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    The Art of Storytelling

    October 29, 2015

    Over the years, I’ve come to appreciate the details that drive a compelling story. It doesn’t matter what kind of story; it can be a documentary, fiction or nonfiction like the incredible true account in the book Unbroken. I often find a new perspective on an old way of thinking or I can walk in the shoes of another person through their unique experiences. I know that what makes a good book great is not accidental luck by the author. There are no crash courses in book writing. It takes patience, talent, perseverance, and a commitment to excellence. This draws for me a parallel to the work that my teammates do each day.

    Being able to tell the story of the projects we construct is a critical piece of our history- and our future. The projects that we have executed well are the ones we are most proud of and the ones that our clients are most proud of also. During my time in the construction industry, I’ve had the opportunity to work on amazing projects. They were all unique in one way or another. Many had plots that were deeply complex, others had interesting characters, and they all had great endings.

    During the past two years, a team of my colleagues have been on a journey to discover what makes good projects great. The outcome of their discoveries allowed us to develop better tools and processes to execute our work and behavioral expectations so that our clients have the assurance that they’ll receive our “A Team” on every project, every time. I believe that the prelude to every great story that the Florida Division builds is Operational Excellence.

    Operational Excellence is our commitment to client advocacy and our ownership of a client’s dream as their relentless ally. If we take that seriously, our clients sleep well at night and we have fun while building their dream. Likewise, Operational Excellence is important to our project partners because we are taking them on a journey with us and that experience should be enjoyable. We are a secondary function of their business that provides them with long-term strategic success. In other words, if Operational Excellence is not at the core of our capabilities then we will fail to deliver on our promises to our clients and our partners and that can make for a bad ending to what could have been a great story.

    The stunning projects we build are a lasting legacy for our communities, project team members, and our clients. These “stories” are not created from a one-size fits all mentality or manufactured with predictable plots. To write a great story, you need a mindset of excellence. For us at Balfour Beatty it begins with Operational Excellence.