THE DAMAGE PREVENTION industry is growing rapidly due to technological advancements in the utility industry and population growth. Each year, seasoned professionals within the industry are retiring, thereby creating a void that is getting harder and harder to fill. It is high time we start training our emerging leaders and motivating more young professionals to get involved in the damage prevention world.
As a young professional myself, and hoping to find like-minded individuals within the industry, I have been working hard on creating a group with the primary intention of bringing young professionals together to create an avenue where they can connect with peers and mentors to gain expertise in different fields of interest. I think this is a great opportunity for industry veterans to share their expertise and motivate the next generation to carry on their legacies.
I conducted a survey in November 2018 to measure the interest level for this type of initiative within our industry and received some promising results.
Based on the results received, the CGA 811 Excavation Safety Conference & Expo has provided space for a roundtable discussion on Tuesday, March 26, in room 19 of the Tampa Convention Center. In this session, we will kick off the development of this group by discussing the survey results, determining the parameters for the group, forming a group leadership team and discussing plans for the future.
According to Chris Sherrick, UTTO Product Manager, “This initiative is a great first step and will encourage a collaborative and fresh look at Damage Prevention. Mentorship will prove to be invaluable and will allow rising leaders to fast-track their potential to move the needle forward, but I think this is just half the battle. Look around CGA events – young professionals are sparse to fill the gaps that industry veterans are starting to leave behind. As a collective, we need to understand how we can make our industry more attractive to younger talent and invest in its future success.”
Sherrick strongly supports the development of this group and has graciously accepted the offer to co-moderate the round table discussion with me. If you would like to get involved, or have any questions about this group, reach out to me at Sundar@emailir.com.
This will be a self-run group for young professionals, built by participants with guidance from seasoned industry leaders and not governed by another entity. We invite everyone to participate in this discussion on March 26 and help build the future.
“MENTORING ALLOWS THE EXPERIENCED PROFESSIONALS BOTH THE OPPORTUNITY TO GIVE BACK TO THE RISING STARS OF THE DAMAGE PREVENTION INDUSTRY, AS WELL AS PAY IT FORWARD TO THE FUTURE LEADERS OF TOMORROW.” -DWIGHT KLEIN, JULIE, INC.
Sundara Ganeshan is a project manager with Infrastructure Resources, LLC. He has been actively working to develop this group since early 2018.