A recent episode from the fantastic ConExpo/Con-Agg Radio covers Lean Construction, a methodology that was adapted from Toyota's Lean manufacturing, and which has been around for decades. The real mystery is why it hasn't been adopted industry-wide yet.
Lean Construction emphasizes the importance of collaboration and communication at all stages of the project, from the project leadership team all the way down to the "Last Planner." By emphasizing transparency across the entire communication chain, Lean Construction promises to deliver optimal solutions to the problems that inevitably arise during a project.
The podcast is definitely worth a listen. Much like tech companies, construction projects are dotted with "information silos." Ownership, management, and each team of subcontractors each hold key knowledge that can help solve issues, but that information is "siloed" off from the other through cultural and even organizational barriers. This kind of dysfunction has serious cost implications for everyone involved, and the ConExpo/Con-Agg podcast gives some pointers for how to get started implementing Lean and improving project flow.
You can give it a listen here.
Have you ever been stuck in an information silo on a job site? Or in your field office? Or just wish people would tell you what they're thinking a little earlier, so that implementation isn't twice as expensive because you had to rush it? Let me know in the comments.