Megan Dimozantos, owner of Pocket Rocket Building Rotorua, recently made the career change to building after 17 years working in corporate leadership. She shares with us her story…

It all started several years back when she tackled her own home renovation. The success of her renovation led to several friends enlisting her to do their various projects. With a few jobs under her belt she began to realise she wasn’t only good at building, but she really enjoyed it – “I’m a really outdoorsy person and being physical is something I really enjoy”.

After lots of thought and careful planning, Megan made the decision at the end of last year to go out building full-time. Leaving behind the safety of what she knew in the corporate world, for the unknown world of a self-employed tradesperson.

So far, so good. Megan has had a steady flow of referral work, surprising herself with the number of jobs she has secured through her contacts and word of mouth around Rotorua. In particular, through her involvement in the mountain biking community.

She signed up to Builderscrack early on to help get jobs, “it’s been a great way to fill the gaps and reach outside Rotorua for business”. A tool she’s aware may become more important as the referral work slows up.

Her thoughts on women working in the trades? – Megan is looking forward to the day when hiring a female builder, either as a homeowner or an employer, isn’t thought of as “progressive” but normal. To get there, she believes it’s important for women to see other women working in the trades, inspiring more and more to follow suit, eventually resulting in a normalisation within the industry.

Advice to other women entering the trades? – “Surround yourself with supportive encouraging people”, in particular seeking out a mentor in the industry. Megan herself has a building friend, and a brother in law who she can openly, and non-judgmentally, discuss all aspects of the job with.

A practical tip for anyone thinking of switching careers like her – “stock up on trade quality tools while you’re still working and have the money coming in”.

Her verdict on her career change? – “I work harder but I love it. I enjoy being accountable and really enjoy being super busy. A lot of the time in the corporate world you find yourself doing things you know are never going to make much of a difference to anyone or anything. Everything I do now has a purpose, and will eventually materialise into something someone enjoys”.

The benefits of being her own boss is another aspect she is relishing – “I’m loving being able to make decisions about how much work I take on, how I manage my time, what jobs I do when, and being in control of the way I do things”.

Builderscrack thanks Megan for taking part and sharing her story.