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Making a Difference: Hill’s Kholoud Ali Mohamed Elsayyad

With more than three decades of experience in planning and project and construction management, Kholoud Ali Mohamed Elsayyad is Hill’s senior project controls manager for a mixed-use development in Cairo, Egypt.

What is your current project and tell us more about it?

Since 2018, I have been managing the project control activities team for the Taj City project. Taj City consists of 201 residential plots with a gross land area of 356,000 SM served by a 3,000 SM Club house constructed by 20 contractors executing 50 construction packages. The total built up area is more than 279,000 SM. Types of buildings include villas, apartments, twin houses, club house with required infrastructure, and landscape works.

What are the special unique contributions to your work/project?

There are many contributors to the success of any project, but what I would call the key, unique contributors are teamwork, stakeholder management, and communication and information flow.

Share with us your love of the built environment.

My love for my work started with the choice of engineering as my field of study, followed by working in several mega-projects and realizing the impact of these projects on the community, from rehabilitation and expansion of the Alexandria sanitary system to the New National Cancer Institute and others. You become connected and feel proud to be part of this impact.

How did you come to work for the construction industry?

When you plan to be architectural engineer and events lead you to be a civil engineer, then to be recommended to be part of project control team, and you start the journey, I am truly grateful for everyone who taught me or worked with me.

What are the challenges and benefits of working in the construction industry?

Being a woman working in the construction industry and in a leading role comes with some challenges. From the urge to multi-task several roles on and off site to the tough conditions present on site, unplanned changes in timelines, economic impact on market, and an impact on the whole world of investors, suppliers, and contracts.

Yet, with every challenge comes opportunity. Working in such a challenging industry has its share of benefits, starting with personal growth, working in a diverse culture, the joy of seeing the final project come to life, and exposure to obstacles that push us to get out of our comfort zones and innovate.

How do you think other women can be involved?

Women by nature are considered multi-taskers and planners whether they choose to be home-staying or working. I believe involving women more starts with on-the-ground engagement in universities though summits, planned tours/visits to construction sites, and internships that would enable them to build the base they need to start and choose construction careers.