Tuomo's story: all my actions lead to safe and healthy environments where people live and work

After the upper level of comprehensive school, I didn't really think about high school. I knew I wanted to work in a sector where I could get to work with my hands and as I was always building something, the construction sector felt like a good choice. So, vocational school it was. At the end of the vocational school, I and a few friends applied to study at a university of applied sciences. Then, when I was in military service, I was informed that I was accepted in due to a cancellation, and so I started my higher education.

Studying was really fun. I still keep in touch with my fellow students and some of them have become my lifelong friends. I didn't take my studies too seriously. I became all too familiar with parties and sauna evenings, especially during the first year. Summers I spend working and in foreman training. Somehow, I graduated and applied to become a foreman for a national actor.

After a while, I moved back to my hometown and the foreman work continued in another company. The company contracted all sorts of renovation works, especially on the principles of the Healthy House, so the indoor air repairs quickly became familiar. I remember how surprised I was, when we were on a building site, and the Healthy House consultant announced that there was dust on the site. In my head, in 2011, I thought that well of course there is, this is a building site! Of course, in proper construction this is no longer the case today. In 2019, the so-called "silica dust decree" was introduced, the aim of which is to reduce exposure to construction dust, for example. I was so interested in the topic that I started deepening my competence in a master's degree. I changed workplace to the contractor's side as commissioner's representative, and after completing the master's degree, I studied to become a Certified specialist for healthy buildings (RTA). That is a valued training in the construction sector for solving indoor air problems.

Construction and enhancement have always been my most important goals

When I served as the client's representative on the municipal side, my team was unbelievable and its approach to indoor air pollution was quite striking. There was a process for each challenge, and the issues were discussed closely with the user groups. One year, we even managed to get on a list that Yle published of municipalities in which, at the beginning of the semester, there were no pupils in temporary facilities. I think this is a good merit and asset for a municipality. Many may question the importance of a representative of a municipal property owner, but that role is necessary and aims to support the activities exercised in each property.

I applied for my current job partly thanks to my RTA course friends when I was offered the opportunity to work in the country's leading inspection body. The desire to have a positive impact on the construction sector and its development in Finland has been the driver and motivation behind my choices. Even in my studies, I have aimed to focus solely on matters of genuine interest to me. Comprehensive influencing interests me, and I want to make my small contribution to this large matter.

My greatest success is that thanks to my team members and my own work, the users of the properties are healthy and satisfied. Another success is that in summer 2020, I had the honour of taking part in the writing of the Property Usage and Maintenance part of the Government's Healthy Facilities 2028 key project. It was a good test for my property management skills. In every workplace, I have had good mentors and supervisors from whom I have been able to ask for help and support. I want to do the same for others in my current job as a foreman.

During my career, my challenge is the repair debt of Finnish buildings, which is currently nearly the same amount as war reparation. All my actions lead to safe and healthy environments where people live and work. It is a mission that undoubtedly will continue throughout my entire career.

As a child, I dreamt of a traditional career as a Lego engineer, as was then seen in an advertisement. Construction and enhancement have always been my most important goals. Ever since I was a kid. As a young engineer, of course, I mistakenly 'knew' that I was definitely not going to work in the renovation side.

To me, work in the municipal side was inspiring and most impressive. I have drawn the most from it and mirrored my decisions on it, always considering how the client sees each solution. In this country, the clients of construction work and research dictate the quality with which the work is done. The old saying is still true. You get what you pay for.

In working life, I have learned that you should try to do what interests you the most. I have heard comments from people that "it is easy when you have always known what you wanted and have not had any gap years or anything". In my opinion, I have just been curious and always sincerely keen to learn new things.

My free time is spent consulting house owners under a business name. My clients have mainly been first-time builders. The idea of a business name started when my spouse told me that someone might be willing to pay, if I told them about the quality of construction. A great hint from my nearest and dearest that maybe I was excited about the things at home too.

In my free time, I also repair old computers (i.e. WEEE waste) and restore an old Honda Civic car. Shared gaming moments and adventures with the family always cheer me up! In addition, I have a dog, who takes me out on walks even when I do not feel like it. During working hours, as well as in free time, I consume heavy music heavily. The heavier, the better it releases my internal heavy feelings and worries. Metalheads are always the happiest and most relaxed!

Tuomo Kiiski