Beyond the Build

Construction Trends

Trust & Intellectual Property Go Hand in Hand

We are finishing a project that features a technology element so proprietary that there are no drawings. Instead, the system manufacturer sent employees to direct which components go where for our “rough in.” This served to protect the intellectual property.

Our team took a number of steps to minimize confusion and maximize productivity on this highly specialized job. First, we dealt with a quality firm and secondly we trusted. A rare word sometimes in the world we live in.

A few other things we did to ensure successful installation: 

  • Developed a line of communication with the appropriate personnel early on. Maintaining contact with the onsite representative was vital for us.
  • Before starting our project, we visited other projects in various stages of installation, asking a ton of questions to strengthen our trust in the trade contractor.
  • Established a clear schedule with the manufacturer. We needed to ensure there were no misunderstandings since we were basically in the dark.

As we close the job, I’m reminded of what one US president said many years ago: “Trust, but verify.” Also, be a friend to trade contractors. Offering assistance wherever possible could mean you get asked back in the future.

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Merrill Stewart Jr.

Merrill Stewart is Founder and CEO of The Stewart/Perry Company, a commercial building contractor based in Birmingham.