Construction is widely recognized as a heavily male-dominated industry, yet one female business owner is striving to level the playing field. Michele Krolczyk, the vice president and owner of Mint Roofing in Long Lake, Minnesota, is growing her company while putting women in the driver’s seat.
Seven of Mint’s 17 full-time employees are women, even though most roofing companies have a hard time filling any positions with female workers. In fact, women account for less than 9% of all construction jobs.
When asked how her company attracts and retains both male and female employees, Krolczyk cites the business’s core values: passion, integrity, flexibility, and fun.
“We talk about them, we reward by them. We try to make sure we integrate them through everything and live by example as well,” she told the Star Tribune.
Mint Roofing specializes in commercial roofing installation, repair, and maintenance. They also run their own sheet metal shop equipped with state-of-the-art machinery to ensure that each roofing job goes smoothly.
A metal roof can last a lifetime while asphalt shingles require repair or reinstallation every 10 to 20 years. Metal roofing can also allow a home or business owner to save as much as 25% of their annual energy bill.
When it comes to energy savings, however, no roofing materials beat solar thermal panels. In fact, it is her work in solar energy and roofing that earned one female entrepreneur the Innovate UK’s 2016 Women in Innovation award.
Christine Boyle, the CEO of Senergy Innovations, grew up in the male-dominated construction industry. Her father ran his own roofing company, and within the family business, only men were offered jobs. After graduating from Queens University in Belfast and securing a job in the banking sector, however, Boyle’s father recognized that her skills could be valuable to his company.
Boyle ran the commercial roofing company for 17 years before developing the Solar Thermal Collector System and starting her own business.