We all need mentors and others to look up to. Fortunately, for Friede & Associates, we have an entire network of mentors. Last week, some of our team members attended the Construction Leadership Network (CLN) conference in Tampa, Florida to practice win-win sharing. The CLN membership is comprised of a diverse group of entrepreneurs, commercial contractors, and construction industry providers from throughout the U.S. and Canada.
Our membership in the CLN enables us to exchange information, share both successes and lessons learned, and form life-long relationships with like-minded construction professionals. The CLN was formed on the principal of bringing together top construction entrepreneurs to exchange ideas and share best practices to improve the construction industry and companies like ours. The mission is simple: Share…Learn…Build.
Executive Vice President Scott Truehl and Business Development Consultant Matt Krogman, pictured right, spent three days in Tampa at the annual conference. And, although it was sunny and warm, they were inside learning about company differentiation, performance management, and how to find and develop the next generation of leadership.
Scott and Matt attended focus groups on marketing, business development, and time management. “The Construction Leadership Network offers a great resource for us as we can reach out to other leading contractors in North America to discuss challenges and opportunities we are encountering on our projects and also to identify “best practices” for everything from safety to marketing," says Scott.
Our team also learned to master seven actions for ensuring workplace safety. We met within peer groups and listened to panel experts talk about project management and C-Suite leadership. “The greatest benefit of sharing our experiences with some of the top contractors in North America is that we don’t need to ‘invent the wheel’ ourselves. Other contractors may have already created solutions for some of the new challenges we face, adds Scott. “The network also allows us to have open conversations with our peers to solicit their advice on marketing, sales, safety, hiring, scheduling, technology, and on and on in a casual and non-competitive environment. We know the other members want us all to succeed and to become the best contractors in each of our marketplaces. We also know that other network members are there for us if we need help in finding subcontractors in new market areas, or even joint venture partners for larger jobs,” says Scott.
Scott also presented a focus group on the subject of “Creating a Positive Company Culture.” This is the second year he has presented this well-attended focus group and he adds “I really enjoyed the feedback I received from the attendees. I also greatly appreciated the session I attended on Construction Owners and the challenges they are facing today. This panel discussion featured facility managers and developers and gave those in attendance a better understanding of what our clients may be looking for from their construction partners.”
Throughout the year, we are connected to the CLN membership by a web-based tool that enables us to communicate in forums, share documents, learn about each other’s capabilities, and strengthen our bonds. We value our membership in the CLN because it makes us better commercial contractors, and we can use the information we learn in our businesses as well as on the jobsite.
We are already looking forward to next year’s network meeting where we will have the opportunity to connect with our friends and mentors who share the same values and out-of-the-box thinking that we enjoy. Scott reflects that “The CLN represents one of the best sources of ongoing education and training for its membership because of the willingness of its members to openly share with each other for the greater good of the construction industry.”