Grunley Employees Inspire Phelps High School for Career Day
Luca Covi, Business Development Manager, and Petar Radakovic, Assistant Project Manager, gave several presentations to different groups of students in grades 9-11. Luca and Petar shared with students their academic and professional paths to pursue their careers. They also told students about their favorite Grunley projects, highlights of working on a job site and the roles of different employees within the company.
“In our industry, every day we see the physical work we are doing. All the buildings I worked on will live on even after I’m gone, and that gives me such a sense of pride,” shared Luca Covi.
Luca and Petar agreed that the three best skills to have starting out in the construction industry include good communication, loyalty and an education. Luca emphasized, “Communication skills are number one. You’re going to be communicating with other people both inside and outside the company. Start learning how to talk to people. Find common ground with people who have different views and opinions to get things done."
After the presentation, students asked Luca and Petar questions about the positives and negatives of their jobs, what a typical work day looks like, how to deal with difficult people and insights into conflict resolution. When asked about his favorite part of his job, Petar shared, “My favorite part of the job is working with different people on different projects. Each project is unique with its own distinct challenges, which keeps things exciting…I like that I am constantly walking the site, not sitting behind a desk. My first project manager told me that ‘we are excuse eliminators.’ Get rid of excuses for things to go wrong or schedules to get behind… time is money.”
Luca agreed with this sentiment, “A large part of what we do is problem solving. We ask, ‘Why not? Why can't we?’ and challenge the norm to make things happen.”
Another key takeaway shared by Luca was how to deal with conflict, “When you do have conflict, try to understand where the other person is coming from and that makes it a lot easier to resolve.” The students walked away with unique insight into the construction industry thanks to two model Grunley employees who volunteered their morning to visit the school.