Meet the Leadership: Chris Gleich, Principal

1. How did you become interested in engineering?

Headshot of HAWA engineer Chris Gleich
Chris Gleich, Principal

I was always interested in learning how things work from a young age. That progressed over time to me looking at the Architecture of buildings and what went into them. When it came time for college I narrowed it down between Architecture and Engineering. I chose Engineering.

2. What has been the most interesting or significant change to the industry you’ve witnessed in your time with HAWA?

The amount of information that gets passed between the design team and owner on projects with e-mails. It used to be just phone calls, faxes and meetings. Now everyone gets copied on the e-mail, and multiple people responds to different things within it at different times. You then have to wade through multiple threads of the same e-mail to find everything that affects your work. That forces follow up e-mails to make sure everything was answered and nothing was missed. It is a never ending cycle.

3. What do you most look forward to when you walk into work?

Learning something new. I have worked on everything from schools to Labs, a single private office to a complete 320,000 square foot Corporate Center, NICU floors to an Interoperative OR MRI Suite. The diverse nature of the work has allowed me to continue to grow.

4. What is one thing about your job that might surprise people?

The amount of flexibility needed to negotiate a typical day. Rarely do I have a day that goes exactly as planned. Between phone calls, e-mails, texts and meetings, there are a lot of interruptions that occur during the work day. The key is to try and take things in stride. If you are too rigid it can take a toll on you over time and create a lot of frustration and anxiety.

5. What do you hope to bring to your role?

Continue having good working relationships with others. I have a pretty even personality. That has allowed me to negotiate the highs and lows of work and the unique personalities that I interact with daily. Whether that is with the “A” type individual who needs a listener, or the quiet one you have to ask the right question to. Recognizing those different traits in people allows communicating in a way they are comfortable with. That can lead to long term mutually beneficial relationships.  

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