The Housing Chronicles Blog: How we got here -- and how we get out

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

How we got here -- and how we get out

Philip Simmons, previously a Division President for the Urban division of John Laing Homes and now a management consultant for homebuilders and developers, has penned an excellent overview of the how the building industry got into its current mess and, more importantly, how to get out. And no, I'm not just saying that because he quoted me. From an article at Builder & Developer magazine:

This is the first time in decades that we are paying such a steep price for management that does not have the depth of experience to manage through a major market adjustment...

After more than a decade of soaring profits and over-staffed offices, industry managers are for the first time being forced to get back to basics, limit their resources and make painful and difficult decisions.

In addition to being forced to take a long hard look at the adequacy of their staff capability and organizational structure, individual managers also need to simultaneously juggle an increased number of operational functions within the organization. It is a trial-by-fire for those executives and managers who have never before been through this type of cycle...

The markets no longer forgive feasibility oversights, erroneous entitlement assumptions, costly design defects, schedule delays, or sloppy sales and marketing programs...

Companies can no longer afford to tolerate team members who fail to fully engage with the program. In order to thrive a company must first survive, and only a fully committed, competent, focused and disciplined team will prevail against the challenges we face.

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