Pallatella Builders is the fifth career for Long Island remodeler Jack Pallatella (seated, front, center). That’s a good thing for him, because all those other vocations—in linguistics, advertising, Chinese translation, and international banking, at last count—give him “instant rapport” with the tough clientele of stock and bond traders, investment company owners, and harried professionals who live along the island’s north shore.

This customer base wants mahogany libraries, paneled dens, complete fireplace surrounds—luxury remodeling projects where anything less than perfection is not an option. Demanding? There’s got to be another word. And technologically savvy. Meaning he has to be as well.

“The instant gratification they’re used to doesn’t happen in construction,” Pallatella notes. To please these Triple A personalities, Pallatella subs out major portions of his jobs so that his core crew of seven carpenters can focus on the finesse work. “When you’re looking at finished product, what are you looking at? Not the Sheetrock.”