Employee Spotlight Akanskha Varma

AKANKSHA VARMA · Project Manager

What does “Beyond What’s Expected” mean to you?

Beyond what’s expected means that you put your best foot forward every day. For me in my role in marketing, I try to put the client at the center of every decision. I want to learn what is important to them and try to find synergies to provide the best possible service to elevate their experience. Small things make the biggest difference!

Give us a brief summary of what your career has been like at Buch.

My career has evolved in the past few years at Buch. Being a smaller team in NY, I have had the opportunity to wear many hats. While I started as a Project Manager, my role soon evolved into Business Development & Marketing which was needed to grow our presence in the Northeast. It has been an exciting shift and my prior experience in the field and with clients helps me bring a unique perspective to business development.

Tell us how your educational background/experience helps you in your role.

My background in architecture and graphic design helps me understand the design intent for the spaces we build. It enables me to execute paying close attention to the details without compromising the integrity of the design. My experience in planning retail environments has given me an owner’s perspective of the business and that each project is driven by cross functional teams, each with their unique agenda but all working towards a common goal. My approach with these projects is to facilitate timely, clear and targeted communication with all key stakeholders to ensure that we are able to pivot swiftly when necessary.

What is the most exciting project you have worked on in the Northeast region?

The Industrious office in SoHo was exciting because it was a new customer and a new business sector for our team. It was interesting to learn about the product and their business and cater our workflow to meet their needs. This is a relationship we continue to foster and we were recently nominated to be their preferred GC in the Northeast region.

What is the motivation behind what you do? 

I am motivated to make an impact within our industry. I would like to grow our presence in the Northeast and beyond. I am energized by the support of our team and strive to embody our values and to deliver valuable solutions to our clients.

What’s the most valuable lesson you’ve learned in your career? 

The most valuable lesson I learned is to build and nurture relationships as they serve you well through the ups and downs of your career. The key to relationships is being a good listener, building trust and as a result securing advocacy and sponsorship of mentors. Relationships are two way, and you have to do your part and lean in to make your partners successful, going above and beyond what’s expected. Trusted advisors provide strong support, help you navigate through tricky situations, and remove obstacles that impede work and enable your success.

How did you get introduced to the construction industry?

In my role at Macy’s Store Design & Planning and after years of working with general contractors in building Macy’s store environments, I developed an interest in understanding the construction process. When I was approached to work in construction, it provided an exciting opportunity to learn the other half of the business and to be more hands on.

Do you have any artistic talents that no one knows about? 

I don’t know if I have artistic talents, but I think I am creative. I am inspired by creativity and enjoy the visual and spatial arts. This brought me to pursuing a career in architectural design. I am trained in graphic design, and I especially love printmaking.

If you could be a celebrity for one day, what would you do? 

I would use my celebrity to raise awareness about the Autism Spectrum Disorder and supporting people with disabilities and their families. And space travel. 😊

Can you share a funny personal or work-related anecdote?

I am embarrassed to admit that I once forgot to attend our office holiday party that I helped plan. Needless to say, that I’ll never live this down!