Blogs



Yesterday after presenting an orientation for our LeanPlan Workout process to a group of suppliers & trades in Texas, a contractor named Mike walked up to me and two of the senior managers from the builder.

PB Builder of the Year DSLD shows how powerful and central the basics are. Creating excellence on such basic issues as scheduling and scopes of work creates the basis for an outstanding home builder. They continued driving excellence in all other areas of the business.

I am frequently asked, what is the right way to buy labor and materials? Should you use turnkey suppliers and trades or should you purchase and negotiate labor and material separately. Let me be 100% clear about this. I have the answer.

Construction drawings are complex and getting them right involves a whole lot of moving parts. From working with builder and trades countrywide I have uncovered the five most common areas where mistakes are made:

What and where do I start to improve? This is a common question and while we need to balance the cost and impact to identify the real bang for the buck let’s start with the basics.

The Lean Perspective is by no means limited to sticks and bricks issues on the construction site. When we talk Lean building we are really talking Lean operations: providing value & eliminating waste in product and process wherever it is found.

A UK study of those using the ISO9001 Quality Management System in the construction industry had a number of interesting findings that provide key lessons.

Have you ever looked at a detail on a plan and scratched your head wondering how that was going to work? Sometimes the details that show up on plans leave us all wondering what the architect was thinking?

Last year PB received an official complaint letter from a high level staffer at the AIA, basically saying that I was being unfair to Architects.

Often the main block to creativity is actually a mental block. Thoughts or comments such as these can stop creativity in its tracks.

When was the last time you did some walk arounds in your business, asked your customer service or construction teams some basic questions, spoke to some of your customers face to face?

One of the most depressing/astounding/frustrating things about the current race for president has been the complete lack of attention to housing.

Last week I nagged you about elevation renderings, this week the focus is on floor plan renderings. Floor plan renderings are an easy way to stand out from the crowd. The vast majority of builders present a simple black-and-white CAD blackline drawing of their floor plan selections.

If asked, I would be hard-pressed to pick a favorite author, but if forced to choose just one I would go with Antoine St. Exupery.

The idea of running a 100 mile race ten years ago was as inconceivable and foreign to me as the possibility of a 6 year real estate crash.  As it turned out, last month I got to experience both of these.

Traveling around the country I see a lot of renderings - most of them leave a whole lot to be desired. The worst are the black and white CAD drawings with a computer generated tree or two to add some flavor. I also see a lot of 3D computer renderings that are cold and uninviting.

One of the greatest misconceptions about Lean process and methods is that they cheapen the product. Lean is first and always about value, and the customer perception of value at each price point is a critical component.

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