downloadWhat industry do you work in and what exactly are your skills?

I work in the civil engineering and construction industry. I specialize in the construction of earth dam and my main duties are supervising the geological investigations on the site, supervising the tests on the engineering properties of soil, the reconditioning of clay material for the dam embankment and more.  A few of my skills are organising and developing work programs and method statements, computer literacy, people and project management, I am also a team player with the ability to learn fast.

What inspired you to get into this sort of industry?

My inspiration has drawn from my passion of field works and the relationship between wanting to practice this field of profession and my personality match perfectly. I also come from a background that has experience as a Geologist as well as a Miner.

nigerian-coat-of-arms-logo-5322-300x281What qualifications and experience did you have to gain In order to establish yourself and therefore become a professional within your industry?

I established myself and became a professional through attaining several higher academic qualifications and certifications in geotechnical engineering and project management. I additionally became a corporate member of the Nigerian Mining and Geosciences Society (NMGS).

What is the most challenging aspect within your field of work?

Notably among the challenges are managing and dealing machines, team of individuals with different backgrounds and behaviours, conflicting investigations and soil tests results.  All these challenges need to be intermarried and balanced in order to meet up with set targets and deliver results.

How do you manage and overcome these challenges?

I try to carry every challenge along and make every member of my team feel like an important stakeholder through effective communication.  I give them the credit for a job well done and take the blame when things fall short of expectations. I recognize the abilities of every individual in my team and encourage hard work. When results of investigations are conflicting, I ensure confirmations and proper supervision.

75556What has been the highlight of your career?

At my present organisation, Mimi’s Construction Company Limited, I am the site Manager of the construction for the anka earth dam project and I have surpassed expectations in the management of the project with regards to available resources and set targets of all tasks, operations and activities on site.

Another highlight was when I worked for Hassuni Engineering Services Limited for the reconstruction of Ingawa-Dallaje dam project as the site Geologist. I was responsible for the reconditioning of clay material for the embankment where my team and I were able to provide more than the daily usage. During this time I have never been under so much pressure thereby creating a wonderful atmosphere of productivity which lead to our recognition and therefore an award of the best team of the year 2010.

If somebody starts as a trainee / beginner within your line of work, what could they earn in salary?

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For a beginner, it ranges from 1.2 million Nigerian Naira ($7, 692) to 1.8 million Nigerian Naira ($11, 538) yearly. This largely depends on the organisation/employer.

What can this person expect to earn after 10 years of experience?

This also depends on the employer and the employee’s professionalism. Salary figures range between 3.6 million Nigerian Naira ($23, 076 USD) and 5.4 million Nigerian Naira ($34, 645USD) yearly.

Who is your role model and why?

I believe so much in my abilities, understanding and knowledge even though I relate with senior colleagues sometimes to resolve complicated situations professionally.  I always look up to myself and with this said, I see myself as my role mode.

What motivates you to work this hard?

The passion I have for construction works as a Geoscientist and the foresight in the bright future of the industry motivates me on a daily basis.

What is your outlook within your industry over the next 5 years?

In my hometown (Nigeria) the construction industry as a developing motivator is in hot demand and will continue to be.  Coupled with the Nigerian government aiming to resolve and improve engineering infrastructures and thereby delivering dividend of democracy to its citizens and other private Organisations investing in construction projects, the industry can only but thrives beyond 5 years.

I have the goal to become part of a corporate membership of the Council of Mining Engineers and Geoscientists (COMEG), Nigerian Association of Technologists in Engineering (NATE) and Council of Registered Engineers in Nigeria (COREN).

As you know, numerous African countries are being invested in due to their rich minerals. Which country within Africa do you think will be the next hot spot and why?

Nigeria because of the numerous untapped 34 solid minerals among which are lead, tantalite, gold, coal etc. that are abound in commercial quantity and the Nigerian government’s resolve to transform Nigeria’s minerals sector to an irresistible mining destination for global capital.

Additionally, Botswana is a relatively peaceful country with new discoveries in coal, enabling this country to compete as the next hot spot country in Africa.

Zambia is a hot spot now due to high global demand in copper.

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Seaman Ogbaji

Seaman Ogbaji