Have you noticed how many difficulties in construction relate to broken relationships rather than poor construction?. At the heart of so many heated matters is a personality conflict. The pain is revealed in all the letter writing and posturing. Often, one who may feel he was not treated with respect now demands respect in the form of getting a “pound of flesh”.
We’ve noticed that those who continually do well clearly value their key relationships. They treat subcontractors, owners, suppliers, and design professionals with respect. Through mutual compromise, they try to make each other look good. They “stroke the feathers down”. They quickly break off with those who do not share this philosophy.
Recently, an experienced civil engineer shared with us his view of current trends in his industry. Although technology has changed, he said the most important change has been the gradual decline of mutual trust and respect in our industry. This is a mistake. Focus on building relationships, and your long-run profitability will increase. In tough economic times when gross profits are thin and stress levels run high, it is especially important that we remember to treat each other with honesty, respect, and common courtesy.