What made you want to step up into your Senior Role?
Whilst working in a male dominated sector with more experienced male team members, I was often told I’m 'not ready for that position' or I wouldn’t enjoy it or 'I’m not ready' for it. As someone with dyslexia, I allowed them comments and my imposter syndrome to hold me back until I did some work on myself personally.
How did you get to where you are now?
I always say I fell into my role! I spontaneously applied for a health & Safety secondment which I really enjoyed. The housing association I worked for then decided to bring in internal Fire risk assessors and poached me back from my new role. I was their 1st in house fire risk assessor and I fell in love with the role from then.
It has been a rocky road though. I faced some experiences during my period of joining another social housing provider for 6 weeks! my experiences with colleagues here often left me feeling humiliated and I eventually quit after 6 weeks. I immediately regretted leaving my previous long-term job as it felt safe, and I felt appreciated there. I eventually got my old job back and turned my pain into power! I pushed for the courses I wanted and ensured that I shadowed more qualified individuals. I also put myself out there instead of sitting in the corner taking the 'easy route'. This led to me challenging myself and finally having qualifications i need!!
What does your Senior Role Title actually involve?
To name a few responsibilities, I'm involved in:
Managing contracts and tenders
Conducting FRA’S and validating FRA
Being professional dealing with questions and sometimes challenges from clients
What is it like being a woman in a Senior position and how does it feel?
I feel we still always have to prove ourselves in the room to be taken seriously. If I turn up to a job looking any part feminine which to me is everyday wear \makeup lipstick hair done (that’s the norm) for some, a client has gone ‘oh I didn’t think your look like that.’
Manifest the life you want! I went to the Women in fire safety awards in 2021 and I manifested being part of that.”
Hey Ladies, my name is Stephanie Rampton and I'm a 35 year of single mother of two wonderful children who inspire me daily.
I left school at the age of 15 with no qualification (due to me being afraid of failing). I then worked in various roles from the ages of 15- 20 before moving towns and starting my journey in the housing sector. I worked for one company for 15 years moving from role to role whilst pushing through rejections I encountered.
I've worked in the fire safety industry since 2014, however I officially left my full time role April 2022 and founded two companies. First is a Fire safety consultancy and second is non-profit company focusing on women empowerment within the industry and resident engagement focusing on the connection between people in the community (like me) and the disconnection between housing providers/building owners and the fire safety world.
As someone in your role, how do you deal with challenges?
Although I’m very much alone within my role, once you’ve connected with the right people in the industry it can become a great community and I say a problem shared is a problem halved. My biggest challenge at the moment is running my business solo, with a new addition to my family (9-week-old baby). However, I really do enjoy my role and knowing I’m keeping people safe keeps me motivated.
What advice would you give a young woman aspiring to progress to senior level in the industry?
Do it, don’t let no one tell you its unattainable or you’re not ready, apply anyway, if you’re not successful turn the disappointment into power! Do that course, get a mentor, get a coach and keep going!
Manifest the life you want! I went to the Women in fire safety awards in 2021 and I manifested being part of that. I was nominated and shortlisted in the final for 2022 influencer of the year - I didn’t win but coming from a place were no one knew me to being nominated by someone from Linkedin was a massive incentive to keep going and never give up!