The Executive Minute Nick Francis, Construction Division Director

Q) What are the most critical issues facing the construction industry today?

A) In addition to Covid-19, drastic increases in lumber prices have resulted in established budgets being revisited, and higher-than-usual bidding on potential projects. The resultant increases may directly impact the viability of future work.

Q) How has Covid-19 changed how you build projects on a day-to-day basis?

A) Yes, daily sign-ins with temperature checks is just one implemented change. PPE now includes face masks.  And, GIS International has to stay up to date with federal and regional regulations related to the pandemic. In addition, due to Covid-19, communicating, implementing and policing best practices has been an unforeseen draw on company resources.

Q) What did you learn from your time working in Alaska?

A) While there are plenty of commonalities wherever a building is built, there are also significant regional differences. Viewing projects strictly through a macro lens is a recipe for failure. Taking the time to understand the unique challenges and opportunities of a given area can be the difference between a successful and unsuccessful project. As it relates to Alaska, remote work is much more common (there). Developing a system to efficiently use labor without jeopardizing the labor pool’s company commitment is a balancing act.


Q) What job skills are the most critical for success in the construction-management business?

A) The importance of different skill sets varies between each position. However, the one skill set every member of the construction management team should hone is multitasking.

Q) How would you describe your leadership style?

A) Servant leadership. As a leader you need to establish clear goals and put the team in a position to achieve said goals. I think listening to employees is the backbone of successful management.

The Executive Minute

Nick Francis, Construction Division Director