IN THE NEWS

The thing I appreciate most about KBD is our commitment to providing a quality product to our Owners while working ethically and building strong relationships.”

GET TO KNOW OUR TALENTED TEAM MEMBER,
Jessica Freese

She joined Kajima Building & Design Group in 2018 as a Project Manager. In January 2020, she was promoted to Senior Project Manager. We would like to congratulate Jessica on her continued success at KBD Group!

Interview with jessica: Q&A

Question: Why did you choose your profession?
I actually started out of college as an Industrial Engineer working on facility and process design and optimization for eCommerce distribution centers.

During that time, I got more interested and excited in the facility construction aspects of my job and wanted to change my career to get more in-depth on the general construction side instead of the design and Owner side.

Question: What do you like most about working at KBD?

The thing I appreciate most about KBD is our commitment to providing a quality product to our Owners while working ethically and building strong relationships with both the Owners and our Subcontractors.

We always try to do the right thing for everyone and understand the importance of lasting relationships.

Question: What is your proudest moment at KBD?

My proudest moment with KBD was probably how we handled pouring Ductilcrete through the wettest winter in 20 years for a project in Virginia, while minimizing cost and schedule impact to the Owner.

Question: What has been your favorite project and why?

My favorite project was probably the Desoto 55 project we worked on in Mississippi where we actually constructed 3 buildings simultaneously in a logistics park, totaling 1.5M+ SF.

It was an incredibly challenging project from managing bad soil conditions to the complex schedule coordination between the three buildings, but I feel like I learned a lot during that project that will be incredibly valuable going forward in my career.

Question: What do you find the most challenging at KBD?

I think the most challenging task, that I have to work through at KBD, is finding the balance between building a good working relationship with our subcontractors, while also holding them accountable to their contract scopes.

It’s important to write a very thorough subcontract to keep subcontractors accountable to their scopes.

Simultaneously, it’s also important to be able to have difficult conversations onsite with our subs when expectations are not being met, but also continuing to maintain a good working relationship with them.You can’t be afraid of conflict or working through it.

Question: Share a fun fact about yourself.

A fun fact about myself is that, before I let life get in the way, I was working towards getting my single-engine pilot’s license. Before I stopped, I was taking lessons to fly single-engine planes and was about ready to complete my first solo flight. But life happens, I got busy with work, and haven’t picked it back up again. Probably for the best, though, since it’s a pretty risky and expensive hobby!

Question: What advice would you give to new hires or those starting out in the construction industry?

My biggest piece of advice when starting out is to always ask questions when you don’t know something and to never be ashamed of not knowing all the answers.

Especially in construction, most people we work with have extensive knowledge from years of experience which is impossible for someone starting new in the industry to have.

Rather than secretly worrying that other people will find out you don’t know something, latch on to people with experiences you don’t have, and learn everything you can from them.

No one expects you to know the answers, but they do expect you to be open and willing to learn quickly.

 

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