Women in Construction Week: Melody Padgett


Name and Company: Melody Padgett, Harkins Builders, Inc.

Title: Project Manager

Years in the industry: 20 years

What made you want to join the construction industry? Construction is tangible. I enable an architectural design on paper to become something built, with color, texture and light that will be used for years.  

What does being a woman in construction mean to you? As a woman in construction, I bring another perspective to a project team. In some instances, I provide a greater level of detail. I communicate differently. I lead differently. Diverse perspectives and opinions on a project team provides greater options when planning for new construction or overcoming unforeseen challenges.

How can you help educate young women that may be considering entering the industry or that don’t know about opportunities in the industry? In addition to visibly seeing women in this role, I would propose we use metaphors when introducing women to this industry. Build on something already familiar. For example, construction is like a science fair project. Both have a clearly defined purpose, a design to meet the requirements, materials budgeted and purchased, division of duties, and a way to measure against the goals to ensure they were met.

Many women who plan a large party or raise children are using the same skills required to plan, schedule, lead, and control a project. If women saw that they are already running projects in their day-to-day lives and that these skills are transferrable to the construction industry, we could encourage more women to join in our ranks.