Mistake-Proofing Your Team

“One of the basic rules of the universe is that nothing is perfect. Perfection simply doesn’t exist … Without imperfection, neither you nor I would exist.”
– Stephen Hawking

All humans are prone to making mistakes, even engineers. But in a profession built on perfection, how do civil engineers handle making mistakes on the job?

In this episode of the “ASCE Interchange,” Michael Howell, president of Arrow Engineering, discusses how to create a failure-resistant team.

While perfection is crucial in civil engineering, it cannot be an expectation. “At the end of the day we’re humans. We have other things going on that limit our ability to create perfection,” said Howell. Professionals must instead take their mistakes and turn them into lessons.

Howell believes mistake-proofing your team comes down to three key points: empowering your people, placing individuals in the right role and encouraging a culture of quality control. Engineers can even look to the military for good examples of teamwork values. This all will lead to individual and team success.

To view all “Interchange” episodes, visit ASCE’s YouTube channel.

“ASCE Interchange” is brought to you by Contech Engineered Solutions, a leading provider of site solutions for the civil engineering industry. Contech’s portfolio includes bridges, drainage, erosion control, retaining wall, sanitary, stormwater and wastewater treatment products. For more info, visit www.ContechES.com or call 800-338-1122.

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