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Sitting down with… MF Project Management’s Michele Fleming

Sitting down with… MF Project Management’s Michele Fleming

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The Senior Project Manager of MF Project Management on her favorite time of the day to get things done, the craziest thing that ever happened on a job, and how her mother’s childhood advice to her still rings true today.

What’s the most cherished item in your office?

I have a small chalkboard that belonged to my mother who passed away when I was young. In her handwriting, it says, “Thought for the day,” “To love someone is to allow them to grow.” I have four adult children in their 20s. Her statement probably meant for me and my teenage years turned into advice for me during my children’s teenage and young adult growing years.

What’s your favorite time to get things done?

I prefer later in the day when things quiet down.

What’s the soundtrack that plays in the background of your office?

I have a home office so silence or spa music. My guilty pleasure is listening to “Judge Judy” in the background, as it’s not a show you have to watch.

Name the band you cannot take off your playlist.

Boston, Styx, Queen. I love old-school rock.

What does a typical workday look like?

In the morning I problem-solve. The afternoons are touching base and connecting. Late afternoon is for relaxing and focusing on paperwork when the phone calls have died down.

What’s the craziest thing that has ever happened to you on a job site?

I came to do a punch walk in a store in Florida that was complete and filled with fixtures. We were getting our final sign-off from the building inspector that day. I had scheduled for clothes to come in the next day.

I had already gone through three different superintendents and the 3,000 square foot space barely made it to this point of completion. The building inspector walked in, looked up and said, “I’m not signing you off because you never had the ceiling coated with a mono-coat.” Then he then turned and walked out.

What are you binge-watching right now?

The final season of “Yellowstone.” I also love K-Dramas.

What’s the coolest thing you have done since the pandemic hit?

My husband and I went to Napa California with some friends and went on the Napa Valley wine train. We toured the vineyards and wined and dined.

What has this experience taught you?

Laughter with friends and family is worth more than gold.

If you knew what was going to happen, what would you have done differently?

Remodeled my house.
Favorite comfort food?

Cold pizza with pepperoni, mushroom and onion.

Best advice you ever received?

I was working at Disneyland and had just got promoted into management, I had spent years wearing blue in the maintenance division. An electrician I knew came up to me and said, “I have worked here many years and have seen many people get promoted, it changes people, don’t ever forget where you came from.” I never look down on anyone; everyone is important, no matter what role they hold.

Biggest influence in your life?

My husband. He always supports me, he took on my role of taking care of my children and his child while I traveled to all my stores across the country for years. He is strong, funny, and chill. When my anxiety rises, he is the first to tell me to focus on the big picture which helps me refocus. He is my rock.

What trait do you most admire?

Honesty. If there are issues on the job site I don’t expect the GC to try to solve everything I have enough experience to help by approving more money or adding time, but if they tell me everything is fine when it’s not, it does not go over well with me.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Never jump to conclusions. Always hear both sides of the story. I have always been very perceptive and can tell when contractors or subcontractors are not telling the truth but it’s important to know both sides before jumping to conclusions.

What’s the first thing you are going to do when you are able to get back to some sense of normalcy?

At this point, I feel things are back to normal. I spend every weekend riding my bike to the beach with my husband and my two dogs, Kira and Murphy.


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