Jenni Sorvisto has a memorable year ahead of her. At the beginning of this year, Sorvisto started working as Site Manager at the As Oy Vantaan Aventuriini construction site. Aventuriini is Sorvisto’s first “own” site.
“I’m enthusiastic, perhaps even over-enthusiastic,” Sorvisto says when asked to describe her feelings at the moment. “The site management has just arrived on the construction site and earthworks will begin at the end of January. There is also tension in the air but in a good way.”
Sorvisto has now worked for YIT for five years: at first for the Business premises segment, then for the Housing segment as Site Supervisor for Valonkortteli in Tikkurila, Tripla in Pasila and Aviapolis in Vantaa, among other sites.
“I completed my Master Builder studies at the University of Applied Sciences in 2017, in other words: during my YIT career, I have studied and worked at the same time. Work and studies complemented each other well as I could use my construction sites as examples in my university assignments. That period of time was certainly tough, too, and I couldn’t have made it without my spouse, who took over the main responsibility for home and children.”
Sorvisto loves working with her hands and her original profession was furniture carpenter.
“I completed my studies in 2009, but I couldn’t find a job in this niche sector. So, I started construction carpenter studies and after a traineeship, I started working for Rakennuspetäjä on an apartment building construction site. From there, I came to YIT.”
Leadership and people skills are important in the new position
Being appointed a Site Manager has been Sorvisto’s goal since she decided to start studying to become a Master Builder.
“You could say that was part of my 10-year plan – however, I reached my goal nearly five years ahead of time,” she admits. “I haven’t set my next goal yet as I am now in my dream profession. In addition, I have been thinking about taking a small break from studying,” Jenni says, referring also to the one-year Site Manager specialist degree (RET) course she completed last spring.
It is left to be seen how well Sorvisto, characterising herself as an eternal student, can keep her promise. Thus far, hunger for knowledge and the desire to grow professionally have always attracted her to new challenges.
For her University of Applied Sciences thesis, Sorvisto created Site Supervisor guidelines for work phase planning. These guidelines will certainly be helpful in her current job, too, although the new Site Manager estimates that up to 80% of her current duties consist of office work and communications with different stakeholders, such as designers.
“Compared to this, working as a Site Supervisor was technical in a different manner as well as more focused on work phases. What is now emphasised is leadership and people skills and managing the big picture. A Site Manager must also know how to step back, give Site Supervisors the peace and freedom to carry out the work phase independently and in a way just act on the background to direct the construction site towards the right direction.”
A team player does better than a hardworking loner
As a supervisor and leader, Sorvisto finds herself more a leader of people than a leader of things.
“I get along with everyone, which is important in this industry. Sometimes I still come across the persistent idea that the construction industry would be more suitable for men than for women, which is certainly not true. This is not a question of gender but of personality type. People doing well in this industry enjoy some pressure, having many balls in the air.”
“On a construction site, a team player does better than a hardworking loner, which is only logical when you think of the amount of knowledge and skills the colleagues possess. It would be mad not to make a good use of it,” Sorvisto says.
When asked to describe YIT as an employer, Sorvisto uses the familiar words: stable, large, reliable.
“The thing I like most about YIT is that it offers a wide variety of jobs and sites where to work and develop. That’s important.”