Notes of Encouragement

December 2019

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.—Robert Frost, “The Road Less Traveled”

The quote above is one of my favorite quotes and something I have strived to do throughout my life. Over the years, in my work in the construction field, I saw firsthand that the most successful construction companies use that same idea of the road less traveled on their roads to success. They chart the course, they create the way to continuous improvement, they model the tenets of what it takes to exceed expectations every day.
This marks my last article of SuperVision. For more than 20 years AWCI’s Construction Dimensions has given me a great platform to talk about my passion—how to make work in the construction industry more productive for all players in the process. It has been a pleasure to write these articles, and I thank the AWCI staff for the privilege. Thanks also to all you readers, especially those who have contacted me over the years with a thanks or additional wisdom. I look forward to providing future articles to AWCI’s Construction Dimensions—it’s a publication that I believe is a vital tool for AWCI membership. Following are a few final notes of encouragement to all of you.
Keep revitalizing yourself, your work and your organization. With all the changes that occur along with ongoing turmoil and transition occurring in an organization, it may be a challenge to maintain the will to succeed and continuously improve. Stay passionate about the end goal.
Commitment is the glue that binds us to the organization. Investment can be deep or shallow. Deep commitment leads to optimal results. The desire to give energy, knowledge and skills that go the extra mile will end in great results. Deep commitment entails a belief that making a difference is possible.  
Rekindling employee commitment is the primary challenge. Keep building trust among team members on your way to excellence. Trust is the key to gaining your people’s willingness to give on the job.
The lessons for the future are clear, and maintaining a future-focus is imperative as you implement the big things and the little things for your company. Use every opportunity to learn new skills and keep monitoring job success along the way.
Be self-reliant. Think about yourself as a business of one.
Be connected. You must be a team player.
Be curious. Continuous improvement is the way. Keep learning and improving yourself and your people.
Be reflective. Heed the voice within—your gut/intuition often tells you what you need to hear.
Be appreciative. Know that your greatest resources are your team members.
Be positive. Always look for the positive, constructive and developmental answers to obstacles.
The ongoing challenge for tomorrow is to chart a course of the possible. Dare to keep your sight and other senses on it. Continuous improvement is a journey. There may be setbacks and even failures, but you will have a higher level of success when you persevere to not accept things as they are, but how things could possibly be.  
Thanks for the opportunity to engage in an exciting discussion all these years. All the best to you!

Norb Slowikowski is president of Slowikowski & Associates, Inc., Darien, Ill. To contact him, email [email protected].

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