Chad Short, Senior Project Manager at Mace
Mace People

Chad Short

Associate Director of Operations

Consultancy, Sub-Saharan Africa

Chad joined Mace’s Johannesburg office in 2012 and quickly rose through the ranks from senior quantity surveyor to associate director. With outstanding attention to detail and steely client focus, he draws on his construction background and consultancy skills to provide commercial fit outs for multinational blue chip and life sciences clients as they expand across Sub-Saharan Africa.

How did you get into what you do?
I’ve always had a passion for the built environment and after I left school I went on to study BSc (Hons) Construction Management. On completion of my degree I moved to the UK where I gained a lot of experience within the construction industry. I returned to South Africa in 2012 and joined the Mace Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) team in Johannesburg. I’m a detailed-oriented person, so the move from construction to consultancy means that I still get to apply that part of my expertise on every project.
How do you find the difference between working in SSA and the UK?
The construction industry in SSA is still developing, particularly in terms of health and safety and quality. It's allowed Mace to raise the bar and use our international processes and procedures to provide speed, higher quality and more certainty to project delivery. During my time in South Africa it’s been great to see how we can implement global best practice to build lasting relationships in this part of the world. We always put our clients first.
What do you enjoy most about your role at Mace?
I enjoy being part of growing the Mace business and helping our clients on their own journeys of expansion. I also feel lucky to be part of a fantastic team that is constantly exploring bigger and better ways to do things. The way we managed to keep projects on track during the Covid-19 lockdown was undoubtedly down to the strength of our team dynamics and internal processes. We’re delivery focused, but it’s a caring environment.
What do you see as the big trend for your work in South Africa right now?
There is a strong focus on social infrastructure and life sciences. As a nation, we must make sure that the right healthcare facilities and labs for carrying out research are delivered in the next 3-5 years. For us, as a company, this trend means that we will continue to explore new ways of working in an integrated project delivery model that provides certainty, transparency and speed to market while meeting regulatory requirements.
What do you find most exciting about the life sciences sector?
When you work with life sciences companies, you are part of a cog in a wheel that will help produce life-saving drugs and treatments both for people in your own community and on a global scale. It’s motivating to know that our approach to project delivery can help our clients in this sector achieve speed to market. When a life science project is delivered on-time or ahead of schedule, consumers will gain timely access to the drugs they need. It’s great to feel part of that process. I also enjoy drawing on my construction background to spot the mechanical details that make a difference to the success of these projects.
What are you passionate about outside of work?
The outdoors is a big part of the way of life in South Africa - from having a BBQ on a Saturday to participating in outdoor events. I'm also a keen wildlife photographer and I look forward to going on safari again.
Chad Short, Senior Project Manager at Mace

“During my time in South Africa, it’s been great to see how we can implement global best practice to build lasting relationships with clients in this part of the world.”