Alison Shields

Alison Shields

Job title

Executive Director

Organisation

Paddington Central Management Company

Brief description of the job and key responsibilities

I am responsible for the management of Paddington Central. Currently over 600,000 sq ft of office space in three buildings, 219 residential apartments and 80,000 sq ft of leisure, restaurant and retail space. My job includes all aspects of FM within the landlord area of two of the office buildings and around the estate.

What attracted you to the job?

The challenge of starting from scratch to create a framework to deliver the Paddington Central vision. I started sitting in a portable cabin surrounded by the construction team while the development including my estate office was completed. It isnít often that a job comes up with the opportunity to start with a clean sheet.

Unusual/challenging aspects of the job

The biggest challenge is the diverse range of people and jobs. I deal with everyone from CEOs of multinational companies to construction workers on site. I am involved in negotiations worth millions to an individual complaining about the office temperature.

How did you get into FM and what attracted you to the industry?

By accident really. I am a chartered surveyor whose background is managing large mixed-use schemes and this involves an FM role. I have been involved in the property industry; I have seen a shift away from the traditional landlord/tenant relationship to an acknowledgement of the se4rvice we should provide.

Any interesting tales to tell?

Four years ago the bridge spanning the operational railway and a canal adjacent to our site was demolished. An original iron bridge designed by Brunel was discovered, to the great excitement of historians. You may also recognise Paddington Central on TV ads and programmes as it is often used for filming.