John McLean, a seasoned architect, offers up common-sense ideas for keeping any job predictably on track in this informative, common sense based article.
Candid communication is vital to minimize construction problems. I have experienced most if not all of the points that he discusses in my dealings.
John points out 20 Considerations that help a project run smoothly;
I chose 10 points out of his 20 that I feel are super important.
Here’s my TOP 10:
1. Excellent people make mistakes. Expect that they will continue to do so.
2. When selecting a professional with whom to work, the first criterion should be character; the second, competence; the third, dedication.
3. Clients who receive the best service are those from whom trust is ample, enthusiasm is overt, information is complete and payment is prompt.
4. Comparisons between seemingly similar projects often lead to incorrect expectations rather than provide useful information.
5. “You get what you pay for” applies to building. Designing and building quality take care; care takes time; time costs money.
6. When a project’s cost exceeds its budget, it is usually because (1) the budget was optimistic and not realistic, (2) the changing cost of the evolving design was not monitored, and/or (3) the client’s needs and preferences were not fully articulated before the start of the work.
7. Many people believe that they know a good deal about architectural design. What they do not realize is how much more they need to know to do design well, with distinction, refinement and grace.
8. For construction to be done efficiently, most design decisions need to be made in advance of building. If made during construction, these decisions can interrupt the work flow and increase its cost. Late design decisions are also more difficult to incorporate into the rest of the design.
9. Architects have the patience to plan. Builders have the savvy to improvise. Improvisation, however, is not a substitute for planning. The purpose of planning is to achieve predictable results. The purpose of improvising is to maintain work progress.
10. A construction project involves people with wide variations in skill, experience, intelligence and desire. Effective project management optimizes the conditions that allow people to perform at their best.