In a sort of positive flip of the old hands’ contest, “Scissors, Paper, Rock”, instead of how each participant overpowers each other, I see how each component helps the other to do our common job in our environmental construction business: support the client’s needs/wants.
Each “Leg” has its individual work:
Designers must understand the client’s needs and desires, site and budget, use that information to create an image and make a plan to fulfill those intents, and see this image through to realization.
Contractors must assemble the tools, labor, and materials to fulfill the client’s plan, deal with site conditions, weather and budget to complete the work, and, in many cases, insure the project through a warranty period to success.
Material suppliers must anticipate the demands of the construction with advance production, many times months or years ahead, must provide for timely availability of those materials, and must have those materials on-site when needed.
The cross members in the stool are the websites, the communication tools, the financing, the brokers, the freighters and others that facilitate the progress.
The grease for the wheels is this: if we each take time to see the squeaky points each partner faces from his point of view, we can each do our job to help one another and support the client, who, after all, is PAYING for all of this.
If designers would work to assist in and understand the client’s wants, communicate with the partners their intents in design early on, work to assist the others in planning, and be involved throughout the installation; and
if the contractors would understand and intend to accomplish the plans of the design, communicate as early as possible their needs in supply to material suppliers, and make their best effort to transform the plan to placement; and
if material suppliers would listen to design desires and include them in production planning, communicate their production results to the others, and make sure materials arrive on-site with just-in-time delivery in condition, quality and quantity to meet specifications, then all of this filters down to:
Communication, Understanding, Cooperation, and, most importantly, Recognition that it’s the Client who sits on top of the stool.
And as I will always close: