Working with Subcontractors as Partners
Over the years of having subcontractors, vendors, and suppliers, whether I was working as General Contractor, Professional Construction Management Firm as Owner’s Representative, or a Subcontractor myself, treating the teams involved in the successful delivery of our projects as project partners has been key in our success.
Clients see the synergies, and the camaraderie. The sum of the parts becomes [operationally] greater than the whole and it shows. One of our key mentoring themes when we welcome new partners or new crews onto client projects is ‘individually we each have our knowledge and talents – and can do a lot. But we cannot finish the project. Together! We can accomplish some pretty special things.’
‘Those are nice words’, some of our new partners say. But when they see that Orion holds true to those nice words – live and perform by those words – that’s when the dynamics of the team start to change. It’s palpable.
Why would you let a partner’s business get hurt? If we are only as strong as our weakest link, and the client considers you the leader of a project, it’s fundamentally counterintuitive to have an us versus them strategy. We can’t necessarily control cost expectations in all cases. Why not have your teams get creative to solve those issues? That effort helps foster the team mentality – we’re in this together. Maybe we find a different way to build and deliver the project within the constraints. If you’ve solved the challenge within the budget, you have a happy client. If your client sees what their budget buys through exhausting the options and agrees that the budget will not bring what satisfies the design, you have a fantastic client who is – also part of the team. What a wonderful place to be.
Orion Managed Services, LLC.