May 03, 2022
Alten Construction, a local, family-owned company, started 27 years ago with humble beginnings and big challenges for Bob and Shannon Alten. Over the years, the duo has attributed much of their success directly to their employees. While every employee has had different reasons for joining Alten Construction initially; their decision to remain with the company long term can be linked back to the couple’s ability to take a genuine interest in the well-being of their workers and the culture they’ve cultivated throughout the years.
Beyond caring deeply for their team, the emphasis on family values at play in the office is another aspect that sets the construction firm apart from the rest.
This year, father-and-son team Joe and Jason Salow are celebrating their 10-year anniversary with Alten Construction. In celebration of the shared milestone, the two offered some insight on what it’s like working together, what they’ve learned from each other and more.
Q: Congratulations on your anniversaries! Who technically discovered Alten Construction first and did you ever imagine celebrating a milestone like this together?
Joe: I initially worked for a different construction firm in the area, but they decided to close their doors. I already knew Bob, and he gave me a call in 2012 to come check out a few of their jobs. I knew right away it was the right fit based on the comradery, the excitement on their jobs and the team. I technically started first, and then I brought Jason on about three to four months later.
Jason: This is our 10-year anniversary with Alten, but it’s actually our 22nd year working together!
Q: Have you always worked in construction and do you think this influenced Jason to follow your career path?
Joe: Yes, I’ve been in construction since 1980. Jason and I are so much alike. We were constantly working on things together, and I could tell early on he was good with his hands. After he graduated high school, I had him come out on a job for the summer and Jason just got right in the middle of it all. The plan was he was supposed to go to college right after the summer, but he had a true passion. That summer pretty much did him in and solidified his career path.
Jason: I graduated high school on a Saturday and the following Monday, I started working with a general contractor as a laborer. Like my dad said, I was looking at going to a community college, but never gave it much more thought after that. My dad’s role in the industry definitely influenced me, and he actually got me that first job as a laborer.
Q: What is your current job title?
Joe: I am general superintendent. Back when I started with Bob in 2012, he didn’t have a general superintendent. At my previous job, I knew there was a good value in having one because there is a huge load on the superintendents, so when Bob asked me if I thought we needed one at Alten, I didn’t hesitate. Unbeknownst to me, he offered me the role two days later.
Jason: Previously, I was a superintendent, but I was recently promoted to foundation and framing superintendent for our self-perform work.
Q: What do you think is the most important lesson you have learned in your career so far?
Joe: Don’t judge and give the benefit of the doubt. You also have to always do what’s best for the company and the people. A lot of times, people want to take a personal approach and do what’s easiest for them, but you have to always think about the company.
Jason: There’s a lot, especially over the past year. Everybody is different and everybody is dealing with different things outside of work. This has been a slow process, but realizing everyone works differently and has to be dealt with differently.