Lack of Quality, Honesty and Integrity

The Remainder of the Construction Complaint List

This is the fourth and final post in this series of building solutions on how to avoid construction project nightmares. Previously I wrote about the most common reasons construction projects fall apart. The next two posts dealt with the high cost of poor communication and what contractor communication should include. This week we’ll focus on the character portion of the list.


We’ve all have had experiences where things didn’t turn out like we had envisioned. This is true in everything, especially construction. Lower standards have become accepted and normal.


The low bar of expectation has become the construction industry standard.


I believe this to be attributed mainly to the focus on price. We should be conscious of what things cost, but when it is the determining factor above everything else, something will give. Most likely that will be quality and service.


The second factor is that we’ve become a fast-paced drive-through people. We expect everything to be instantaneous. The cost for this lightning fast speed is the same as price…quality and service.


Raising the bar is simple really.


It starts with an awareness of how low the bar is. It has been moving down in small increments for years. It’s happened so slowly that most don’t even realize how low it is. Raising it up will be a slow process as well.


The remainder of the list of reasons construction projects fall apart is as follows:

  • Poor quality
  • Cluttered and unorganized job site
  • Left hanging part way through an unfinished project
  • Lack of scheduling or poor time management

Quality, honesty and integrity cover this part of the list. These are character issues. They are about choosing to give as much importance to someone else’s needs as I do my own.


Quality – is the degree to which something is produced correctly. It can be somewhat subjective, but the higher the bar is raised, the higher the quality standard becomes.


Honesty – is moral character that is trustworthy, loyal, fair and sincere. It is absent of lying, cheating and stealing. Thomas Jefferson is attributed with having said, “Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.”


Integrity – is adherence to strong moral and ethical principles and values. One has integrity to the extent that they act according to the values, beliefs and principles they claim to hold.


Poor quality and a disorganized job site are part of the physical construction skill set. These things are skills that should be taught through apprenticeship and mentoring.


The same is true for lack of scheduling and poor time management. These things can be taught. Learning and applying these skills is more difficult, in that they are more directly connected to specific personality traits.


Leaving a job hanging partially finished, however is strictly a moral issue and unacceptable, short of some life altering emergency.


The entire issue of construction projects falling apart is unnecessary and unacceptable.


It doesn’t have to be this way!


You can choose what you want, it’s up to you. Learn more, expect more. Raise the bar as high as you can reach.

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