Today we are introducing Joel Drew, a fabricator in our new custom cabinet shop, NXT Cabinets.
Meet Joel: NXT Cabinet Shop Fabricator
Q: Tell us about your role with Next Custom Homes? What does your day-to-day look like?
A: Well right now, I’m not doing much on the NEXT side of things, unless it’s trim or cabinet related. I work mainly at the NXT Cabinet shop. At the shop, I make sure everything moves along as needed. If any of our CNC equipment needs work or updating I oversee that process and help with cabinet fabrication and assembly.
Q: How long have you been part of the NEXT team?
A: I started working when I was 13, just helping out here and there. I really started working officially when I was 17, so it’s been a few years since I’m 19 now. In the beginning, I worked with my dad on projects doing trim, landscaping, and basically anything no one else wanted to do. Over time, I developed more people skills and learned how to manage, through other jobs. I’ve been at NXT Cabinets since we opened in 2021.
Q: What do you love about your job?
A: I really like seeing the end result. Once a project is finished and installed. We don’t always get to see the final space, but I like to see what it looks like at the end. Then, I can look at it and say, “I created that!”
Q: What’s it like working alongside your family?
A: (insert laugh here) It’s enjoyable….sometimes! It’s not your typical relationship with a work/life balance. There is a fine line between Dad being “Dad,” and Dad being “Boss.” I’m glad we can relate to each other on a family level, but sometimes we need to put that aside to get a project done. It’s very different from other jobs I’ve had where I wasn’t related to anyone!
Q: Tell about your favorite project
A: My favorite project would have to be Oak Crest. That was when I finally made it out of the “cleanup crew” phase and started really working. That project introduced me to the cabinetry world and I was also able to work on most of the trim in that house. It was a great learning experience and nice to be part of the main team.
Q: What are your future goals?
A: Right now, my goal is to buy a house by 21. I’d also like to explore trade school for welding. I really like working with my hands and doing something different that isn’t repetitive. I know I could have a great skill set if I added something like welding to my current skills.
Q: Favorite movie or book?
A: The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
Q: Favorite place to get food in Austin?
A: Phil’s Ice House
Q: What’s one thing you can’t live without?
A: Hmmm I don’t know…. I’m pretty flexible, so I can’t think of anything I absolutely need to live!