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United Kingdom / Transport / Head of economic and social development

Paul Hammond

One of Paul's favourite hobbies is golf. Here he is at The Open golf championship.
Paul at The Open golf championship.
Paul at The Open golf championship. One of Paul's favourite hobbies is golf. Here he is at The Open golf championship.
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"The best thing about my role is that I get to work with some of the sharpest minds in the world - including our young professionals."

Why did you decide to join Mott MacDonald?

I joined Mott MacDonald in 2010 when an agency approached me about a new role at the company. The more I found out, the more I was intrigued as I had never come across Mott MacDonald before. Here was this huge company, working on some of the UK’s and the world’s biggest infrastructure challenges and they wanted a bigger role for economic and social development. The ethical values were right for me as well, so here I am.

What is the best thing about your role?

I am the head of economic and social development and we tend to get involved at the front end of policy and major schemes. We are in a growth phase and we very often get asked this question when interviewing. The answer is the same from me every time. There are two best things. One is that I get to work with some of the sharpest minds in the world – including our young professionals and some of the world’s experts on for example climate change, international development, tunnels and health. The second point is really a subset of this – these people are working on huge projects of national and international significance and the opportunities to challenge yourself in this environment is fantastic.

How would you describe the culture of Mott MacDonald?

Three behaviours come to mind when considering the culture of Mott MacDonald. The first is professional – we seek to do things in the right way whatever the circumstances; if we can’t do it properly we don't do it or we find an associate with the best possible skills. The second is dynamic, certainly in my role I get to work in a fast moving environment where there are multiple challenges and opportunities on a daily basis. Thirdly, we are client focussed – we try to offer reliability, credibility and a real understanding to all of our clients.

How do you feel your career has progressed while working at Mott MacDonald?

I feel that I have been given an enormous career boost – perhaps a late opportunity given that is was 25 years into my working life when I joined. I now get to work on a diverse portfolio of projects, which has broadened my outlook and allowed me to the transfer my experience between client jobs. I have also learned a lot from my engineering colleagues about managing risk and how to do this at the same time as delivering for our clients and our shareholders.

How many years have you worked for Mott MacDonald, and what has been your proudest achievement to date?

I have been with the group for five years. There are many proud moments but possibly the best was the support we gave to Doncaster and Sheffield City Region in their successful bid for the ‘HS2 Rail Engineering College’ to be located (with a dual site in Birmingham) in the town. It was a great example of client and consultant working in harmony as one team and most of all the result will be a real step change for the employment and skills opportunities for local people.

Are you involved with any charities or do any volunteer work?

Mott MacDonald allows me to act as chairman of the registered social landlord (housing association) where I live.

If you could have lunch with any three people who would they be and why?

The first on the list would be my wife Louise, because I love her and she would never forgive me if there wasn’t a seat available for her. I am a huge fan of an old band called Graham Parker and the Rumour so he would be on the list. I would then add (if we are allowed dead people) Nelson Mandela just to experience his aura, intellect and quiet dignity.

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