Are you a ballsy go-getter or an arty sensitive type? Do you get up at the crack of dawn or prefer a leisurely start? Are you mostly inspiration, calculation or perspiration? Try our quick quiz to determine whether you’re really cut out for a career as a contractor.
Q1 What’s your greatest strength at work?
a Unbridled creativity.
b A gimlet eye for detail.
c Nerves of steel.
Q2 You’re about to start on site, and the client asks for a last-minute redesign. What’s your reaction?
a Great! Perhaps now we can incorporate those flying buttresses we talked about.
b Okay, but it’ll cost you.
Q3 What’s the best you hope for from a project?
a Realisation of a vision and due recognition of my genius.
b That it comes in under budget.
c That it won’t bankrupt the company.
Q4 Can you get in for a 9am meeting?
a Unlikely. I don’t usually get in before 10am, but I don’t mind staying late.
b No problem. I’m leaving on the dot of 5.30 though.
c Can we make it any earlier? I’ve got to get to the site. What about Saturday?
Q5 How long does it take you to tie a bow-tie?
a 7.23 seconds – perfected over many years of dedicated practice.
b Hard to say without more precise information – it depends on the dimensions of the bow-tie and the exact specifications of the material.
c Wouldn’t know mate, I don’t do ties.
Q6 Are you a risk taker?
a Well, some of my designs have been described as “cutting edge”.
b Certainly not – heaven forfend.
c Is there any other way to be?
Q7 What’s your ideal building project?
a Unlimited budget and a very adventurous client.
b A shed with no windows – nice and simple.
c The same shed but with very reliable subcontractors and a margin of more than 1%.
Q8 Going anywhere nice on holiday this year?
a A week in Barcelona – wonderful city, so inspiring.
b A nice relaxing 10 days in the south of France with the family.
c A couple of weeks on the Costa del Sol.
How did you do?
Hmm … Are you sure you’re really cut out for the contracting game? These drawings are fabulous, but you do realise you’re going to have to actually build them don’t you? Alright, if you still fancy having a go, meet me tomorrow morning at 7am on the site – we’ll soon crush all that idealism. And please, leave your bow-tie at home …
You demonstrate an admirable grip on the figures but I’m not sure you’ve got the temperament for the daredevil, seat-of-your-pants life of a main contractor. Perhaps you’d be happier with a less risky, more hands-off role – have you considered quantity surveying?
You’re in, mate. Stock up on the Nurofen, charge your mobile, Blackberry and pager and kiss your sanity goodbye. Welcome to the exciting world of the main contractor …