A student athlete with UC Berkley, Jayla Scholis, was surprised to receive a LinkedIn message from a Beacon Building Products recruiter in 2018. Jayla was not looking to join a startup fresh out of college – she was looking for something established. Although she had never considered roofing as a career option, Beacon’s reputation and stability were attractive. She loved the combination of history, benefits, and growth opportunity provided by Beacon so she could pursue a career with upward mobility and continue her personal passion: to serve the community around her.
Jayla is part of Beacon’s Distribution Leadership Program (DLP), a multi-year program that takes employees through training modules ranging from credit, to supply chain, to operations, to sales, and more. “I’m continuously learning – I think that’s what I like about it the most. You don’t get stuck in one role,” Jayla said of the program. Right now, Jayla is working on purchasing with Beacon, learning the ropes of how and when to reorder materials, deal with transfers, and item codes.
Alongside of the opportunities, Jayla emphasized how much she appreciates the safety culture at Beacon, especially with the inherent risks and dangers in roofing. “They put a lot of emphasis on safety and care for us here,” she said, “I feel like my manager cares for us. I didn’t expect that from a job – I thought I would be just a number.”
California’s fires recently presented extremely unhealthy air quality, preventing the branch from opening windows or making more than a few deliveries a day. Thankfully the red sky has faded and the air quality is improving, so life is getting back to normal.
The most challenging aspect of Jayla’s work is being new to the industry. Early in her career, a contractor called her saying, “I need Bituthene 3000,” and laughing as she said, “I had no clue what that means.”
But the best advice Jayla would give to her younger self is – “Be confident. Even if you don’t know now, you will later. Reach out for help.” If you don’t reach out for help in the beginning, you will need to later.
Mentorship has been a key part of Jayla’s success and journey. Her high school track coach has been, and continues to be, a big influence in her life. Jayla appreciates that her mentor has been through a lot already and can help her navigate different parts of life. Her current boss, a branch manager in San Leandro, CA, has also helped Jayla grow by highlighting her strengths and giving guidance.
A good mentor, in Jayla’s words, is “someone to encourage you, and push you beyond what you think your limits are.”
Jayla seeks to bring people together both in her personal life, with a big friend group, and with her workplace. People in the Beacon branch perceive her as a joyful, inspiring presence. “I think they appreciate the difference that I bring to our branch. I like to have fun!” Jayla fills a whiteboard calendar with colorful markers of surprises, parties, birthday parties, work anniversaries, and more celebrations. Every year, she and a coworker plan a holiday party that is the highlight of the season with a White Elephant game. This year, with the looming shadow of COVID, they are planning how best to make people feel special and valued while maintaining social distance.
In her off hours, Jayla gives back to the community, inspired by her faith. “I am Christian, so that is a big part of my life.” She helps every other week with her church Three Crosses’ food pantry ministry. On Saturdays, they give out meals to more than 400 or more cars. She has volunteered at homeless shelters to not only help with the physical needs through meals and shelter, but also to help with advice, encouragement, and friendship for the people she has met.
Jayla’s senior quote was from Ayn Rand: “The question isn’t, ‘Who is going to let me?’ It’s, ‘Who’s Going to stop me?’” In a similar vein, one of her favorite verses is, “If God is for us, then who can be against us?”
Jayla’s favorite movie: “Rush Hour”
Jayla’s favorite book: “Becoming,” by Michelle Obama
Jayla’s hobbies: Going to the beach, mini golf, ukelele
By Esther Ehrenman, eCommerce Manager, Beacon Building Products