Meet Gabriel Predescu, a Project Manager at PiLON whose life story reads like an inspiring novel. From a promising football player to a Social Housing professional at PiLON, his journey is an inspiring tale of resilience and determination. Gabriel has been at PiLON for two years now and looks after three Fire Safety projects for Southern Housing and Thrive Homes.
Early Ambitions and Setbacks:
Gabriel’s early years were marked by his passion for football, playing for a top team in Romania, Dynamo Bucharest, akin to England’s Arsenal or Manchester United. However, a series of injuries before age 18 put an abrupt end to his promising football career. This setback, though challenging, paved the way for a new chapter.
A New Beginning:
With just £25 and a suitcase of clothes to his name, Gabriel embarked on a new journey in England, arriving at 24 years of age to finish his last year of university studying Engine Design at Southampton. This bold move was a testament to his courage and ambition. His humble beginnings in a new country shaped a resilient character, ready to tackle the challenges ahead.
Professional Evolution at PiLON:
Transitioning from a 15-year career in the motor trade to construction, Gabriel brought a wealth of management experience to PiLON. Starting as an Assistant Site Manager, he swiftly demonstrated his capabilities and, within two years, advanced to the role of a Project Manager. This progression is a story of ambition, adaptability and continuous learning, showcasing his ability to thrive in diverse environments.
A Day in the Life:
As a Project Manager, Gabriel manages multiple projects with a pragmatic approach. His days are filled with strategic decision-making, client interactions, and hands-on problem-solving, all managed with a positive, straightforward and effective style.
One of Gabriel’s primary challenges is securing timely access to properties. This task requires meticulous coordination with residents and adaptability in managing unforeseen delays, ensuring that projects stay on schedule. The team often work in challenging conditions, such as being in lofts for extended periods. These environments can be difficult, with issues like confined spaces, spiders, and even rats – the job is certainly not everyone’s idea of fun.
Finding Fulfilment in Success and Growth:
For Gabriel, the essence of reward in his role comes from various facets. He finds great satisfaction in receiving continuous, positive feedback from clients and residents, especially being recognised as a standout among over 40 contractors. Additionally, he sees personal growth and professional qualifications, such as several fire inspection certifications and an NVQ L7 Diploma in Construction Senior Management, as significant achievements. Equally rewarding for him is contributing to the development of his colleagues, guiding and training them towards success. Gabriel also takes pride in the collective achievements of the company, such as receiving awards, which affirm that he is part of a thriving, successful organisation.
Team Recognition and Motivation:
Gabriel is keenly aware of the hard work and dedication his team members exhibit. To show his appreciation, he often treats the team to a burger at a local café or lets them finish early on a Friday, giving them extra time with their families. These gestures of recognition for a job well done extend beyond merely boosting morale; they foster a culture of mutual respect and appreciation within his incredibly hard-working team, a team so dedicated that they would willingly work seven days a week if they could.
Gabriel’s leisure time has evolved with his growing family responsibilities. While he once enjoyed skiing and clay pigeon shooting, his role as a devoted father to two boys has transformed him into their enthusiastic taxi service. He supports their diverse interests, which include swimming, scouts, and piano. Family activities, such as walking and days out in London, are now his preferred ways to unwind.
Looking to the Future:
Gabriel’s aspirations at PiLON are grounded in his commitment to excellence and growth. He continues to contribute significantly to the company’s success, with an eye on future opportunities that challenge and inspire him.
Acknowledging Supportive Colleagues:
Gabriel’s achievements at PiLON are bolstered by the support from colleagues like Matt McDonough, Vlad Nedelcu, and Sid Clark. He values Matt and Vlad for their understanding and assistance in challenging times. Sid, in particular, stands out for his calm demeanour and reliability. Gabriel deeply values Sid’s expertise in health and safety, a critical aspect of their projects. Sid’s consistent availability and willingness to provide guidance have been instrumental in helping Gabriel navigate complex situations, ensuring safety and compliance in their work.
A special note of thanks goes out to the Fire Safety team at PiLON. Their hard work, expertise, and dedication are pivotal to the success of the projects and the safety they bring to residents. Gabriel’s leadership is complemented by the strength and commitment of this team, who together make a significant impact in the field of fire safety.