2019 Women in Construction: Susan Hackett, Subcontractor Relations Manager at Delphi Construction, Inc.

March 29, 2019 - Spotlights

How many years have you been in your current field? 9

Which project, deal or transaction was the “game changer” in the advancement of your career during the last 10 years? I pitched an idea to company leadership suggesting that if we are to grow, we really need focus more attention on our subcontractors – working to improve relationships; act as a liaison between estimating, project teams and the subcontractors; offer trainings, etc. The suggestion was well received and included as part of our operations planning. 

What was your first job and what did you learn from it? My first professional job was as an executive secretary in personnel for an oceanographic research & development firm. During my first review, the personnel manager stated that she didn’t think I was going to cut it. It was the best review I could have had and I was able to quickly turn things around.

What are you doing differently in 2019 that has had a positive impact on your career? Making sure to take vacations and enjoying life – not waiting “until things calm down.”

Who are three women – living or dead – that you would like to have drinks with and why?
1. My dear friend and co-worker Tracy – she passed away very unexpectedly in January at 49 years of age and we all miss her. It’s still so surreal and it’s as if she’s just been busy and out at jobsites – and we’ll run into her in the kitchen or stairway at any moment. I’d love to have drinks with her and tell her how very much she means to me and how much I have always admired her gentle but determined spirit and her relationship with her children – raising children has been my biggest life challenge but Tracy is a true inspiration.
2. My grandmother Gerta – she raised a family in Germany during WWII while my grandfather worked during the week several towns away and rode his bike home on the weekends to help with chores. She grew all her own fruits and vegetables, made all their clothing, and raised three children while having to worry about air raids, rationing, etc. I’d love to have met her at the local gasthaus after a long hard day and share a beer.
3. My Aunt Burnie – she passed several years ago and I miss her terribly. She was a single mother raising a family of four back in the 50s and 60s and never complained about a thing. Always so upbeat.

What were your biggest fears when you started out in your profession? My biggest fear when I started in construction was my lack of construction knowledge. My background was in finance/administration but it turned out to be very useful as an APM, which is where I started out in this industry.



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