The army was my very first job – I signed up on 12 May 1995 in Brisbane, Australia while still at university and, excluding a brief hiatus for a few years, am still serving as a reservist. Understandably, the military has been a big influence on almost every aspect of my life. Now running Voyage Control, it is very easy to consider some of the parallels between military and civilian life, as well as some of the value that can be brought to bear as a result of my service in uniform. With that in mind, I thought I’d share a few of these below!
Commander’s Intent: When I went to Afghanistan with the Grenadier Guards back in 2009, our commanding officer told us the importance of delegating until you feel uncomfortable, and then delegate some more! The point of the lesson is that it is important to be able to trust your team with information and help them to make decisions for themselves – not only does it stop the need for wasteful micromanagement, but it helps to foster a learning environment where people can develop their leadership skills.
Morale: Morale is seen as a key element of combat power – how we work together in an army unit can mean the difference between life or death in a combat environment. Team performance and company culture is similarly important in the construction industry, and central to this is how we value and support those we work with. Construction is high risk too, so trust and team cohesion are really important!
Common Operating Picture: A common operating picture allows soldiers to get real time awareness of what’s happening around them – it’s a massive force multiplier in helping us to defeat our enemies. This is all about getting information to the right people at the right time. This is what the likes of Procore, Rhumbix and Voyage Control do; we help to digitize information related to construction sites to enable your teams work faster and smarter!