Sean Tompkins, Chief Executive RICS

Fancy building the 2022 world cup stadium in Qatar? Or advising the Bank of England on subsidies for first time buyers? Perhaps being part of the Disaster Emergency Committee tasked with rebuilding Haiti following the earthquake?  Or working with the United Nations to ensure global food security?

The scale of these world challenges mean we need the brightest and the best to work in the UK and overseas and to do that means tapping into talent from diverse backgrounds and skillsets across the full breadth of the UK workforce. 

As the CEO of the world’s largest professional body, which sets and enforces standards across land, property, infrastructure and construction, Sean is passionate about diversity in all its forms. He is launching ‘Surveying the Future’, a new campaign to attract more talent to this rapidly changing industry.

“Organisations within the industry recognise that greater diversity of thought is likely to be their biggest business advantage in the future.  One of the problems is that influencers, such as teachers, parents and careers advisors are not aware of the broad range of surveying careers.”

President of RICS, Louise Brooke-Smith, firmly believes that one of the greatest challenges is the leadership deficit, particularly in a number of areas where skills and collaborative leadership styles excel:

 “Encouraging people to do better and achieve more can be helped significantly by making success visible, and that’s relevant across all career paths. Our campaign will really drive through change in this area and highlight a broad diversity of talented professionals who are shaping the world we live in.”

 Find your profession in the industry, visit: and follow us on Twitter: #SurveyingtheFuture

Case Study:

Lorna McHugh, BSc (Hons), MRICS,

Employer: Amey

Role:  Principal Project Manager, Amey, Manchester

 I joined Amey’s engineering and asset management consultancy in 2012.   I joined as a Commercial Manager on the £400m national Network Rail CEFA Contract, but have now moved into a Project Management role in rail.

 I was keen on maths and accountancy at school and when I was 16, I spent my summer holiday on a construction site in Greenwich, London building a residential village. I knew from that moment on that I wanted to become a Chartered Quantity Surveyor and I tailored my university course to achieve that outcome. 

 I followed a typically standard approach into the industry, but I know now that the cost of university fees is a lot more, so there are lots of students who are working and studying at the same time through day release. I think it’s an excellent way to gain loads of experience, which is useful for understanding ‘real life’ work skills whilst earning money.

  I would certainly encourage anyone who is good at problem-solving, creativity, time management, computer IT skills and communication to consider a career as a Quantity Surveyor or Project Manager but it’s such a varied industry that I would also think about what type of environment suits you best, whether that is dealing with the planning, design, costing or overall delivery of the project. It is a fun and exciting career where you can be delivering diverse projects and working for very unique clients each time.

 I have been an active RICS Member over the past 10 years. I joined the RICS Matrics committee soon after graduating from Manchester University and have acted as an ambassador for the profession: undertaking numerous visits to schools, colleagues and Universities across the North West.

 I am proud to represent surveyors and encourage others to think about entering the profession. My final piece of advice… Find something you enjoy and work hard at what you are good at – that is 50% of the battle.