Sam Walden: My Career in Science and Tech Project Management
Sam is a Partner in the Project Management team at Bidwells. Day to day, he aligns teams to seamlessly deliver innovative projects on time and on budget. Read how Sam enables scientific advancements through his work in the answers below.
Sam Walden, Partner, Project Management
Could you describe what your job is?
I often liken project management to being the conductor of an orchestra, I coordinate everyone involved in a project - the client, consultants, contractors - to work cohesively. My role is guiding the team to fulfil the project brief, meeting key metrics like quality, timelines and budget. I ensure all the pieces come together in harmony.
What do you love about your job? Why do you enjoy working in this industry?
Every day is different with diverse projects and clients. I love interacting with people to rally teams so that we can effectively work together. While some days are challenging, solving problems and facilitating progress is extremely rewarding. Seeing gleaming new facilities come to life is a real highlight for me.
Why did you pursue/fall into a ‘Science Aligned’ Career?
With a science background, including chemistry, physics and computing, I have a genuine interest in what our clients do. I like to think I blend scientific knowledge with my experience in coordinating multifaceted projects. The technical complexity of science facilities also appeals to me - balancing human needs with specialised environments. Fast-paced innovation keeps things exciting.
Could you tell us about what an exciting day in your role would look like?
Hitting milestones like practical completion is very rewarding. However, problem-solving challenges can be just as exciting - whether strategic, technical or contractual. When everything's high pace and tricky, creating order from chaos provides great satisfaction. I thrive on navigating obstacles.
What three words would you use to describe what you do?
Problem-solving, facilitator, innovation.
What are the most interesting projects you've been involved in?
From revamping ancient monuments to highly secure data centres, variety is the spice of life! Delivering Airbus Group’s UK design HQ - one massive workspace for thousands of engineers - was memorable. Every complex project has unique twists and makes an impact in its own way.
Project management is an instrumental role in science and technology as companies often need facilities that are purpose built and tailored to their unique set of needs.