On Being Successful

Laura M. Porinchak / August 2015

AWCI’s mission is to help its members run a more successful business, and its flagship publication (the one you’re reading right now) does its best to fulfill that mission. This issue of AWCI’s Construction Dimensions is definitely poised to help you be successful in one way or another.
    
We start with AWCI member contractors naming names in our feature article that’s about technology; it starts on page 30. It’s hard to stay on top of technology when new hardware and software get created or updated every day, so we turned to our members to ask them what they are using. From apps to estimating software, they tell us what is working for them. Also discussed are ways to keep from getting overloaded with information along with how you can use today’s technology to lure job recruits to your company.
    
The next article tells you about AWCI’s new Project Manager Development Series. This new program was begun when AWCI member contractors voiced their need for experienced workers, specifically project managers. During the recent recession, many companies lost their PMs, and now the industry is having trouble getting them back. So instead of trying to lure back people who have found greener pastures in other industries, AWCI’s program is helping to train the next generation today. The webinars have had their first dry-run, and we’re ready to bring the program to the masses via the Internet. Flip to page 38 to learn all about it.
    
As you can see (and as if you didn’t already know), project management and attracting new workers are the hot topics. In addition to the two articles I just mentioned, make sure you visit our Management Desk (page 16) and Supervision (page 19) columns. In Supervision, Norb Slowikowski starts a new series on what it takes to be a successful project manager. In Management Desk, Doug Bellamy continues his series and this month covers how to make the best use of the great and loyal employees you already have.
    
Finally, AWCI member manufacturers get their turn in the Buyers’ Guide that starts on page 42. This annual compilation of the industry’s best and their products is a resource used year-round. AWCI’s member suppliers and their products will appear in next month’s issue.

On another note, a couple of the articles in this issue reference change and thinking outside the box. I think we all know that change is a necessary evil and often something we can’t control. That’s where the ability to think outside the box comes in handy. But what if the box itself is the problem?
    
My buddy Rob Aird, president of Robert A. Aird, Inc. in Maryland, recently sent me some before and after photos of a storage container on a job site on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. The job site is 44 condominium buildings that Aird is restoring, and someone in the area asked if the unattractive seabox could be concealed. The solution, I thought, was quite creative: The resident asked to paint a mural on it. You can see in the photo that the locals now have something more than just a rusty old container to look at. Rob tells me that the residents are indicating the mural is a refreshing change. Is that great PR for our industry or what?!
    
I should also mention that Rob agreed to furnish the paint for the mural. Bonus!
    
He may not know it, but Rob’s actions may have inspired a local youngster to consider a career in construction, all because he was just being a nice guy.
    
Could you do something like that in your community? Have you done it already? What “outside the box” ideas have you had that show how the people in construction are good people—and that construction is a highly visible job that should be considered for a career? Tell me about it (porinchak@awci.org) and if enough of you do, we’ll put together a story. It’s all in the name of helping the industry as a whole to grow—and helping you to run a more successful business.