You’re inspired by different things on a day to day basis...it might be something funny my daughter says
I’m Lauren Cook and I’m a Town Planner.
What are your passions?
From a work perspective, I think my passion really lies in becoming involved in a project, any type of project really, but seeing it through from beginning to end. I like to be involved in the detail and the process, working with a wide range of people including members of the public and through public consultation exercises and getting to that point where you see a finished building or place on site.
Outside of work, my primary passions and interests probably revolve around my family and being able to spend as much time as possible with my daughter and my partner; getting outside, getting out in the open space, going for a nice walk in the woods or something like that. It’s just a bit of mindfulness really, to escape work and day to day life.
Who or what inspires you?
Because I think you’re kind of inspired almost by different things on a day to day basis, I wouldn’t say there was a particular individual who inspires me. It’s whatever moment you’re in – you can be inspired by the things that influence you within that and if it’s work, it might be a particular colleague who’s really enthusiastic about a project and that helps to bring you on board and increases your enthusiasm. In my personal life it might be something funny that my daughter says and that can be sort of inspirational for you.
How did you get to this point in your life?
Here right now in terms of my career, I think that it’s come through a series of different experiences and they have kind of shaped me, as an individual and as a planner, to understand what actually I really want out of my career. I think having started my career at Stride Treglown and moving away for a little while and then coming back, that’s really shown me what’s most important within my career and how I’ve come to be.
What are your experiences working here?
I think it’s such a friendly environment where you would never feel judged particularly or worried if you had an issue. It’s very open and you know that any issue be it work related or personal, you know who’s available to speak to – and that doesn’t mean necessarily your line manager but knowing that there’s a whole host of individuals that you could call upon to help you in any way.
Talk me through your day?
I spend probably the majority of my time at my desk. I might have a couple of meetings throughout the day. They tend to be quite informal with colleagues because most of my projects are working with architects within the organisation as opposed to external architects. So you might have the case of sitting down with them, talking through a particular issue or kick starting a new project or finalising some detail before a planning application goes in. There’s quite a lot of admin tasks involved day to day and quite a lot of report and email writing.
What are your aspirations?
I think I aspire to be more organised. From a work perspective, I just want to continue to grow in my current role. I think that I’ve got a lot to offer our team and it’s something that I just try to embrace daily and just be the best that I can be in what I’m doing.
What pressures do you face?
Work-life balance is a continual pressure. And being a Mum and a part-time employee with a desire to work on really interesting projects which command a lot of your time – so having to manage that on your days off is probably the biggest pressure that I face.
What’s your foundation for support?
Definitely my partner. At the end of the day, he’s the person that listens to what I’ve got to say and tells me to set it aside until the next day. So without him, I don’t think I would be able to function on a day to day basis in the way that I do.