May 10, 2022
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: What do you love most about your job?
Joe: The comradery and being around the people. There’s a real sense of accomplishment when you’re getting these projects done. We’ve also really gotten into the training of the younger employees, so it’s great seeing them develop as professionals in their trade.
Jason: I like coming together as a team, building a project and looking at our accomplishments when we’re done. It’s great seeing what our hard efforts have put forth and what we accomplished at the end of a project.
Q: What's it like working with each other?
Joe: Like I said, we’re both so much alike and we’re both strong headed, but we’ve definitely developed a work relationship over the years. For example, Jason calls me Joe at work. We’re able to separate work from personal. Jason moved into a supervisory role early on, so it’s something we just had to do.
Jason: My dad is not my dad on the job site; he’s Joe Salow, my boss. When I became an apprentice carpenter, we actually split ways until I became a journeyman. We still worked for the same company, but I didn’t work underneath him until I became an established carpenter. I believe that helped a lot to create a work relationship.
Q: What is your favorite work-related or construction-related memory together?
Joe: Some of my memories are instances where Jason has made me most proud. When we first started working together, I felt like it was really important that he work with me, but then I wanted to get him out amongst people so he could prove he could hold his own. There’s always that father-son dynamic people think of. Years ago, I remember one of the projects had a couple phases to it and Jason would really be in charge of a lot of different tasks. I remember going out to check on him and thinking, “Oh my gosh, he’s got the same strive to organize and work with people.” I remember being so proud and knew he was going to take it to the next level.
Jason: The fact that we can drive through the San Francisco Bay Area and see the projects we have worked on together and the memories we have had with those projects.
Q: What's something important you've learned from working with each other or what’s the best piece of advice?
Joe: Dealing with the cards you’re dealt. Instead of getting mad or upset, sometimes you just have to change course and do what’s best.
Jason: It’s not so much advice, but his organization, his pre-planning for projects, his ability to run a safe, fun and productive job site and him leading by example. It’s not advice he directly gave me, but something everyone that has worked underneath him has learned and absorbed. There are a few guys that have worked for Alten Construction that have worked alongside me the whole time and my dad has been a mentor for them, too.
Q: Alten Construction has a reputation for a great family culture. Can you tell me a little more about that and why you love working there?
Joe: I don’t feel like I’m just there and just a number, I feel like I’m part of something. They invest in the people and give them the ability to grow. Bob will go out on a limb and give people a chance, and that has rubbed off on me. Even with myself, when Bob asked me to be general superintendent, I wanted to know specifically the duties he expected. Bob gave me some basic duties, but he wanted me to let it evolve. Bob and Shannon are so appreciative and just incredible people.
Jason: Bob and Shannon are very welcoming. Bob spends a lot of time out in the field, and I’m pretty sure he knows every employee’s name. He makes time for everyone, conversates with them and always tries to stay involved. He really keeps it a family atmosphere by knowing all his employees on that level.