Interview with Felice (57), senior construction manager in the Overhead Lines business unit at EQOS Energie Luxembourg
Felice has been working for EQOS Energie for eight years. As senior construction manager, he is responsible for the smooth running of a large number of overhead line projects in Luxembourg, Belgium and France. Having started his career as a driver, he is in charge of about 50 employees today. That is likely one of the reasons why “monotony” is a foreign word to him.
Felice, how do you become a senior construction manager?
Actually, it’s very simple: You have to love your work, be able to handle constant change well and enjoy working together with other people. Of course, you have to gather experience over the course of your career: on various construction sites, in different areas and ultimately – as in my case – you may also have to change locations in order to advance at the right company. I began working as a driver and fitter 28 years ago in France, worked my way up to become a foreman and construction manager, and then worked many years in different projects in the field of overhead lines. In 2010, I joined EQOS Energie as a construction manager, and for about three years I have been responsible for construction sites in Luxembourg, Belgium and Eastern France in the function of senior construction manager. However, what I find most important is having respect for other people and their performance, because you can only advance as a team.
You have to love your work, be able to handle constant change well and enjoy working together with other people.
You have also collaborated on the Flamanville nuclear power plant. What was special about that?
Saying that I collaborated is a bit of an overstatement. If anything, we just made a small contribution to the greater whole. They have been building a new reactor of the European type there for many years, and we worked on the wiring. However, compared to other projects, the construction site environment was very sophisticated. There were many external workers who worked on site at the same time, and we had to overcome several technical obstacles. In one case, we had to use a lifting platform to install a self-supporting protective structure for a suspended wire to prevent it from falling on the building. But everything worked out in the end and we were able to complete the project on time.
This sounds like a challenging job. How do you handle stress?
Of course, the stress level is very high at times, because ultimately I, as the senior construction manager, get hit with all the problems that arise on the construction sites. Therefore, the most important thing is efficient work planning: Every Monday I first take care of organisational issues, do the weekly planning, clarify who will be absent and how we can best make substitutions. From time to time, I visit the construction sites and obtain information on site. The work is so diverse that you don’t even notice how time passes. But those are precisely the challenges I enjoy: Every day is different. There is no such thing as monotony.