A Day in the life at CPUK – Estimating Manager, Alexis Pendleton

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18th June 2019

In celebration of Pride Month, Alexis Jayne Pendleton, Estimating Manager here at CPUK Group, sat down with our marketing team to talk about her journey as a transwoman in the construction industry and to share some of her proud moments she’s experienced so far in her career…


Alexis Pendleton

Hi there! Can you introduce yourself for us?

Hiya, I’m Alexis Pendleton, often known as Lexi, and I’m the Estimating Manager here at CPUK. I started working for a civil engineering company, although, after a year I moved over to the construction side when I joined here and I’ve been working my way up ever since.


What brought you to CPUK and how long have you been in your current role here?

I joined CPUK in its early years and being their first trainee, it was a learning experience for all of us. It had a wonderful family feel to it which I am pleased to see that after 15 years still exists today.

I spent 10 years out on site in the thick of it and studying for my quantity surveying degree. The past 5 years has seen me move into the in the office, estimating new bids and managing the team here.


What does an average day at work involve for you?

I like to get in early to get set for the day ahead, check my emails and a couple of coffees before starting the main day ahead at 8 am.

The rest of the day either consists of the management side of things such as organising staff and resources, reviewing the exciting new opportunities, finding efficiencies and better ways of doing things.

Otherwise, I will be estimating new projects. I love the variety of schemes we get involved in and it always keeps you on your toes.


Can you tell us a bit more about your experience as a trans-woman in the construction industry? How has CPUK supported your journey?

I’ve had a really positive experience in the last couple of years. I was worried that I might not be taken seriously or people asking questions, however, it has been completely normal. CPUK has really helped with communicating to our staff at the beginning and I always feel like they ‘have my back’


Do you have any special or proud moments that you’d like to tell us about?

Earlier this year I was approached by the Lancashire Chamber of Commerce who asked me to do a Speech on International Women’s Day for inspiring women in construction. At various times over the past two years, our managing director has received emails from several of our clients commending my hard work and professionalism and that CPUK should be proud to have someone like me working for them.


Have there been any obstacles that you’ve had overcome?

Actually, I am very happy to say that I have not had to overcome any barriers at work. I feel that I am taken as seriously now than I did before and I have not been held back in any manner which means a lot to me.


What changes do you think are needed in the construction industry to make it possible for trans people and others from the LGBTQ community to be open and comfortable?

Hopefully more visibility from companies and staff like this, will help show how diverse companies can be will help others be more confident with their true self. Another would be companies understanding that a happier and more diverse workforce can lead to better performance.


What are some of the best things about your job?

Working with like-minded people, being challenged to better myself. I take a lot of pride in my works and it’s nice to be with others that do the same.

I also love the opportunity to spot talent and inspire others. Several members of my staff have proved that they are far more capable than the roles that they started in. I am proud of Jen Eccles who has just graduated with us after five years university, Lauren Weedall who moved up into business development and Amy Hankinson who has moved up into document and data management.


What advice would you give to those in the LGBTQ community within the construction industry?

Be yourself! People are more welcoming and supportive that you may think. You will also feel so much better for being yourself which in turn makes you a more productive member of staff too.


Do you have any advice for young people entering the industry?

Be prepared to work hard, you are not doing your employer a favour by just being there. Be professional, respectful and working hard will give you the best chance to succeed.


What inspires you every day? Do you have any words of wisdom for our readers?

Arnold Schwarzenegger did a great speech and one of the key things that stays with me is ‘have a clear vision and work your ass off’. I think if you live by this then you can’t go far wrong.


Tell us something unusual about you?

As part of my eco efforts to live more sustainably, I now make many of my own clothes.


Any hobbies or interests?

Gaming, sewing, listening to music, especially vinyl, audiobooks, although, most of all I enjoy spending time with my wife and children.


Finally, if you weren’t in your current role and could have any job, what would it be and why?

Either a race car driver or a stay at home mum.

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Working with and for CPUK will be a pleasure!