A Day in the Life of… Don McColgan

Next up in our 'Meet the Team' feature, we spoke to Group Facilities Maintenance Manager and Operations Manager at RiverRidge's Maydown site, Don McColgan. Check out a typical day for Don below:


I am usually on route to our site at Maydown. Due to the nature of my responsibilities within RiverRidge, two days are seldom the same. I start my day with a visit to the Waste Transfer Station at our Maydown facility, which is my primary place of work. On arrival, I check everything is going as per plan on site and meet with operational staff. At this point, my day can change depending on site requirements, or indeed issues at our other sites that require me to change my plans for the day and head off. We have good teams around our sites within RiverRidge, and are well equipped and experienced to deal with most situations.



Following the physical inspection of the sites, and interactions with the operations team, I go to my office to check my emails and plan the remainder of my day. Sites within the group work 24/7/365 so there will usually be some issues that need actioned ASAP to ensure waste processing can keep up to speed within the group. Depending on how things have gone the night before, I will either be able to stay on plan for the day, or I will have to adapt and go in a different direction. This regularly involves packing up and travelling to one of our other sites within Northern Ireland.



I try to grab a quick cup of coffee and catchup with whoever is around the office before getting back to work again and at this time of day, my aim is to review works that are on-going. This involves speaking with different colleagues on our sites and contractors who are carrying out various tasks that I have assigned them.



Around this time of a normal day, I try to review the status of various tasks that are being completed on sites, against a project management timeline which I work on to manage planned tasks for the days/weeks/months ahead. This involves reviewing jobs with colleagues, liaising with building and maintenance contractors, reviewing quotes/options and making decisions on how/when we are going to progress ahead with the works and sometime around 1.00pm – 1.30pm I usually try to get a quick bite of lunch….



After lunch I attend a daily Online Meeting where the Operations Managers from all the sites have a quick chat to review how operations are going on all the sites and agree on plans for the days ahead, based on the current operations on each of the sites. This meeting gives everyone a good opportunity to keep up to speed with what is taking place on the other sites. It is also a nice opportunity to share experiences with colleagues, as it gives me an insight into other people’s jobs and issues.



If at Maydown, I usually take a quick visit out on site again and once I have that completed, I go back to the office to review what tasks are planned for the following day, check that the sites are ready for the works planned, and ensure the contractor(s) are also ready to go. Ensuring Environmental, Health and Safety Compliance of all activities is taking place on all sites is number one priority, so this is often the time of day to review RAMS etc. for jobs to ensure everything is in order.



Between 5pm-6pm I am usually trying to get finished up for the day to head home.



I have three kids so after dinner is usually their time to decide what the plan is for my evening! I’m not a TV person so I can usually be found doing some DIY outside the house and I do enjoy going for a walk, however, there just never seems to be enough time to allow for this.



Often a time when I take a quick read through the local newspapers and catch up on the local news and if it happened to be a Friday night, I might get time for a quick beer if there isn’t too much planned for Saturday!