Andres Boral, 34
While enrolled in the MBA program at Florida Gulf Coast University, Andres Boral had to put together a business plan. He created one for an engineering firm, drawing from his experiences working at a company where he had ideas for improvements but lacked the authority to execute them. That laid for foundation for him to launch his own firm in 2015.
“I always had a desire to start something on my own,” he says. “Writing a business plan [during his MBA program] was basically an indicator that the time was there for me to do it.”
That company, Estero-based Boral Engineering & Design, has now completed almost 300 projects since inception and has seven employees. Boral and his team work to create mutually beneficial relationships with clients, a negotiating strategy discussed during his MBA program. “A large percent of our work comes from repeat clients,” he says. “That’s what everyone wants.”
Starting his own company required Boral to be courageous. “Knowing that there were things that were uncertain, not knowing how things were going to look in six months or a year — that was the biggest thing to overcome in retrospect,” he says. “I think that it was having enough faith to make that decision and just trusting that things were going to work out.”
His faith has been a major career motivator and inspires him to offer low-cost engineering and design services to nonprofits. “I always wanted to merge my career with my faith; I think that whenever someone does that, they find true fulfillment,” he says. “When I started learning about leadership and purpose for my life, I understood there was a reason why I became an engineer, and it was greater than just me. I wanted to see how I could use the gifts and resources I had to help other people.”
Boral has big plans for his engineering company and another venture he started, Boral Properties & Management. The latter is expanding its rental portfolio, and the engineering firm just started its largest residential project to date.
“I have very clear and defined dreams for my future,” Boral says. “I feel like I know exactly what I’m after in all the different areas of my life. The expectations of the things to come is what motivates me and inspires me to keep going and wake up early in the morning and start my day. My dreams are like my fuel.”
Travel also helps inspire him professionally and personally. “I work really hard, but then I like to take some time off and reconnect,” Boral says. “My life is way more than what I do.”
City of Residence: Estero
Birthplace: Santa Cruz
Years in the area: 18
Marital Status/Children: Single / 0
Alma Mater/Degree: Florida Gulf Coast University – Master in Business Administration and Bachelor in Civil Engineering
What community group or organization are you most involved with? I created a nonprofit division to offer civil engineering services to local organizations that are making a positive impact in our community. I also dedicate time to mentoring students and speaking at events for various organizations.
Are you working from the company office, home office or hybrid? I work from the company office. I have a stand-up desk and lots of windows and plants in my office which makes it feel like I’m outdoors. I also love that it’s located at Coconut Point next to lots of restaurants and shoppes.
What's the weirdest job you've ever had? Or the weirdest task you've ever been assigned? I wouldn't say that I have had a weird job but I worked as a barista at a coffee shop in Olde Naples while in high school which is where I became a coffee aficionado.
What's your top tip for being productive? It starts with my morning routine, before my work day begins, I take care of myself physically, intellectually, spiritually and emotionally to increase my cognitive bandwidth and access higher levels of thinking which result in increased productivity.
If you could have a side hustle, what would it be? I would consider both of my businesses to be my side hustles. I split my time between them and I’m very passionate about what I do so it doesn’t feel like work.
What's your favorite off-hours activity? Paddle boarding at the beach, traveling and fine dining, crossfit and weightlifting, reading at a coffee shop.
What's the most significant item on your life bucket list — and what's keeping you from completing it? To travel to 50 countries. There isn’t anything that is keeping me from completing it as I will reach 50 by the end of this year.
What's your favorite podcast? I don’t have a particular favorite but I listen to a lot of different podcasts on leadership, mindset, real estate, faith, health and fitness.
At what percentage on your phone do you start to get Low Battery Anxiety? I don’t. When my phone is about to die I see it as an opportunity to enjoy the moment, to practice self awareness and to disconnect from the world.
What are the top three apps used on your smartphone? The Whoop app, the Audible app, and the Bible app.
What books are you reading now? Superlife by Darin Olien, Crazy Faith by Michael Todd, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
What's your go-to music genre, band or act to be inspired? I’m a melomaniac. I enjoy different kinds of music depending on the type of inspiration I’m seeking.
Who would play you in the movie of your life? It would have to be someone fearless.
Where is your happy place? My secret spot at a secluded beach nearby.
Describe yourself in three words: Passionate, visionary, faithful
Who is your mentor for your career and why? During the different stages of my career I have had several mentors which I’m extremely grateful for. I believe throughout my entire career my main mentor has been God. He has been a wonderful counselor, a mighty helper, and a wise teacher. One of my first mentors was Sandra Kauanui. She was my professor at FGCU for my MBA. It was in her class that I wrote my first business plan which resulted in starting my own engineering company.
What are the biggest lessons you have learned from your mentor? The biggest lesson I have learned from my mentor is to have faith that every dream I have is possible and that everything I do will work out for my good. I owe the success of my businesses to having enough faith to make decisions when uncertainty and fear are still present. Faith has allowed me to always take the next step while still not knowing all the details, to reach for the next level at every stage of my career and to undertake greater ventures.
I have learned to move forward taking calculated risks and then wait to see how things unfold favorably. This lesson is responsible for starting the businesses, to scaling the real estate portfolio, to increasing the number of clients and projects and all of my achievements.
One of the lessons I learned from Sandra Kauanui is to practice win-win negotiations. I learned that both parties have to win in a negotiation to maintain a lasting business relationship. The application of this lesson has resulted in most of our business being from repeat clients. Our clients love working with us because I’m always looking for ways for them to win.