Envision a group of producers cutting their way through the jungle with machetes. They’re the producers, the problem solvers. They’re cutting through the undergrowth, clearing it out.
The managers are behind them, sharpening their machetes, writing policy and procedure manuals, holding muscle development programs, bringing in improved technologies and setting up working schedules and compensation programs for machete wielders.
The leader is the one who climbs the tallest tree, surveys the entire situation, and yells, “Wrong jungle!”
– Stephen R. Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, page 101
Since it was written back in the 90s this analogy has changed the way many leaders and managers throughout the world think and act. As well as highlighting a key difference between leaders and managers the story plays out one of the key habits from the book – ‘Habit 2 – Begin with the End in Mind’
As he explains, if you don’t make a conscious effort to visualize who you are and what you want in life, then you empower other people and circumstances to shape you and your life by default. In other words if you don’t take the time out to choose your jungle, you could spend your life working in the wrong one.
Its an incredibly powerful concept, and we’ve been thinking a lot recently about how it applies to the world of Construction and Façades.
Looking back, the management skills are obvious, throughout the industry. We’ve all got really good at tweaking designs to get every bit of performance out of them, hunting out long lists of VE options and savings, shaving extra millimetres off to maximise the sight lines and searching out the most sustainable suppliers for each material.
But have we been doing it in the wrong jungle?
What if there was a fundamentally different façade solution available that’s a lot more aligned with the specific development objectives? One with significant cost and carbon benefits, or perhaps a lot faster to install on site with increased NIA, and that the team hadn’t even thought of? Surely its worth climbing the tree to find out?
We think it is, and that’s why we’ve set up our team of Façade Strategists to help our clients challenge the status quo and find out what is possible on their developments.