The National Association of Women in Construction has designated the first full week in March each year as Women in Construction Week. The purpose of this week is to celebrate, educate, and promote what women do in the industry and to raise awareness about the wide range of roles that women hold in the world of construction.
While women are joining the construction industry more than ever before, the truth is that they currently make up less than 11% of the industry and they make only $0.96 cent for every $1 that men in construction make.
While there’s still a lot of work to be done, we want to celebrate the women behind our success here at Rufty Homes. We sat down with Mary Beth Buie, Sydney Jamison, and Nicole Pounders to get insight into their experience of what it’s like working in this field.
How long have you all been working in this industry and with Rufty Homes specifically?
Mary Beth, Client Coordinator: 24 years. I earned my Bachelor of Science degree in Interior Design from Meredith College and immediately began work in commercial design, serving corporate accounts. I’ve been with Rufty for 7.5 years.
Sydney Jamison, Business Development: 12 years collectively. I worked in it from 2004 to 2008, then got back in it in 2016. I’ve been working with Rufty Homes for almost 10 years.
Nicole Pounders, Client Coordinator: “Officially” for 19 years, but I grew up in a construction-loving family so I’ve been around it my whole life. I would spend summers with my aunt and grandpa at their job sites, looking at plans, running blueprints on the old ammonia-based copiers (I can still smell that process!), and doing job site clean-up. I loved seeing the drawings come to life and how happy the clients were with the end result. I’ve been here at Rufty Homes for almost a year and I’m loving it! Jon and Kelly have assembled an amazing team here.
What does your role at Rufty Homes encompass?
Mary Beth: As a Client Coordinator, I collaborate directly with our clients, the Project Managers, Interior Designers, and product vendors. I am introduced to the project at the beginning of the construction phase and prior to selections being made. Quarterbacking the selections schedule by guiding the clients and designers through each phase is essential for not slowing down the Project Manager’s construction schedule. Providing accounting summaries to the clients for each selection as they are made is a large part of my role in protecting their budget.
Sydney: I work on the front-end with all of our clients and prospective clients (new builds and remodeling) from introduction to contract. I help keep the process moving through designs, estimating, creating specs, contracts, etc. I work with our local Realtors and on-site agent and developers in our new communities as well.
Nicole: I am a Client Coordinator for both remodel and new construction projects. I assist the Project Manager, Designer, Architect, and client in organizing and tracking all of the selections that go into building or renovating a home - and there are a lot of them!
What do you enjoy most about working in this industry and at Rufty Homes?
Mary Beth: I love coming to work every day knowing that I have a supportive team that shares the same vision: to help our clients’ dreams become a reality. We work with the finest vendors and trade partners that also model our values, which is very fulfilling.
Sydney: I enjoy that every day is different and no two houses or clients are the same. I love meeting our clients and new people, the environment, and the incredibly brilliant and talented people on our team that help us deliver beautiful homes, exceptional customer services, and the experience of building or remodeling a luxury custom home.
Nicole: I enjoy my position at Rufty Homes because I get to see so many facets of the project, from the planning stages, to the excitement of making selections, to watching the raw goods transform into someone’s home. The role is not without hiccups (this is construction after all!) but having an awesome team at Rufty Homes and wonderful trade partners allows us to troubleshoot any issues and resolve them quickly.
If a woman was on the fence about working in this industry, what would you say to convince her that working in construction is the way to go?
Mary Beth: To be successful in this industry, you must be very organized and, simply put, just enjoy working with people. Having patience and the ability to pivot and work through alternative solutions is a daily expectation and part of the magic for providing a truly custom home experience.
Sydney: This industry is incredible and there are so many different avenues within it: sales, building, design, marketing, etc. It is forever changing and it is exciting to help people turn their dream home into a reality.
Nicole: I would encourage someone considering a career in construction to definitely give it a try. There are so many options from engineering or architecture roles, to designing, to tradespeople, which we desperately need more of right now. The construction industry is booming and there are so many opportunities available to learn a new skill, start a career, and get involved in an industry that is so rewarding.
Want to continue reading about women in construction? We encourage you to read this profile on Kelly Nicolson, from our Accounting team.
Experience a thoughtfully refined approach to custom home building with a friendly team devoted to achieving your dreams. With Rufty Homes, you’re assured of a gracious, tailored home building experience defined by distinctive beauty, timeless value and pure joy.
“It truly is the home of our dreams. It’s where we spend time together, make memories with our kids and grandchildren, and fulfill our life’s passions. I can’t recommend the Rufty Homes team enough if you’re looking for your own forever home.”
- Frank & Barbara
“Of course we’ll be working with Rufty again on all of our future projects, including a fourth home on the property for our youngest daughter, when she’s ready.”
- Danny & Renate
“There was never a question that they were putting our needs first and they were always honest with us. At one point in the building process, we talked in-depth about reconfiguring the layout of the home to change the orientation of the garage. Jon was upfront with us and told us they’d absolutely do it if we wanted, but he warned us that lumber prices were starting to go up, which could impact the project.”
- Chad & Caroline
“We put a lot of time and thought into designing our home, and it was important to us that we could find a builder that would support our vision, while also helping us make smart design decisions. After our first meeting with Rufty Homes, it was clear that they understood our goals and were on board some of the more unique aspects that were important to us.”
- Bill & Donna