also look in detail at some of Ireland's leading Organisations, the employers who operate within the various industry sectors. We look at what type of business they are involved in, what employment opportunities they offer, and how they go about recruiting people.

All organisations require the expertise and work provided by people in certain job roles, or occupations, in order to function. Many of us spend years of training to become competent in one of these occupations, as would a carpenter or accountant, for example. We have collected information on hundreds of occupations commonly found in Ireland and abroad and provide information on each in terms of their typical characteristics and the qualifications required to enter them.

Information on the broader picture of employment in Ireland is known as labour market information. In this area, we provide information on general trends of employment, including statistics on many occupations. We also provide links to information providing current research and commentaries.

Behind every occupation there are people - individuals who have made personal choices about their education, their lifestyle, their choice of jobs, and the career paths they see themselves fulfilling. We have interviewed people from all walks of life and from the length and breadth of the country to bring you their stories - about the choices they made, how and where they got their current job, the tasks they face each day, and what their plans are for developing their career.


 

Don't Confuse Your Work Life With Your Family Life

  

Your boss is not your parent and your co-workers are not your siblings. Remember that, and you'll avoid lots of unpleasant situations.