BOOTS TO SUITS: ANDREW WINDISCH
ASSISTANT PROJECT MANAGER, ALBERICI. ST. LOUIS
FROM | Jefferson City, MO
THEN | Construction Management degree from MSU (May 2011)
NOW | Assistant Project Manager, Alberici Constructors Inc. in St. Louis, MO
ON HIS DAY-TO-DAY ROUTINE:
It depends on the project but there’s one constant—wake up early. I try to get to site before my field level supervision and work on whatever I wasn’t able to finish the previous day; this is typically the most productive part of my day. Then morning stretches with the crews and we break for toolbox talks. From there the ball is rolling and it’s usually a blur of meetings to attend and fires (figurative) to put out. That, to me, has always been the appeal of making a living this way. Monday you could be in a suit having lunch with an owner’s rep, Tuesday you’re in work boots working through an issue with a crew of ironworkers.
ON WHAT HE’S BEEN UP TO:
1. Long Harbour Processing Plant
– Long Harbour, Newfoundland Canada
2. K+S Legacy Potash Processing Plant
– Regina, Saskatchewan Canada
3. South Cobb Water Treatment Plant
– Atlanta, GA
4. Fargo WTP Membrane and Improvements
– Fargo, ND (Current)
ON LESSONS LEARNED:
Communication is key. This is a people industry, period. The best managers I’ve had may not understand the technical intricacies of what they’re building – most don’t have to. What they do possess are two key traits: how to communicate with individuals on their team and how to motivate those individuals to work as a team.
ON HOW TECHNOLOGY IS CHANGING THE INDUSTRY:
I’ve embraced all of this new and exciting technology available to the industry. I recently received the “2014 Alberici Award for Technical Innovation” for spearheading the company’s transition from Adobe to Bluebeam. As an industry, specifically the steel fab/erect sector that is slow to change, this can be quite difficult at times. It has taken a lot of patience and self-confidence but in the end I was able to demonstrate the organizational benefits of making the move to Bluebeam. We are currently looking at options for using Revit to maintain a “constructability model” with great initial feedback. This allows us to work within a 3D environment right up until the point of generating shop drawings on a branded Alberici title block – exciting stuff.
ON THE BEST ADVICE HE’S BEEN GIVEN THAT IS WORTHY OF PASSING ON:
I had a seasoned Ironworker superintendent once tell me, “Hey kid… first you get good, then you get fast.” That phrase has always stuck with me. Most of us in the industry have an ever-changing work environment and responsibilities. That’s what I like about it, but this can lead to frustration when thrown into a new situation. It’s always beneficial to think with the end game in sight, take your time up front, and establish procedures that allow for the team to work efficiently when implemented.