Lean Into It!

By Scott Dunwald, Karges-Faulconbridge, Inc., SMPS Twin Cities Member

Lean Construction is changing the way conventional construction projects are delivered.  The industry is moving towards a Lean Construction approach. Like many new things, it feels a little uncomfortable at first because it is different. Lean Construction requires respect and intense collaboration from all parties involved early in the process.  The initial time invested in the collaboration and planning will save both time and money further on during the project.  Lean Construction is not a single act or something that can be implemented in a day; it is a journey. The journey starts by convincing one person at a time to implement a Lean Construction method; as more people commit the result is an improved project.

At our kick-off education program of the 2014-2015 season, Perry Thompson of Parsons Electric gave SMPS Twin Cities an informative presentation on what it means to be "lean". Here are some highlights:

  • Lean Construction follows  Plan –> Do –> Check –> Act methodology. Process results in automatic Built In Quality.
  • LC Reduces waste (time/money/materials) and improves customer value. 
  • No matter how efficient your process is, there is always room for improvement.
  • Respect is of paramount importance for this process to work.
  • If LC procedures are properly followed when arguments do arise, the argument results in providing the best value to the owner.
  • Change is uncomfortable, but can result in value to all stakeholders.
  • Try to get your team on board and start seeing the power of lean construction today!

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