Inch By Inch

Mike, Estimator/Project Manager for a civil construction company in Portland, OR, told Session 7B of Turbo’s Leadership Development Lab (LDL):


“On a mid-size project we had been told we were being awarded, the design team mentioned a small addendum to be priced before the contract could be signed. The ‘small’ addendum ended up being 180 drawings (75% of the total original drawings) and a 2” pile of revised specifications. Normally when a large change like this is required, the designer ‘bubbles’ or highlights the changes to be made. This time they issued it all as ‘new’ with no notes for what had been changed.

“Needless to say, I was not excited about the task of laboriously comparing each of the new drawings to the old drawings one at a time. So, I looked down at my ‘5X Enthusiasm‘ sticker and decided to make a plan. After some thought, I broke up the work into smaller chunks that I could do in an hour or two, then set out to get one chunk done a day. Slowly, but surely, I completed my entire review and documented all the price impacts.


“When we turned in our revised price, the owner was surprised by the increase in costs. The architect and engineer had told the owner that no changes were made of this magnitude to the drawings and that we were in error. A meeting was scheduled with all parties to discuss the changes. My detailed, documented review helped us explain why our price increased so much and showed with clearly documented detail, that the design team had indeed added significant scope to the project.

“The lesson I learned from this experience is when I am faced with a large, daunting task, it helps me to break it down into easier chunks with a daily plan for achievement.

“The action I call you to take when a task seems insurmountable is break it into small, easy parts that you see as doable.

“The benefit you will gain is the small, bite-sized pieces will make it feel easier and this will boost your confidence as you finish each piece.”

Mike made this bid specs revision task almost seem easy. Make no mistake about it, no one in Mike’s position is happy to have to start over on a major revision after having completed all the detailed pricing on the original bid request. None of us like the idea of having to start all over again on something we think is finished. It is even more difficult when it is piled on top of the routine work we are already required to complete, it can seem daunting. So the next time it happens to you, instead of getting overwhelmed, just hit pause, break the task into bite-sized pieces that are easily digestible and take one step at time, inch by inch anything’s a cinch.


Turbo’s Leadership Development Lab is returning to Vancouver and Salem

Turbo’s Leadership Development Lab (LDL) dramatically enhances your leadership team’s ability to give supportive feedback, build trust, gain respect, sell ideas, and empower others for improved results.

Turbo Leadership Systems® approach maximizes participation and minimizes interruption to work. Your managers, superintendents, foremen, crew leaders and staff make the biggest investment, the investment of their time. We make every moment matter, ensuring the time invested pays back dividends quickly and are sustained.

The next open enrollment LDL is scheduled to start shortly in Vancouver and we are also building a class in the Salem area.

Class size is limited, so call 503-691-2867 or email today!