Paul Dixon in front of North Shore Hospital

When Paul Dixon had a heart attack 12 years ago, he was determined once he recovered, he would live life to the full and travel the world, but retirement was not part of that plan.

"I had never travelled overseas until April 2010," Paul said. "Then in July 2010 I suffered a heart attack and had a triple bypass. "That's when I decided to travel to see a lot more of the world."  

The 74-year-old has worked at Sydney's Royal North Shore Hospital for 13 years and is one of the contract facilities managers.

Paul's valuable contribution to Ventia and to the community is being celebrated as part of NSW Seniors Festival, which runs from Friday, 25 March to Sunday, 3 April.

Paul began his journey with the business in November 2004, when he started working for Thiess Services at North Head Sewage Treatment Plant, where Sydney Harbour meets the ocean, as a Maintenance Supervisor, then Operations Manager.

He continued working on large pieces of infrastructure, including filling in for the Site Manager at Wallerawang Power Station, near Lithgow in NSW, and on the $2.5 billion wastewater recycling plant in Brisbane for four months.

He returned to Sydney in November 2008 to start work at Royal North Shore Hospital.

Paul enjoys fixing things and mentoring others, which keeps him in the workforce.

Working keeps one's body and mind active.I also like to help others achieve, teach them some of the old tricks of the trade, and how to achieve a result. Paul said.

"There is nothing better than to solve a problem with equipment, so it won't fail again."

He also likes to contribute in other areas, now he works at a hospital. 

"While working at Royal North Shore I have met several doctors who have asked me to talk to students and explain how my medical conditions affect me," Paul said. 

"I feel that if the students can pick up anything from my life experiences, it may assist with saving another life."

However, he does get frustrated when young people aren't so keen to benefit from his wisdom.

"The younger generation don't want to listen to what must be done to repair something," Paul said. "They mustn't understand you have been there before and made a mistake that you don't want them to repeat."

Paul doesn't give much thought to retirement, and his doctor won't let him anyway.
"I have a Cardiologist and every time I have a check-up, he will ask: 'You're not thinking of retiring?' He said that he has seen too many people retire, then sit down and die."

Paul said he didn't think there was a secret to staying in the workforce. 

"I don't really feel that I must cope with any work challenges while I still have my health," Paul said.  "If you turn up to work, do what is expected of you."

Make a contribution to the team effort to achieve results with the best possible outcome.