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Blog: Rob Symington on why his challenging commute is worth it

So, after the inevitable ‘so what do you want to do with your life?’ questioning that immediately follows university, I found myself clueless. My degrees in the Humanities didn’t push me towards a specific path like a Nursing or Midwifery degree would, so I faced these questions with bewilderment, rather than answers.

However, all I was really looking for was a field in which was diverse, where I could learn, not be bored because the job is different every day and be constantly busy. So, after quite extensive conversation with my parents, my Dad (who is also in FM) suggested I enter his world, as it ticks the boxes of what I was looking for and wow, does it!

Although he never said how tedious his commute to work was... At the minute, I’m currently commuting from Portsmouth Harbour to London, which is a level of monotony that I wouldn’t wish for anyone to endure. The time can be filled easily, usually by reading about 20 pages of a Tom Clancy thriller and then falling asleep. Waking up to find the train is packed like a can of sardines, and you aren’t even at Guildford – now that’s not a nice wake up call. Then, for the guard to announce: surprise, it’s running late!

Once in work it all changes, I realise I am starting at the bottom in facilities management, but this will provide me with the basics from which to grow, so for now, I’ve been setting up a soft-play areas for Family Day, to taking fire extinguishers for a walk (they needed to be moved from one office to another, so I put them in a trolley and walked them over), to moving desks and chairs around in a small-scale rearrangement – it’s bring it on.

Each day is different, I can assure anyone wanting a challenging, diverse career this could be it - There has been no monotony of sitting at a desk, answering the same type of questions for 8 hours, then coming back and doing the same thing again the next day. It is a great mix of hands on, get ‘stuck in’ and desk work; and every day, I never know what to expect.

I have been given the autonomy and responsibility to manage a little part of the day to day running of the office and have been given responsibility for stationary, snacks and post – but from little acorns, great FM’s grow.

I am thoroughly enjoying the interaction and love the fact that I am accountable. I’m trying to learn as much as possible and get involved with as many different things as I can, I want to learn and become a fully qualified facilities manager and to start progressing in this wonderful profession.

Overall yeah, I’ve had an incredibly varied first 6 weeks. The job has been busy, I’ve learnt a lot, I am excited about future. I work with a great supportive team, both at Pareto and the client.

Thank you for the opportunity Pareto, I’ve loved every minute so far!

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