An assistant project manager at The Missner Group, Andrew Maul has had worked his way up through several firms.
Tell us about your background. Where did you grow up, where did you go to school?
I grew up in Lake in the Hills, Illinois, which is a small town just west of Crystal Lake and south of McHenry. I lived there for 18 years, including a few years after college, before moving out on my own to Mount Prospect. I graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville with a degree in industrial technology management with an emphasis in building construction management (a mouthful I know).
When you were young, what did you aspire to be?
I actually I did not really have anything specific that I aspired to or an industry to go into until I was in 7th grade when I went with my grandfather to work for the day during spring break. My grandfather was a transportation engineer and designed concrete and asphalt pavements for the state of Illinois and then worked as a consultant for HLR after he retired from the state. I went with him to a repaving asphalt project in Algonquin and I loved it. I loved that his car was his office and that he wasn’t stuck at a desk all day.
How did you get your start in the industry?
I was hired right out of college by a small roofing consulting firm known as RRK Associates, Ltd. I was hired as a technical field inspector and I was responsible for field inspections and project oversight of commercial and industrial roofs for our clients. They are a good company and it is a great job but I did not feel like I was using my degree that I had worked hard to earn. From there I was hired as a project engineer at Broadway Electric, Inc. I learned a lot from the project I was on being at the airport every day. I wanted something in a different part of the vast world that is the construction industry. Finally, I was hired here at The Missner Group as an assistant project manager and I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here thus far and I am ecstatic about my future here.
Did you have a mentor who helped you get on your feet, or is there someone you turn to now for support?
I have taken something away from every company I have worked for since I worked for Walmart in college. I have never really had a specific person throughout my career that has helped me get on my feet. I have always turned to the more seasoned members of the companies I have worked for to gain wisdom in all situations and advice when I am stuck on something.
What does a day in the life of Andrew Maul look like?
A typical day for me depends on the day of the week. Some days I am in the office, while others I am on site most of the day for meetings with the owner and subcontractors. If I am working from my desk in the office I am typically there most of the day while, if I start at the site I am typically there most of the mornings talking to the other members of my team preparing, and conducting, our meetings and going over the issues of the day before heading back to spend the rest of my day in the office.
What do you like most about your job?
I love how much I am learning at my job. My professors always told us that we’ll learn more in two weeks on site than we will in an entire semester in class. I really enjoy how different things can be from day to day with my job and this industry as a whole. I also really enjoy that you have to function both individually and as a team in order to finish a project.
Looking to the future, what do you hope to achieve/work on that you haven’t already?
Being as young as I am in this industry there is a lot that I want to accomplish. I want to be able to get to a point where I am building multi-story buildings and warehouses. I want to be running these bigger projects and be able to look back and say “I ran that project”. Although, I understand that in order to get to that point I have to work hard at the smaller project and build experience.
How do you spend your time away from the office?
Away from the office I usually am playing video games in the winter to avoid the cold. When it is decently warm out I love going to forest preserves to go for walks and just enjoy the outdoors. I love to hike and go to state parks and see nature. My favorite place to go was Devil’s Lake in Baraboo, Wisconsin. I love watching football and hockey during the fall and winter. When I am not spending time doing that I am with my girlfriend and family helping them.
What is your favorite place that you have traveled to? Where do you hope to go next?
I have not really travelled a lot for vacation, but I have to say my favorite place was the Black Hills in South Dakota. The hiking and scenery out there were some of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. I would love to go out to Arizona and see the Grand Canyon and hike that area.