Jordan Gayle is a floorlayer for A G Flooring Ltd, a commercial floor laying contractor based in Manchester. Here he discusses his journey - from a career in taekwondo to construction, why he loves floor laying and where he wants his future to take him.   

What does your role involve?

My role involves a wide range of things, including fitting all variations of flooring/stair work, subfloor preparation, white rock as well as measuring and organising jobs.

Which company do you work for and what do they do?

I work for A G flooring Ltd, a well-established flooring contractor based in the Greater Manchester area. They are vinyl/white rock specialist, but we fit all styles and types of flooring. 

What’s your favourite thing about your job?

I enjoy the fact that most days are different, and I like that the work is physical and rewarding when you complete a job. I enjoy when you are working alone you can plan the day/breaks to a schedule that suits you. If you’re working with people you get along with, work is fun and the day flies by.

What is the highlight of your day?

The best part of my day I probably once we’ve finished the preparation work, because that usually means the hard physical work is done and I can begin installing the floorcoverings.

Where do you want your career to take you? 

Financial freedom is my goal. I would love to have my own business. I also have other jobs, I want to be able to free up some more time so that I could still do both, but also have time for me & family. 

What would you say to someone thinking about a career in floor laying?

It’s not something you can do half-hearted. It will be tough at times, but if it’s something you commit to, it can be a really good job not only financially. But you get to see lots of new places, no two days are the same, you’re very rarely watching the clock and it’s a career that could take you in so many directions. 

Is there anything else you would like to share which would inspire others to follow their chosen career path?           

My chosen career was professional taekwondo, I competed internationally for 10 years, and my goal was to become Olympic champion. But that’s not the way my career went, and I retired at 25 beginning an apprenticeship in floor laying.

I think the fact it’s still an active job and each day you have clear goals to work towards made the switch quite easy. It shows with the right mindset you can make things work that you wouldn’t expect. 

What’s your average working day like?

I arrive on site before 8am sign in and check my job sheet collecting any materials/tools together that I need for the job.

First would be preparation work then I would either carry on with the laying of whatever floorcovering I am fitting. Often, we have more than one job sheet at a time which means I would work on multiple jobs to be more efficient. I would usually stop working and look to pack up/sign out at around 16:15pm.  

What do you like about your role?

Now that I am qualified, I like the freedom. It’s up to me how I set out my day. 

What skills/qualities do you need in your role?

It’s very important that you have good people skills because you are representing your company always.

You need to be able to work with people when you’re planning work and you need to be patient both with yourself and with others. You must have high working standards and an eye for quality when installing floorcoverings.

What was your background before starting this role?

I left school and went straight to the national taekwondo academy for 10 years, so I had no experience of a normal working day. It was a shock at first, but I think the skills I learnt as an athlete transferred and really helped me with flooring. 

What are you most proud of in your career?

In my flooring career up to now, I am most proud of winning the Contract Flooring Association - Flooring Apprentice of the year award in 2018.

I put a lot of effort into the competition, so it meant a lot to noticed, plus the prize was amazing!

Where do you see yourself in 10 years’ time?

I see myself taking a more senior role in A.G flooring, it’s a family business so the goal one day will be running the company with my dad. I also would love to run other companies to help create freedom so that I would be working for pleasure not necessity.

Why did you choose floor laying?

I tried floor laying for my work experience in high school and I remember that it was more of an activity then a job. I think I would struggle doing something that wasn’t hands on. 

What has changed since going into floor laying?

Health and safety requirements are always increasing and especially now since Covid there are a lot of new measures which keep me safe and able to continue to work.

Interested in following in Jordan's footsteps and becoming a floorlayer? Check out the job role here

For more information on a career in flooring and how to get started, check out the Contract Flooring Association's training guide here.