Courtney Dowling – Life in the Bull Pen

April 19, 2021

It would come as no shock to most people that the mining and engineering industries are male-dominated. At CADDS Group we have a genuine dedication to creating opportunities for women to succeed just as much in the industry. One of our most recent examples of bringing down barriers for women is that of our team member, Courtney.
Our Projects team was excited and proud to announce that Courtney had put herself forward for the newly opened role of Project Manager. Moving into this position, Courtney will focus her efforts on ensuring projects are delivered successfully through the West region. She will work to ensure that CADDS are delivering projects on time and budget whilst managing client expectations.

As a training and development role, Courtney will receive guidance and support from the immediate team during the transitional period. We are excited to be celebrating this step up for our newest Project Manager as a whole Group.
Leading up to her transition, we got the chance to sit down with Courtney and ask her a few questions about the role, what it means to her, and her message to other women in the industry.

What did you start off doing at CADDS?

I was 24 when I started back in February of 2015 as a project administrator. I was given a 2-week handover from my colleague Mel, who was preparing to go to site for a client project. I was able to adapt quickly to the role and soon became responsible for Travel and Project admin across the business.

What is the role you are doing now?

I am now a Project Manager, with my focus being around the projects for the West region of our client operations. I am responsible for managing and maintaining these projects.

What made you want to take on this new role?

I am someone who continually likes to be challenged, I don’t like to coast through work, I like the bar to be set high, and I like to go beyond it.
After completing a challenging secondment role with Rio Tinto, as the Team Lead for Document Control, I felt the need for a similar role, with just as much reward. I absolutely love managing people and being responsible for a team however, that wasn’t a current option at the time I moved back into CADDS.
I had to think outside of the box. Yes, Project Management was a little ambitious of me, but I like to believe I can achieve anything if given the opportunity to. I voiced my interest, and it has now paid off.

What are your main goals in this role?

I am a very systematic person, and I love to simplify everything and anything I can. I would like to introduce some clear processes within the team so we can unify the way we tackle and manage projects across the group. This might seem a little ‘unnecessary’ to some, but for me, it is crucial and will not only benefit myself but will benefit the Group. I want to bring everyone together, agree and concur.

What are your goals for your career?

‘Goal-ly’, that’s a hard question, pun intended!
I am far from where I want to be, but I am heading in the right direction. As I said above, I love to manage people and would love to manage a team again when the opportunity arises. That would be my end goal.

How is CADDS supporting you through the transition?

Currently, I am in a six-month transition phase for the position. Our two Project Superintendents, Dom and Jared, are both mentoring me with the technical side of the projects. However, I do feel I am also teaching them a thing or two. I have a genuine belief that collectively we not only make an effective team, but we are all learning how to improve.
I have always subscribed to the idea that the best way to learn is to be thrown in the deep end. I am often scared, but for me, that is how I have worked throughout my time here at CADDS.

What would you say to women who are often put off by such male-dominated industries?

For me personally, it has never been an issue, I’m more inclined to work and prefer to work for a male dominate industry.
That aside, I believe in backing your ability and own what you do! Have a voice and be heard. You will always the choice, either, be the professional you want to be or let people scare you away from it. Shape your career for what you want it to be and give it your all to achieve it.
There you have it, sometimes you just need to throw everything at the opportunity! Congratulations Courtney, we cannot wait to see all you achieve.

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