Jon Nyone Stands Ready to Grow Otak’s International Reach
Sometimes a great hire, one who stands to be a key in the remaking of an organization, comes from the least likely of places. This was the case for Jon Nyone, Otak’s International Market Sector Leader who was watching his younger sister’s soccer game when he happened to meet Joshua Dodson, Senior Project Manager at DAY CPM. That meeting started an internship that rolled into seven-plus years of work beginning with DAY CPM and then eventually OTAK, and on to where Jon is today, ready to advance into the technology revolution of sorts for Otak’s international work.
Jon credits his rise in career to Otak’s willingness and encouragement for him to take the lead on some large, high-profile projects. As an intern, he was involved with the Collaborative Life Sciences Building on Portland’s waterfront where he worked with owners from OHSU, OSU, and Portland State to manage, primarily, the vast portfolio of medical equipment. Four years after the start of the Portland building, work was complete and Jon was no longer just an intern. He said learning how to navigate the sometimes tricky politics of such a public building was critical and provided him lifelong skills to tap into.
He jokes that Otak management asked “what else can we dump on Jon,” but he recognizes the diverse experience he’s had right from the start of his career. The list of projects he was able to work on in a short period of time directly contributed to being able to grow quickly.
While Jon was not looking for an international career, he had studied and presented on the framework of the Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) construction method and that happened to be what Otak was looking to introduce in a proposal for a project in Korea. “I had studied and presented on it and had lived it on a few different projects I worked on so I had lots of hands-on education, but who would have known, five years later, I’d be traveling to Korea to present on it,” Jon said.
Jon took three week-long trips to Korea where he learned the challenges of working within a different culture on medical research and pharmaceutical development center. The purpose was to incorporate and help the team apply IPD principles into the processes of their projects. It was a huge learning experience, particularly as most of the team had no familiarity with IPD. My boss had a deep trust in me, but it was nerve-wracking, to say the least. What it takes to put one of these together is a huge effort. You can’t underestimate the difficulty of something like that,” he said.
With some new experience under his belt, Jon is now tackling the next new thing that he says has the potential to bring great growth for Otak on the international front. “We’re on the verge of some exciting developments in the technology sector,” he said. Jon and his team are working on the unification of the global strategy with Otak’s partner firms to enter into the mission-critical market on some large-scale, global projects. He demurred on offering any more information as the planning process is proceeding.
“Jon never shies away from a challenge and in fact seems innately drawn towards projects defined by their complexity. It makes him a keen match for leading our International practice and advancing projects with global impact. He’s a pacesetter that keeps the rest of us sharp with an ability to drive collaboration and engineer best practices for others to not only follow, but also build and continually develop on,” said Sarah Oaks, Operation Manager for DAY CPM.
Over his years at DAY CPM and now Otak, Jon says he’s developed a good history of how the company has operated, what works and what doesn’t. He feels he’s been able to help the organization bridge some legacy conditions and translate those into tangible strategic shifts to help position Otak for sustainability and future growth. But overall, he credits his success to the teams he works with. “I have a deep appreciation for the team dynamic and putting the whole before the individual, but not losing sight of the uniqueness we each bring to the table. It’s a blessing to work with so many people much smarter than me.” His knack for getting along with others and his flexible and adaptable approach fit the mold for future international project success.