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Michael Redmond, Project Manager, Abbvie

What does Abbvie do?

Abbvie is a global bio-pharmaceutical company. We manufacture treatments for a range of diseases around the world.

What does your job involve?

A project manager could be doing a number of different things. You could be in the design phase of your project, and that means you would be liaising with design engineers, contractors and your stakeholders. At the other end of the spectrum is your insulation phase, which is one of the last. You would be onsite working directly with contractors and other project managers, checking up on their work and schedules. It varies greatly.

What are the most important skills?

Interpersonal and communication skills. You have to develop good working relationships with anyone you come across because you’ll be working with them for months on end. You also need to be able to communicate to anyone, whether it’s good news or bad, and whether you’re communicating with 150 people onsite or your vice-president.

What’s the best thing about your job?

Working with people from so many backgrounds and people who are so much smarter than me.

Do you have any advice for students?

The most important skill would be dealing with people. No matter if they’re a vice-president or someone from an outside contracting company, you need to know how to be friendly and build working relationships.