Experiences in BIG: Keehn Hanneman

Barton International Group welcomed Keehn into its Business Development Department in the fall of 2016. During his time in the organization, Keehn’s role has mainly been to reach out to potential clients in an effort to market the group and help bring in new and different projects.  

Joining BIG was “something [Keehn] always wanted to do” ever since he learned about the organization. He had realized it was prestigious and looked up to a lot of people who were already in the group, so he finally applied and joined his junior year. After joining the group, he was elated to be given the opportunity to be around driven and successful people that he had not known before. Additionally, he has been able to build both personal and professional connections and friendships.

As a result of being in Barton International Group, Keehn gained “a more practical sense of what [he’s] doing in the business world.” He learned how to talk to different types of people and obtain information on a different level than how he was used to. In order to accomplish this, he had to learn what questions to ask and “how to dig deeper into understanding a job.”  

Keehn worked on a project with Building Controls and Services over the summer, where he was able to experience the validation that comes from a successful business venture. After completing the necessary market research for the project, he found that he enjoyed presenting to company executives. The project team was able to work directly with the employees of BCS, allowing for Barton International Group to be “more in touch with what they were doing,” an aspect that Keehn liked a lot. Ultimately, he found the project to be, although challenging, very rewarding in the end.  

Throughout his time in Barton International Group, Keehn has learned how upsetting it can be to “hit a slump,” or a period of time when there are not a lot of projects or events occurring. However, he emphasized the importance of “pushing through and finding new ways of doing things,” because “in the end it pays off.”

Keehn will miss the constant innovation of Barton International Group. “There is always something new going on,” he told me, whether it is a new project, trying out a different process, or someone in the group starting a new business, the members of BIG are always up to date with new things. Through this fast paced innovation, Keehn has been able to watch his fellow members grow and accomplish their goals inside and outside of the organization.

After graduating, Keehn will work as an accounting analyst at Koch Industries – a job that he will easily excel in as a result of the experience he gained during his time in Barton International Group.

Written by Zaena Helm