Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Luke Drea from Teagasc to give some advice for people considering this job:

Luke Drea

Event Rider


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Luke Drea
The most important thing to keep in mind is that this is more of a life style than a job.

Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.

Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
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Hint: CRH plc

Guidance Councellor.

The Guidance Councellor in my secondary school directed me towards engineering after he examined my aptitude results in science and maths.

He encouraged me to apply for a course in Sligo I.T. as he believed it to be a good course with great opportunities.

My Grandfather

My grandfather was a Quarry Manager who worked with Roadstone for 30 years in Donegal. He encouraged me to do engineering and always allowed me to be involved in hands on jobs on his farm. He influenced me in my decision to apply for a job with Irish Cement as he believes that CRH are an excellent company to work for.

He has guided me in my career decisions so far.

My Mentor

Irish Cement runs a mentoring scheme in both its plants. My mentor has been paramount in my desicions regarding my career so far and has given me excellent advice. He has encouaged me to focus on my long term goals and has guided me through minor issues. He continues to advise me as my career advances.

Who said this? Find out here: go

Career Exploration

When it comes to being in full-time employment, it is likely that you will spend as much time 'on the job' as with your family and friends, so it makes sense to do something that makes your heart sing. Therefore, investing some time in self-assessment is time well spent.

Self-Assessment - What's the value of it?

From a career development point of view, self-exploration is primarily about identifying your talents, strengths and weaknesses. It helps you to identify what motivates you and to understand what your hopes and aspirations are, using this information to point you in a particular career direction.

Start the process by completing some self-assessment exercises. None are going to provide you with a complete picture, but they all provide some perspective and can be used to open your mind to new possibilities, or to simply confirm what you already know (that’s not a bad thing, as it can increase your confidence in that area).

The process will help you to identify occupations that include things you really like to do. In the long run, you are likely to be more fulfilled, and you will probably be more productive too. Think about the impact having a career you enjoy would have on your personal life too - how it would affect your family, your friends, your social life?

Interest Test - Why do an interest test or interest profiler?

Choosing a career direction that takes into account the sort of things you are interested in makes good sense. This ensures that you will be motivated as you have a natural inclination already in a particular area.

You can take the Careers Portal Interest-Profiler (CPIP) to measure the relative strengths of your interests.

This instrument also provides you with a free printable report containing a summary of your career interests, along with some occupations that match your interest profile.

You will need to login to take this test as your results will be kept for you in your Career File.

FAQs - I did one in school - why should I do it again?

Interest tests will give you different results at different times in your life, based on where you are along life’s journey. Chances are that you no longer like the same things you liked a few years ago - you may have learned to like vegetables since then, or have shifted your allegiance from Leeds United to Liverpool (!!!). In the same way, your career interests may or may not have shifted and changed.

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There is a shortage of experienced people in these occupations in Ireland at the moment. For further information on Labour Market trends, go to our Labour Market section.

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