Kristen Naber has been with Todd & Sargent since December 2020. She began as a Project Management Intern while attending Iowa State University, and she now works as an Assistant Project Manager for projects in the US and Canada. Read on to learn about her path to construction:
How and when did you decide to go into construction?
My degree is in industrial engineering, and I initially had no intent to go into construction as it wasn’t really portrayed as an option. That being said, I wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to do. I wanted to do what my degree was teaching me - to make processes more efficient and to continuously improve. I had a few internships more focused in manufacturing and the standard side of industrial engineering. One of my best friends in my major had her internships in construction and thought it would be a great path for me as well, so when looking for full time roles, that was a direction I favored. I ultimately ended up in construction knowing it would be exciting to learn so many things since I didn’t have a construction background and to apply my knowledge in a less standard place for my degree.
What do you enjoy most about your job/working in construction?
I think what I enjoy most is the challenge. I tend to get bored when things get easy, and in construction, especially at T&S, I feel like I am constantly learning and being challenged, which I genuinely enjoy. This means I am continuously getting better and growing as a working professional. In construction, things are constantly changing and there are many moving parts. This allows me constantly practice being adaptable, proactive, and motivated to reach my goals not only for the job itself, but for me as well.
What advice do you have for young women who are considering pursuing a career in construction?
Coming from someone who had zero experience with construction, if you like to learn, adapt, and challenge yourself, go for it! Step into that confidence, learn, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Close to when I started at T&S, I was told I am persistent. Some may take that as annoying, but I think that has been key to my success in construction so far. Be persistent to get your questions answered and to learn what you need to in order to be successful.