I only moved to the UK from South Africa in November 2022, so I didn’t know anything about ecology companies here.
I started to look at job adverts and saw Arbtech appearing on Google and LinkedIn quite a bit, leading me to poke around the people that worked there by looking at their LinkedIn profiles.
What struck me was the variety of people I saw, and their honest commenting and posting was so refreshing. Everyone seemed to be able to express themselves and not be a commercial cookie-cutter poster.
I was so excited to see the position open, but having minimal UK-based ecology experience, I was cautiously optimistic about being hired.
Arbtech was obviously my first choice because I wanted to work in ecology and based on their great benefits package, but it was the people and the culture that really got me excited.
How helpful everyone is!
The flexibility of working from home (or a coffee shop, or my garden in the sun) is epic, and knowing that I can contact anyone in the team if I have a question is great.
Everyone is honest and willing to help each other out.
I love spending time with friends and family.
I am a real homebody and am very content at home with my husband and cat.
I love being outdoors and enjoy going running or doing yoga at home. I used to do aerial dancing in South Africa, and I am looking at starting to do that again here in the UK.
I’m proud to say that I summited Kilimanjaro in 2017 and will hopefully have some more epic hikes in the future.
Don’t discount the impact of small steps.
Small amounts of progress add up! Even on days when you can’t give 100%, give what you can.
Also, don’t beat yourself up for having a bad day. I am a very results-oriented person and used to beat myself up if I took longer than expected on something.
Now, I always try my best, and if I have a bad day, I brush myself off and work harder tomorrow.
Guilt gets you nowhere; just do the work and move on.
I sadly haven’t been on any yet, but I’m really looking forward to going on my first social at Delamere Forest in September.
So many places!
At the top of my list, however, are Croatia, Greece and Spain.
Hopefully still at Arbtech and progressed up the ladder.
I was an intern in April, and by July, I’d become a graduate ecologist. Hopefully, in five years’ time, I’ll have some licences under my belt and be able to get involved with helping to mentor new interns.
I’d like to get back into hiking. I haven’t done any ‘big’ hikes since Kili in 2017, so I would like to plan for a peak and have something to train towards.
I’d also like to be a principal ecologist one day too. I’m keen to get really stuck into this job and learn as much as possible.
Jamie-Lee joined Arbtech in July 2023.
Meet the other members of our leading ecology and arboriculture team.