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Richard Maskery: From Zero to Hero

22 Dec 2023

"In just six months I went from having zero ideas about plastering to now being confident that I can complete some small jobs.”

Richard Maskery had previously worked as a taxi driver but was eager for a change. He enrolled on the level 2 Diploma in Plastering at our Greater Manchester SkillCentre and is now building up his experience with plans to start his own business in the future.

Now that he has completed his course, we caught up with him to find out about his experience and what he’s been up to since.

How have you found your experience on the course?

The course was good, I really enjoyed it. The progression from not knowing anything, from getting the plaster on the board and then dropping it on the floor to then just a few months later being able to step back and look at a wall that you’ve done and being able to say I’ve done a good job with that.

I just kept turning up day to day and I thought eventually it would click and it did, I got a lot of enjoyment out of that progression. In just six months I went from having zero ideas about plastering to now being confident that I can complete some small jobs.

As well as plastering, what else did you learn on the course?

We would have a classroom day where our tutor would sit and speak to us about finding a job or if you wanted to start your own business, he’d talk about pricing jobs up and speaking to customers. This was really helpful because it’s not all just about learning the skills, they also go into the real world of finding a job afterwards.

What have you been up to since you finished the course?

When I was coming towards the end of the course a friend of mine was on a job and had come across a wall that needed plastering so he asked if I would be able to help. I received some good feedback on that and now I’m on call for him if he has any other work. I’m hoping to start my own business in the future so I’m focusing on getting my name around a little bit and continuing building my experience.

I’ve also enrolled on the Skills Bootcamp in Construction Multi-trade to gain a few more skills including tiling which is something that I’m keen to grasp. I’m also hoping to enrol on the Advanced Plastering course next year which will help me to increase my speed and give me another certification.

Would you recommend the course to others?

100%! It was a joy to be on the course and the other people that I was on the course with were all great. We were always encouraged to help each other out with things like mixing so we knew how much each other was going to need and we ended up becoming good friends. My tutor was great on a personal and professional level as well which made the course a really great experience.

The skills you learn definitely set you up for going out to the world. There are lots of people who were on the course with me who are also now out taking on jobs and building on their experience, so it definitely works.