Practicing Mindfulness & Empathy

New Year’s resolutions are a time honored tradition; the new year signals a new start for many of us.  One of my annual  vows is to take steps to be a better communicator, with others and with myself.  One method I employ to communicate with myself is practicing mindfulness. The editors at Psychology Today define […]

ASCE Infrastructure Report Card

The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) prepares a Report Card for America’s Infrastructure every four years that grades each area of our infrastructure with a letter grade in the fashion of a school report card. The latest Report Card issued in 2013 , gave the country an overall grade of D+. ASCE estimates our […]

What is a Project?

What is a project?  According to the Project Management Institute a project is a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service or result. A project is temporary because it has a defined beginning and end in time, and therefore defined scope and resources. The short video identifies several types of projects to include […]

Under the Floor Boards

This past month my wife and I spent  a few days preparing to launch a sailboat that had been in storage for 4 years.  We soon discovered that the automatic switch on the bilge pump had failed and the boats bilge was filled with a few inches of water.  Mixed in with the water was […]

Making Meetings Productive

Some of the most important and practical knowledge I learned in college derived from the professor’s personal experience rather from a text book. These pearls of wisdom ranged from “Spray paint all your tools fluorescent orange” to a lengthy dissertation beginning with “Structural failures are seldom attributed to one major flaw, but rather a series […]

Cruising up the East Coast

This past month a friend asked me to move his sailboat from Beaufort North Carolina to Clinton Connecticut. I immediately began to plan my voyage, assemble my crew, and gather my supplies. I knew from past voyages if the conditions where ideal the trip would take 10 days. I also knew several factors could extend […]

Construction Apps for Tablets

The beginning of my career in construction also marked the beginning of my relationship with computers. The relationship has been rewarding. Advances in software, particularly scheduling, estimating, and design software, have contributed immensely to the success of the projects I have managed. When the Palm Pilot, the forerunner to the smartphone, was introduced over 20 […]

Optimistic Indicators for the Construction Industry

The year is off to an interesting start with a number of positive stories impacting the construction industry. The National Football League announced that Los Angeles will once again be the home of the Rams in a new 3.1 million square foot sports complex. In addition to the 6,000 seat stadium the project will include […]

Managing Stakeholder Expectations

The overarching goals of every project manager is to deliver a quality project, to the specified scope, on time, and within budget. Throughout my career I have heard many folks in my profession espouse that achieving all three is difficult and one must be sacrificed to achieve the other two. Arguments for and against this […]

Certification Qualifications Enhance Market Value

I often peruse the job postings for Construction Managers to get a feel for the state of the construction industry. The job descriptions offer me clues as to the type of construction that is prevalent and the geographic locations with active projects. I also pay attention to the qualifications employers are looking for, particularly specific […]