Prepare to be Prepared: The Greatest Teams Are Aligned

To have success in college football in 2021, the preparation starts more than half a year before the stadium lights ever turn on. Legendary coaches like Nick Saban master preparation and team alignment, assuring everyone on the team has bought into the vision and mission of individual and team excellence. On game day, everyone knows their job, does their job and knows the job of the player lined up next to them. Alignment and buy-in has led teams to dynasty status.

The same opportunity exists in design and construction. But, as an industry we haven’t focused on alignment the way these elite teams have – and we should, given the challenges of today’s construction market. With unprecedented supply chain and labor market challenges, we can no longer just depend on a typical pre- construction phase for project prep work. In this spirit, Impact Development Management is focused on building relationships and trust, relying on the expertise in the room, and promoting genuine partnership in a way that supports successful project outcomes.

To be prepared, teams must work together towards the same goal. Here are a few benefits offered by aligning teams early in the development, design, and construction process:

  • Reinforces a team-mentality. Project delivery, like football, is a team sport. The process involves many companies, but we are all one team, with one mission. When everyone has that mindset, projects flow.

  • Strengthens the trust factor. When we know more about the other team member’s challenges and needs, we build connections, and we collaborate more. Collaboration builds trust.

  • Fosters proactive communication. If we ask more questions, earlier in the process, we avoid issues entirely or at least make them less of an issue.  Schedule conflicts can be dealt with sooner. Misunderstandings are uncovered earlier. Escalation of an issue is clearer to all parties, making resolution faster.

  • Clarifies expectations within each role. You can’t manage what you don’t understand. Reduce confusion and waste by getting clear up front who is responsible for what. Make sure everyone understands which deadlines are absolutes with no flexibility.

  • Heightens accountability. There is something powerful about verbally owning and claiming our roles and responsibilities in a collective group.

  • Generates a solutions-oriented approach. Having the right people in the room before design or construction begins means more pragmatic, realistic problem-solving. Rework leads to more unproductive activity and project burnout.

  • Streamlines workflows and decision-making. When we all get on the same page early, problems can be addressed more efficiently and decisions made faster.

  • Leans out the design and construction process. More alignment means less waste, lower costs, fewer changes and a higher quality deliverable.

Closing: Just because teams wear the same jersey does not mean they are necessarily aligned. Being intentional about creating a collaborative environment is important to project success. To facilitate masterful delivery and more efficient and value-driven project outcomes, get in touch with Jason Hughes or Marcus Vess at Impact Development Management.

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