by Elton Donald, Senior Project Consultant
When you're trying to figure out who you want to work with, don't put so much focus on what the price is.
Of course, it's going to come down to price. Of course, you have to get value for what you're getting. You have to have an understanding of your own budget and how that relates to what we're doing.
But what I'm talking about is in the very beginning. What you want to do is you want to interview people for fit.
Because when you're starting the design-build process, it's such a long road with permits. You want to be working with someone that you can work with, in the good times on that first meeting where everyone's being on the best behaviour, but also in that in the tougher moments that come when you're dealing with a challenge from the city. Or you've gone through the city and you're dealing with a challenge on site. Something doesn't go right, one of the sub-trades has a failing. And here in the real world, we have to deal with that. And so, really, you want to get a good fit with people.
You want to concentrate on how can I create a relationship that we can look to have that will serve both parties well. And you're not necessarily going to find that if you're solely focused on someone who's going to tell you the lowest number because they think you want to hear that. I mean it's not always about numbers. Maybe someone's telling you that they can start your process in one week when, you know, three other people are telling you it's going to be three months. I mean, everyone wants what they want, right?
But I think people are better served by working with someone who will put the focus on what's real. What are the particulars? What are the options, and how much do those options cost?
You know, for me personally, I don't feel like my job is to sell something to anyone even though I have a sales manager in my title.
I feel like my job is to arm people with correct information so they can sell themselves on what's right for them. And I simply have to give them good decision-making actionable intel.