Building Futures with Women in Construction

PBK celebrates Women in Construction Week with a goal to emphasize the growing role of women in the industry. PBK is proud of its forward-thinking women in construction. This year, we are highlighting some of the women who play a vital role in creating environments that maximize opportunities to elevate the human experience.   

Hannah Hayes joined PBK in 2014 and is currently Director of Construction Services. In her role, she oversees and manages the firm’s specialized on-site quality control team. Hannah brings more than 13 years of construction experience and holds a state of Florida general contractor license. She is passionate about construction compliance and documentation, and her favorite projects are constructing elementary schools.  

What does a day at work look like for the Director of Construction Services?  

There are two sides to being the Director of Construction Services – one where I check-in with clients and help my teamwork through any issues on their job sites. And the other, where I wake up at 2 a.m. for a concrete pour and my phone rings so many times during the day I can’t remember who I am supposed to call back. It’s a lot of putting out fires and solving problems, which is fun as long as the problems are solvable! 

What makes you excited about going to work?  

Definitely concrete pours. I enjoy the process and all the excitement leading up to the first pour. It’s the first event on-site that will be visible and remain part of the building forever.  

What interested you in construction? Has it always been an interest?  

My dad renovated houses when I was growing up and I often tagged along with him to the work sites offering unsolicited opinions on all the missing potential. I was very opinionated from a young age.  

In high school, I was an accounting intern for a construction company which only furthered my interest in the industry. Even though I’d spend a lot of my time around the industry, I’d never physically built anything with a hammer and nail like the stereotypical construction worker.  

What do you love about working at PBK?  

PBK provides me with a wide variety of opportunities in the field. I work on large-scale projects with varying circumstances and unique finishes that most people in construction do not have the opportunity to work on projects of that size and magnitude.  

What advice do you have for any young women thinking about pursuing a career in construction? What is something you wish you knew right out of college?  

Don’t be afraid of the industry. After I graduated college, I was overwhelmed and wasn’t sure that I knew enough about construction because I didn’t have the experience of physically building something myself. I took a position where I knew my strong organizational skills would be valued. I learned more about the industry and how to handle situations in the field, which is where I ultimately wanted to be, so I worked my way up the ladder. Women shouldn’t be afraid to do the same – getting into a company and working your way up is an excellent way to learn and advance when you’re ready, know your trade and feeling confident.  

While construction is stereotypically a male dominated industry, Hannah is not the only woman on her team. Grecia Jimenez joined PBK Construction Services in 2017 as a Field Team Admin and Project Coordinator. Currently, she serves as a Construction Services Manager where she works on-site full time as a liaison between the client and contractors. Grecia’s favorite projects to work on are also elementary schools, because of the thoughtful learning spaces and the excitement of the young students. 

What does a day at work look like working in construction?  

Every day is full of surprises! I can have a set schedule where I’m visiting different job sites, checking work progress and making sure work is being done, as it should. Other days, I have a plan for the day, which completely changes, and I end up in an entirely different direction than when I started. The construction industry is a different animal.   

What makes you excited about going to work?   

Concrete pours. I dread the early mornings and long days, but at the same time it’s such a rush. There are so many people on- site for concrete pours even though they take place so early in the morning.  

What interested you in construction? Has it always been an interest?  

I was always interested in architecture. I received my degree in architecture from the University of Texas at San Antonio and my first job was as an admin for a general contractor. A superintendent took me under his wing and showed me how much fun working in the field can be, which pushed me towards construction. Most men would probably think “this isn’t for you,” but that superintendent saw my interest in construction and knew I could handle it. Being a woman working in a male dominated industry is empowering. 

What do you love about working at PBK?  

I love seeing my coworkers’ designs come to life. It’s really rewarding to help their designs go from paper to real life. The teamwork at PBK is incredible. We have a great community.  

What advice do you have for any young women thinking about pursuing a career in construction? What is something you wish you knew right out of college?  

There’s so much I wish I knew after college, but I’m happy with the path I chose that landed me where I am today. I started in architecture and ended up in construction. You can really do anything you want, and don’t let anyone tell you differently.   

PBK is proud to celebrate Hayes and Jimenez as women in construction. They represent role models within our firm and strive to share their own experiences with the younger talent. The firm supports our employees as they flourish and encourages each one to take an entrepreneurial attitude when molding their unique talents with their futures.