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Mark Scott
Regional Manager
Birmingham

Mark Scott

  • Regional Manager
  • Birmingham

Boy to man – Mark has grown to love the Lanes buzz

Mark Scott knew he was doing a good job when he saw a Lanes Group plc brochure promoting the most recent and most impressive projects.
Three of the projects were featured on the front cover. And Mark realised he had managed all three of them.

The fact that he was only 20 years old at the time is also worthy of note.

“It made me stop and think how far I had come in just a short period of time,” says Mark. “It was really satisfying to see. I’ve still got the brochure, somewhere in the loft.”

Mark is now the Regional Manager of Lanes’ Birmingham depot, one of 20 across the UK. 

He was just 16 when he joined the drainage and wastewater specialists in November 2002. Taken on as a stores assistant at Lanes’ London depot at Rainham, Essex, after completing his GCSEs.

Supported along the way

It’s fair to say, that since his first day at work, his career has grown alongside the business, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2022.

“From the moment I joined Lanes I wanted to learn and prove myself,” says Mark.

“I suppose that’s just how I am. I started at the bottom and wanted to climb the ladder. And I’ve always felt supported by Lanes along the way.”

Aged 17, Mark started to climb.

He became an assistant jet vac operator. A ‘back lad’ as it was known then. The person who stood at the back of the jet vac tanker, controlling water pressure and flow under the instruction of the jet vac tanker driver.

Aged 18, he was promoted again, to become a mainline CCTV drainage survey engineer. With his own CCTV survey van, he began to work across the UK. Sometimes staying out on the road for five days at a time.

Mark explains: “Lanes was growing rapidly at the time. But it didn’t have the large depot network we have today.

“So if there was a large project, we could be sent from London to pretty much anywhere in the country.”

That could take Mark and a team of engineers to East Anglia, the West Country or Wales working on what could be large highway and rail projects.

Meeting the hidden challenges

And Mark was often, from the age of 19, the site person in charge.

But he enjoyed having to learn quickly. “Coming into the industry, I didn’t know what to expect,” he says.

“We were working on MoD sites, in government buildings and giant construction sites.

“The job was exciting then and it still is today. Drainage by definition involves hidden challenges. There’s a lot of problem solving which I really like.”

Aged 20, Mark was running his own large projects, and working hard to win the respect of clients surprises by his youthful looks.

One job stands out in his memory. 

He recalls: “We were working nights on a highway job that lasted several weeks near Swindon with teams from London, Southampton and Bristol.

“The client project manager worked days. But near the end, he came out on a night shift to thank me for our contribution. He’d had so much positive feedback from his own team that he wanted to tell us in person. That meant a lot.”

Building and working in teams

That point about problem solving sparked another story. A client was having downpipes in a tower block lined by another team.

And felt they were being mucked about by delays – a completion date was weeks away – unnecessary complications and expense. 

The client turned to Mark. “We looked at the job and by using a different approach, we got it done safely and to a high standard in 24 hours. It’s about having a flexible but determined mindset.”

Working with colleagues on providing drainage support during construction of the Olympic Park in Stratford for the London 2012 Games has been another career highlight.

By 2013, aged 26, Mark was the operations manager at the London depot. And in March 2018, he was appointed regional manager.

He had spent over half his life at Lanes. Perhaps it’s no surprise he identifies so closely with the business.

“Teams I’ve worked in are like an extended family. When I became a manager I realised I was responsible for building them and looking after them,” he says.

“I’ve always also had a positive feeling about my place here. I’ve always received the training I need, and if I’ve had a good idea it’s listened to.”

That backing included the company paying for Mark to study for a Level 7 Diploma in Strategic Management and Leadership.

Equivalent to a master’s degree, after completing a 26,000 dissertation on business strategy at Lanes, he was awarded his diploma in 2019.

He put the learning to good work, overseeing a significant increase in turnover at the London depot.

Sewer work – it’s exciting 

Then in April 2021, he was appointed as regional manager in Birmingham. A new depot and new opportunities.

“I feel very positive about what we can achieve in Birmingham. There’s great potential to grow and expand the business we do here,” Mark says.

He is already expanding the depot’s service portfolio, adding pipe lining, water supply services and septic tank installation to the mix.

Mark is looking to give his team the same support he has benefited from, with extra training and opportunities for those who want them.

He’s just as excited now about the challenges working at Lanes pitches at the team – and he loves it when colleagues feels the same.

“We had a new HGV driver start this week, straight from a delivery job,” says Mark.

“He was a bit unsure at first, but each day I’ve been seeing him getting more excited about what working in drainage is all about. Getting the buzz.”

We provide all of our valued employees with a range of rewards and benefits, including training opportunities, health schemes, pension options and childcare support.
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At Lanes, we deliver industry-leading training courses and programmes to help our staff do the best job they can, while developing their skills over the span of their careers.
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We offer a diverse range of roles and opportunities in locations across the UK, and applying for them is as easy as filling out our online application form.
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Working at Lanes can be rewarding and fulfilling, but you don’t have to take our word for it - we’ve asked some our staff to share their stories of what it’s really like to work here.
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If you still have questions about our application, induction and onboarding processes, check out our FAQs page for additional information.
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Lanes Group plc,
17 Parkside Lane, Parkside Industrial Estate, Leeds, LS11 5TD

Lanes Group plc
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