Smarter, Leaner, Faster

posted in: PrayWorks Blog | 0

I became interested in lean design and construction through my friend Don Taylor, president of Welty Building Company in Fairlawn, Ohio, a Cleveland suburb. Don and I are members of a peer learning organization (WPO/YPO) and we meet a few times a year to discuss business ideas. I was there a few years ago when he was hired to enhance and expand Akron Children’s Hospital. When the project concluded 2 full months ahead of schedule and more than 60 million dollars under the original total project target cost, I was there, too.

$60 million is a big number on a 240 million dollar total project basis, so I had to find out what happened…but that is another post.

I now have my own story. Friday, in my role as Owner’s Representative, I led the conclusion of repairs to a 7 building condominium project. We finished one and one half month ahead of schedule and $1,400,000 under the budget. Even better, the HOA’s rep gave us an A+ on quality!

Notably, I specified the use of The Last Planner System by the successful contractor. As the Owner’s Representative, I bid this project to a select list and awarded it to Pray Construction Company (the firm I founded 30+ years ago and sold in 2005). They in turn hired Lean Project Consulting, which hosted a boot camp and multiple pull planning session with the contractor, design and trade partners. We massaged the process over the following weeks and months. The result was quality and economy. To say this was a home run would be an understatement.

Lean construction is completely revolutionizing this industry. If you are an owner and would like to explore how this process can benefit you on your next project, please reach out to me. I will share my thoughts on logical next actions with you.