Of Interest...

3 Free Software Programs with Powerful Impact for Any Industry

3 Free Software Programs with Powerful Impact for Any Industry
3-D modeling, impressive looking timelines and e-books with pages you can flip, zoom or print; use these software technologies individually or combine them for even greater impact! Here is a short review of three free software products with a link to a presentation that combines all of them. 3-D modeling SketchUp (Make) is free program that provides a lot of functionality to facilitate all kinds of designing. SketchUp can help create many different types of 3-D models. I have used it to create 3-D models of construction...

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Selection Sheets — Make Them Interactive!

Selection Sheets — Make Them Interactive!
One of your customers just made one simple change… How much time is spent: Processing and track the change order? Updating the office file? Updating the budget? Updating the field file? Updating the contractor/vendor? Example: The site superintendent knows Mrs. Jones, the customer job ABC-123, had mentioned  she might add hardwood floors in the family room.  He/she checks the field file and doesn’t see a change order. How much time is spent: By the supervisor double checking with the office? Revising...

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Think Outside the Box, then Check Off Your To-Do List!

Think Outside the Box, then Check Off Your To-Do List!
 So what is the “box” anyway? I’ve heard the “box” described like this: Think of a single dot as a bit of information in the brain’s knowledge base. When a problem is encountered, the brain recalls these bits of information and starts connecting dots, it uses these connections between the multiple bits of information retained in its knowledge base to solve the problem. After solving the same problem a number of times, the connections become automatic. So, when faced with the same problem again, the...

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My Hardest Job Ever; Lasted Only 2 Weeks!

My Hardest Job Ever; Lasted Only 2 Weeks!
Homebuilder and retiree export know-how from CNY to Poland The houses rising in Europe look the same as those in Manlius. By J. Trout Lowen.  Staff Writer. Syracuse Herald-Journal. June 5, 1995 Amid the brick, concrete and stucco homes that stand as trademarks of communist-era Poland, something unusual is taking shape on Warsaw’s suburban landscape. In Lomianki, 12 miles west of Warsaw, a dozen Polish carpenters are at work erecting a pair of wood-frame townhomes that wouldn’t look out of place in a Syracuse suburb. That’s...

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Communicating Technical Details

Communicating Technical Details
When communicating technical details, remember who you are talking to. Alter industry specific jargon to match the audience. I don’t mean use “clean” language with the customer, instead of the foul language you let fly with a subcontractor. No, actually you should have only one way of talking; whether around the client, front office, subcontractor codes official, company president or your kids; that is clean and respectful. Depending on your audience, anticipate the need to present some of your...

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Good Ideas Have No Ownership

Good Ideas Have No Ownership
That is what I believe. Ideas are only a thought, they are useless until someone does something to make them into something. Good ideas are meant for building upon. Good ideas are meant for action. And I personally think good ideas are meant for sharing. Some of the ideas on this site are original and some are variations of ideas that have been around in some form or another for a while. All of them are ideas that I have watched make a positive difference in the building process. A majority of the resources on this...

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Phone Apps for Construction Managers (and Others)

Phone Apps for Construction Managers (and Others)
I remember, decades ago, when you were a somebody if you needed a pager at your job. After that came the portable bag phone the size of a lunch box. Then came portable phones about the size of a walki-talki, then smaller and smaller flip-phones. Now there are the so called smart phones. They are amazing because they allow you to do so much more than make & take phone calls. I’m not a phone person, but I am an apps guy. Apps that make a routine function easier are great. (I’m still a wristwatch...

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30+ Green Building Practices in Every New “BUILDER” Home

30+ Green Building Practices in Every New “BUILDER” Home
 You Need to Take the Credit! I’ll bet if you take time to go over the program requirements for Energy Star, LEEDS, and the NAHB Green Building Program, you’ll find there are dozens of green building features in every home you build. Just because many of them are required by Building and Energy codes doesn’t mean you should not get credit for them! And equally important, your customers should be aware they are helping the planet as well. I’ve pointed this out to sales and marketing in the past....

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