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Tom Lowther

Why did working at Method appeal to you?

 I was looking for a small, friendly company. I didn’t really know in which career direction I was heading, I just wanted to do something with sustainability and the environment. I’ve started my specialism in embodied carbon, but know there’s lots of potential to move into other sustainability areas, such as BREEAM and SAP, or even a secondment to another team.

What happened at your interview?

 I was asked about what environmental improvements to a building I’d make, and quizzed on the potential impacts of certain design ideas. A question which threw me a bit, which as someone who didn’t know anything about construction until I joined, was getting told to look at a wall in my house and describe what was in it. The interviewers (and now my colleagues) were very friendly and really sold working for the company – they talked about all the social activities which Method hold.

Main responsibilities / Typical day

I am responsible for the day-to-day management of our embodied carbon modelling. My typical day involves usually three to four projects, and perhaps a bit of time to do some training. If I’m not modelling the environmental impacts of a building, I’m liaising with design teams on obtaining information or advising about potential changes they could make to improve a building.

Recently, I’ve been working on developing some CPDs about embodied carbon, and thinking about how we can develop our services further. I regularly talk to my line manager and other internal project managers to let them know both how I’m doing, and how the projects are doing. I also help train up other team members on embodied carbon and answer any queries they might have.

    Consultant, Energy & Sustainability

    Miles Chermside-Sergison

    What do you enjoy about your job?

    I have a lot of independence in my role, but I know that if I have any questions or queries, there will always be someone around to help. I really enjoy the social activities such as the sports day, pub trips, and even go-karting with my colleagues, and this has really helped me make friends when moving to a new area.

    Challenging aspects

    I think one of the most challenging aspects was taking on a lot of responsibility very quickly. It wasn’t planned, but I’m grateful that Method thought I was up to the task.

    I’ve also found living far from home difficult at first, but I think the working environment Method has created has certainly aided me in making some firm friends now.

    Skills/qualifications learnt at University that you use in your job?

    I have a bit of an unusual combination of qualifications. My master’s degree which directly helps me in the role is in Environmental Assessment and Management. My bachelor’s degree was in Politics with International Relations, and I find this helps a lot when trying to understand various policies and the reasoning behind them.

    Training you receive as part of your job

    In addition to furthering my embodied carbon knowledge, I’m starting to be trained up in aspects of BREEAM, so I can help the assessors in my team. I’ve also recently got a CSCS card, which allows me access to certain construction sites. I like to attend engineering CPDs as well, which aren’t directly relevant to my role, but help me to expand my broader knowledge and skillset.

    Where do you see yourself in the future?

    I’d certainly like to become chartered in the near future, and potentially return to academia part-time with a PhD.

    Your piece of advice to anyone thinking of going into sustainability

    I’d say be both open-minded and persistent when looking as to where to start your future career. I knew nothing about construction and engineering until I started here, but decided to give it a shot and apply anyway. I think my “unusual” degree combinations was a disadvantage when I applied with some employers, but fortunately, it was a benefit when applying to Method – so don’t be put off if you don’t 100% fit the standard mould.