When you implement technology and process improvements that make your organization better, you are improving your company’s resilience. Automating to become more productive can elevate your company to the point where unexpected disruptions won’t cost you productivity in the confusion.

Building resilience can come in the form of improving information technology infrastructure: data storage, virtualization, remote work capabilities. Resilience can also be built through improving processes that increase worker productivity. These improvements enable your organization to weather the storms.

The AEC industry is primed for disruption. Compared to a year ago, more people are working remotely than ever before. Nine-to-five has a different look now; maybe it’s four-to-midnight. There’s more flexibility in work schedules as long as employees are meeting their deadlines and achieving their customers’ goals. There has been a shift toward a task-based mentality.  

The future trend that many people see materializing on the horizon is flexibility in the future workplace. There’s an increased expectation by employees of being able to work from anywhere (and live anywhere) they want to. Flexibility will be a key component in the AEC industry going forward.

Although it’s possible the “office” culture may suffer, it doesn’t necessarily have to. While many offices are not the gathering places they once were – places to bounce ideas off co-workers – there are ways to counteract that by being intentional about staying in touch through regular calls or remote video conversations. Focus on the things that matter.

During January’s Digital Agility Summit, the keynote, Dan Waldschmidt of Panzura, centered more on inspiration than technology, and inspiration can be something we run short of when storms hit. An important point was that you’ve got to have focused intensity. When you work, it’s important to focus on the task at hand. While balance is essential, there’s no substitute for hard work if you want to succeed, and that’s a lot easier if you’re passionate about your work. Another salient point about work: You need to ask yourself, “Is it awesome?” to determine if a creative idea is worth pursuing.

Considering work over the past year of disruption, ask yourself if you are truly being productive at what you’re doing. Intensity is more important than quantity of work. If you’re putting in 12 hours a day, has that all been productive time?

In order to leverage disruption, the historical way of envisioning the “office” needs to change. The old saying, “That’s the way we’ve always done things,” will not lead to improving processes. In times of disruption, companies need to transform. Change is inevitable, so set a goal to disrupt yourself before someone or something else disrupts you. For the industry to be sustainable, companies must be able to consistently adjust and withstand those disruptions. If you’re stagnant, you’re losing ground.

Yes, change can be challenging and intimidating. So, it’s helpful to involve people who are comfortable in chaos. Increasing productivity should be the whole point of digital transformation.

Bridging the Gap Podcast, episode 69 “Building Digital Resiliency”

Episode 69 of the Bridging the Gap was a “cross-podcast” with AEC Disruptors host Christopher Riddell and Applied Software Digital Transformation Team member Jason Schmidt. We recapped the Digital Agility Summit and talked about building resilience around the transformations taking place in the AEC industry. 


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