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Leading Future Leaders: Q&A with Project Manager Connor Hawkins

The sign of true health and growth inside a business is often found not in the current generation of leaders, but in the next generation. At Gray, our family is proud to be one that is constantly looking to grow and develop the next generation of leaders. We spoke with Connor Hawkins, project manager at Gray’s South Atlantic Office, about leading future leaders and what he enjoys most about being in the Gray family.


Can you tell us what your normal workday or “day in the life” is like?


One of the exciting aspects of working in this industry is that every day is truly different. I may find myself on a jobsite, in the office, or meeting with customers and subcontractors anywhere in the country depending on the current phase of a project. Throughout your career at Gray, you find yourself spending less time on the actual process and more time mentoring and leading Gray’s future leaders.


Since you started with the company, how has it changed in your opinion?


The biggest change has been the general growth of the company with the addition of team members, substantial increase in project size, project complexity, and type of markets we service. However, I think it’s more important to note what hasn’t changed–the Gray way. The culture and people are what makes this place so special; that’s consistent whether you’re here in the Charlotte Office, another regional office or an endorsed brand office, or on a jobsite.


What do you enjoy most about your work?


The people, process, and projects. It’s fulfilling to turn an idea or set of plans into a fully functioning facility that exceeds customer expectations and provides substantial positive impacts to local communities. Specifically, for Gray, I appreciate the openness and collaborative environment we have. Whether it be on a jobsite where everyone has the power to shut down any activity for safety, or the direction of the company, everyone has a voice and is encouraged to express their opinion or concerns.


What has been the most memorable experience with Gray since you started?


One of our project’s jobsites held an event to support local families in need the first comes to mind. We often select local communities or charities to support on each project. On that project, we selected a cause and were able to support several local families. Meeting with the selected families and seeing the impact first-hand was certainly fulfilling and memorable.


What does being a part of the Gray family mean to you?


Well, it’s hard to explain to someone outside Gray. It’s great to be surrounded by friends, mentors, and likeminded people who are always willing to chip in and do whatever it takes to get the job done.


In one word or phrase, how would you describe Gray?


A company that feels more like family with a common, unrelenting focus on safety, quality, and relationships.


If you would like to learn more about joining the Gray family, please visit

    Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a contributing author and not necessarily Gray.

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