Ken Yuille had worked as a concrete finisher for his entire career when he joined Haskell in 2006. He’s now a project superintendent who has overseen construction of some of the company’s most high-profile projects, but he’s still guided by the same philosophy from his days in concrete.
“Most people think concrete is hard work, but if you work the concrete and don’t let it work you, it's not very hard,” Yuille said. “I have the same feeling about overseeing a project.”
Yuille is nearing completion of his most recent assignment as a superintendent at Haskell’s Norwegian Cruise Line Terminal B project at PortMiami. The massive scale, complex design and technologically advanced construction approach required him to manage a broad team of subcontractors on a confined site with a tight deadline.
Working with a large site team of Haskell and joint venture partners from NV2A, his communication and field coordination expertise played a crucial role in keeping workers safe and completing the project on time.
“I think Ken's best strength is that he's a strong communicator,” said Travis Taylor, Director of Construction for Haskell’s Consumer Goods division. “He's not afraid to get into the details of what the subcontractors are doing. Ken will hang around and make sure the subs are doing it the right way.”
While Yuille now oversees all of the trades involved in a project, concrete was his first love. Growing up in Lynchburg, Virginia, he went to work for his father and uncle’s concrete business and heavy machinery business as a teenager.
“I started doing jobs like cleaning tools and carrying everything because I wasn't allowed to actually work with the concrete at that age,” he said before laughing. “I’ve always loved concrete, and I still love it. That's my comfort. You start with raw ingredients that don’t look like much at all on their own. If you do it right, you’re left with a nice, shiny slab.”
Yuille was introduced to Haskell while working as a concrete finisher for a subcontractor that performed jobs for the company across the country. He joined Haskell as a finisher in 2006, but his managers quickly realized they hired someone with leadership potential.
Within a few years, Yuille was promoted to a concrete foreman. His next promotion was to general foreman. Four years ago, he became a project superintendent.
Yuille is one of Haskell’s most highly respected field leaders, and it’s an accolade he’s won simply by following the Golden Rule.
“I’m not a yeller or a screamer,” Yuille said. “I like to give everyone the same respect that I expect to get. I don’t care if you’re a temp working for a subcontractor or the head supervisor. You treat everyone the way you want to be treated.”
Taylor said Yuille demonstrates the value in developing superintendents from within the Haskell ranks. He has fully bought into the company’s integrated project delivery methodology and everything it takes to make it work. He’s loyal to his team, works well with the engineering side of projects and prioritizes clients’ needs above all else, even when that requires looking beyond the day-to-day goals of a project.
“He sees the bigger picture,” Taylor said. “He gets our culture and understands our goals. He communicates really well with the client, and he understands the Haskell vision and the values that we say are important.”
Yuille, who lives in North Carolina with his wife and 5-year-old daughter, said he never expected his career to develop the way it has since he joined Haskell. He said the company not only provided him opportunities, but also the training and mentorship to make the most of them.
“Some of the opportunities I wasn’t even sure I was ready for myself,” Yuille said. “I was put in a few situations where I had to succeed or fail, and I don't like failure. Everything was thrown at me, and fortunately I was able to run with it.”
He added: “Haskell has never told me anything they didn’t come through with. It’s a great company. A lot of people say I bleed blue. If they see it in you, they won’t hold you back.”
Haskell delivers more than $1 billion annually in Architecture, Engineering, Construction (AEC) and Consulting solutions to assure certainty of outcome for complex capital projects worldwide. Haskell is a global, fully integrated, single-source design-build and EPC firm with over 1,800 highly specialized, in-house design, construction and administrative professionals across industrial and commercial markets. With 20+ office locations around the globe, Haskell is a trusted partner for global and emerging clients.
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