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Carolinas AGC Buildercast

Author: CarolinasAGC

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Podcasting for members of Carolinas AGC. Carolinas AGC members build Carolinas infratructure, public and private commercial facilities and service this vital industry.
19 Episodes
Series Guest Speaker: Dr. Joseph M. Burgett, PhD, Associate Professor at Clemson University; Teaches the 5 Week Drone Course for Contractors and Surveyors  BuilderCast Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital OperationsBuilderCast Series Co-Host: Bill Stricker, Director Utility Division & NCCER AdministrationDrones have been used commercially since 2016, when the FAA introduced Part 107 Federal Regulatory guidelines. Since then, the industry and use cases for drones in construction has grown significantly. Drones are far more than just a cool technology for our industry techies to play around with, they offer relatively low cost, and high yield, practical applications that accomplish tasks such as record keeping, marketing material, jobsite security. They additionally make it possible to keep our workforce out of high risk areas and can provide a company competitive advantages in producing models through photogrammetry and mapping.In this first episode of the series, we asked our friend Dr. Joe Burgett from Clemson University to give us information on the basics of why, how, when and how much to get started with Drones. Joe teaches a 5 Week Drone Course for Contractors and Surveyors and has a background as a licensed General Contractor.“Drones are a surprisingly simple tool for contractors to improve communication, provide a better product to their clients and increase the bottom line.” --Dr. Joe Burgett, Clemson UniversityWe enjoyed learning about the equipment, including types and costs, the steps to obtaining a license, training opportunities, the practical applications of drones as a flying camera for recording progression of work, providing internal marketing material and client quality control and transparency and even security of the jobsite. In the next episodes, we'll find out more about advanced uses including Photogrammetry, overlay of images and mapping and LIDAR. View all episodes of this series and others."Under Pressure" partial intro downloaded from iTunes.Music Licensed through AudioJungle.
For our finale episode of the Women in Construction series, we asked Carolinas AGC staff members to pick their favorite moments from our extraordinary guests interviewed during our “We Were Built for This” and “Diversity and Inclusion” series of  our Buildercast podcast.  In order of appearance:  - Pat Rodgers, Rodgers - We Were Built For This, Episode 3, Part I & II- Patrice Gilmore - Diversity & Inclusion, DPR Construction - Episode 3- Lasenta Lewis-Ellis, LLE Construction Group, LLC - Diversity & Inclusion, Episode 1 - Susie Lewis, Beam Construction - We Were Built For This, Episode 2- Nish Evans, Lennox and Grae Construction, Inc & Charlie Wilson, C. T. Wilson Construction Company, Inc. - We Were Built For This, Episode 4- Nora Spencer, Hope Renovations - We Were Built For This, Episode 1 Throughout these episodes, words like opportunity, creativity, hard work, passion, drive, tenacity, conviction and integrity are staples. You’ll also hear about receiving help from others in the community, appreciating some of the good luck that led to successful careers, and the importance of giving back and telling more young people about the vast opportunities in our industry. With leaders like this, our industry has a bright future.We sure hope you enjoy this mash up of “best of” moments much as we did!View all episodes of this series and others."Under Pressure" partial intro downloaded from iTunes.Music Licensed through AudioJungle.
Guest Speaker: Pat Rodgers, RodgersBuilderCast Series Host: Betsy Bailey, NC Government Relations & Building Div. DirectorBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital Operations“The key is that I never underestimated myself. I knew I had a lot to learn, was anxious to learn as much as I could and I just didn’t dwell on it. You know, If you dwell on possibly being underestimated, you won’t have enough energy to do what you need to do to be successful.” “One of my favorite quotes is from Nelson Mandela. “A winner is a dreamer who never gives up”. So never give up if your doing something your are passionate about.” -- Pat Rodgers, Rodgers In Part 2 of this episode, Pat Rodgers discusses how proud she feels being a part of such important projects in our communities. She also focuses on the importance of giving back, her experiences and opportunities available to women in the industry. Most importantly, we discussed having a passion for this industry and running your own business in general. Having passion and never giving up are keys to success.  We want to thank Pat for her time, her willingness to share her story, her thoughtful advice and outlook, and certainly her dedication and generosity to this industry.View all episodes of this series and others. Music Licensed through AudioJungle.
Guest Speaker: Pat Rodgers, RodgersBuilderCast Series Host: Betsy Bailey, NC Government Relations & Building Div. DirectorBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital Operations"Running a business is not for the faint of heart. And you do have to have that passion for it you have to really care about it. Years ago I read a book by Paul Hawkin (Smith & Hawkin) wrote...and one of the things I remember reading that book... is that if the only reason you go into business is to make money, then you probably won't"."...So I think you have to care passionately about what you do and you have to give back. It's really important to all of us at Rodgers to give back whether our time, talents or financial support, that we give back to our industry and our communities where our people live and work." --Pat Rodgers, RodgersPat Rodgers never thought she would land in the construction industry. She found a 2-day part time commitment when she moved to Charlotte and needed a job. That job was with Rodgers Builders. She was asked to stay on and help with some other positions and she decided she would. Over the years, she was offered, and took advantage of every opportunity to grow and learn the business.Pat discusses the wide open opportunities our industry offers to anyone willing to work hard, and learn the business. She also identifies technology as one reason our industry can and is attracting more young people. She closes part 1 of this 2 part episode by talking about how important it is for business to give back to the community. Rodgers really has a passion for building beautiful facilities. In fact, their tagline is "Building is our Passion." In this interview, you learn that they are just as passionate about giving back and they show it.View all episodes of this series and others.  Music Licensed through AudioJungle.
Guest Speaker: Susie Lewis, Beam ConstructionBuilderCast Series Host: Betsy Bailey, NC Government Relations & Building Div. DirectorBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital Operations"You know, one of the things that I still get charged up about and love about construction is that there is a great sense of pride in driving down the road and being able to point to a building that you were a part of building -whether I personally had any involvement or not, but that Beam Construction built that."--Susie Lewis, President of Beam Construction, Cherryville, NCSusie Lewis personifies a life in construction. Her Dad, Tom Brown, owned Beam Construction and there were 6 children in the family. In their house, there was no discrimination - boys and girls all helped with projects around the house. They also all gained much exposure to construction during family vacation stops to check on jobsites. Susie interest in how things were built, led her to pursue an engineering degree and first job out of college before taking over operations at Beam Construction in 1994. Susie has continued to build on her success through education and experience. We talked with her about being in the industry and a multi-generational family business. We also get her outlook on the vast opportunities for women in construction, and thoughts about the natural instincts and talents women have that are so well suited for this industry.View all episodes of this series and others. Music Licensed through AudioJungle.
Guest Speaker: Nora Spencer, Hope RenovationsBuilderCast Series Host: Tammy Ford, Director of Build Your Career InitiativeBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital Operations “Women are good at details, they are tenacious, they don’t give up. They are curious learners and love to learn…Women show up. We have a different way of looking at work a lot of times and I think that is really appreciated and needed in the industry.”"...You’re coming into an industry where there is not a cultural expectation that women are not worth as much, so as women are coming into the industry, they are getting paid as much as their male counterparts and that is specific to construction industry. You don’t find that in any other industry.”--Nora Spencer, Hope Renovations on the qualities women possess that bring so much value to this industry and the unique earning potential specific to construction.While working in HR at Lowe’s, Nora was exposed to and became interested in construction trades and began doing some of her own remodeling jobs on her own. During that time, she noticed (to her dismay) that there were not many women working in the field. After a change in career goals and some training and experience in social work, she decided she wanted to bring about social change in the lives of women through construction trade training. She knew that the trades offer opportunities to lift people out of poverty and provide sustainable, rewarding careers and in 2020 she founded Hope Renovations.In this episode she helps us dig into the history of women in construction, the traits and characteristics inherent in women that lend so much value to the industry and what the industry has to offer women and has offered women throughout the first year of the Hope Renovations program.View all episodes of this series and others. Music Licensed through AudioJungle.
Guest Speaker: Brynn Huneke, Director, Diversity & Inclusion, Member EngagementBuilderCast Series Host: Betsy Bailey, Director of Government Relations, NCBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital OperationsHow does someone from a town of 750 people in Minnesota end up working on a Diversity & Inclusion Initiative in Washington DC for a National Construction Trade Association?  Brynn Huneke moved to DC to pursue a career in politics and began working at AGC in the Government Affairs department. Then, she had an experience on the Metro. Listen to her story, and hear an honest reflection on how she started to question her own biases, educate herself, and then choose a career path to do something about it. As Brynn was getting certified in the field of Diversity & Inclusion Management, AGC of America was developing it’s Diversity & Inclusion program and she was a perfect fit for the role. That was 4 years ago and this past March, AGC of America launched it’s Culture of CARE campaign. This initiative began at the chapter level with AGC of Washington. AGC of America was already doing some work on Diversity & Inclusion and teamed up with the Washington State Chapter to create a national campaign. The Culture of CARE campaign asks construction companies to take a pledge to build diverse and inclusive workplaces. Making our workplaces more welcoming and inclusive is good business ethics, good for sustainability and profitability, but additionally attracts talent when workforce shortages demand we bring new individuals into our industry.   Working through these topics and efforts can be difficult and quite different for companies depending on size and resources available. Brynn notes that AGC of America knows this campaign cannot be stagnant and continues to add tools and training to the Culture of CARE website as an ongoing effort.“We felt like Culture of CARE had a really unique position to be able to talk about that mental and emotional well-being that comes with caring, truly caring about your employees in the middle of a pandemic and how you support them as individuals whose lives have been up-ended.”  --Brynn Huneke on how Culture of CARE can help support individuals and companies dealing with new realities.Find out more and consider taking the pledge about the Culture of CARE after listening to this podcast by going to 
Guest Speaker: Edison Cassels, President & CEO, Edison Foard and Incoming Chair of the City Business Inclusion Advisory Committee (CBIAC)BuilderCast Series Host: Betsy Bailey, Director of Government Relations, NCBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital Operations“These are truly unprecedented times… My approach is always just to address something head on. There’s very few conversations I am not willing to have very directly and openly.  It’s important that we truly be considerate and consider how co-workers, associates, trade partners, our families are all digesting what’s happening in our world. It’s an uncertain and changing place which can be a little scary, but can also be good.”-Edison CasselsIn this week’s Buildercast, Betsy talks with Edison about communicating to create a more inclusive team environment and how he uncovered blind spots that may not otherwise have been discovered without the need for changes created by COVID-19. New communication strategies that involve all employees at every level have created a feeling of a level playing field, consistency and transparency. Edison is also spending more time really thinking about who is receiving the message and then how best to communicate it. As a passionate advocate and leader in the community and incoming chair of the City Business Inclusion Advisory Committee, Edison is aware of the impact of COVID-19 on our Minority Businesses. Business have reported struggling during this crisis due to a slow-down of work, lack of financial support and access to assistance. He discusses possible avenues of support during crisis such as short term loans, financial support and access, government entities, private businesses and organizations could act as advocates with the process of getting through crisis. Additionally, continuing education is critical and could be funded by public-private partnerships. And finally, Edison brings such honesty and thoughtfulness to the conversation about diversity and inclusion as a strategic cornerstone of their business. They are working very hard on this goal and strongly believe that leaders of organizations must set the tone through words and actions and really believe in the mission and beneficial outcomes. As the CEO of Edison Foard, he shares how he has promoted these efforts within his company and how we might all affect real change through our own commitments to these efforts of succeeding together.
Guest Speaker: Patrice Gilmore, National Supplier Diversity Lead for DPR Construction and President of United Minority Contractors of North CarolinaBuilderCast Series Host: Betsy Bailey, Director of Government Relations, NCBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital OperationsBetsy talks to Patrice about her early fascination with all things "building" as a young girl, her parents confusion (and some concern) with her interest in this field, and discovering the Construction Management education path while attending North Carolina A & T University.   Patrice discusses what connections and relationships can do to grow and strengthen minority-owned businesses. She talks about the importance of establishing those relationships now to prepare businesses to respond to crisis like COVID-19 in the future.   Finally, we asked her advice on what our organizations can do to be a positive influence on diversity and inclusion in the industry. She discusses the opportunities for our organizations and member companies to work together in mentoring relationships- strengthening their firms, as well as the industry.  Patrice on "the why" to implement diversity and inclusion in your firm- "Do it because you really want to do it for the right reasons, that you want to make investments in people, and help them be better and do better. That's a good reason why." 
Guest Speaker: Johnny Ortiz, Regional Vendor Diversity Manager, Skanska USABuilderCast Series Host: Betsy Bailey, Director of Government Relations, NCBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital OperationsJohnny's path to construction included early hands-on experience in the industry, and parents that encouraged education as well as construction as a career. Their advice to him was that a being skilled in a trade provides security, a sense of honor and also great earning potential. After struggling as a young man, Johnny pursued and graduated with his GED, went to trade school and earned HVAC-R certification. He then gained more experience working with a small family-owned business and was a part of the firm for 10 years. Working with that family and their firm influenced Johnny and is something that informs and drives him while he works on behalf of small, women & minority firms working on Skanska projects.In this podcast, we dive into the challenges faced by our Hispanic workforce and staying safe and healthy during COVID-19. With the pandemic disproportionately affecting this community, how can companies create a space that is inclusive and free from fear so that we can better listen, AND get safety messages out more effectively? Additionally, How can we partner with community groups where trust is already established to help protect these communities?Finally, we discuss the work that is ongoing to create a more diverse and sustainable industry. Programs to get the message about construction careers to our youth are more important now than ever and we must continue working and find new ways to get to parents and teachers to promoting construction the way that Johnny's parents did for him.
Guest Speaker: Lasenta Lewis-Ellis, GC, CM, CQM-C, MAHRD, is the President/CEO of LLE Construction Group, LLC.BuilderCast Series Host: Betsy Bailey, Director of Government Relations, NCBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital OperationsCAGC is pleased to present our latest series of Buildercast. Inspired by our Member Talk panelists from June 5th, we asked each individual to join us separately to continue this important conversation around how we can work to ensure inclusive workplaces and improve communications and safety strategies- especially during COVID-19.Lasenta Lewis-Ellis, President/CEO of LLE Construction Group opened the series with a fantastic interview - and what a pleasure to speak with her again to get more insight from someone that pushed herself to pursue this career and gives back regularly to our industry.Listen now to hear Lasenta talk more about what diversity and inclusion really means, how to reach out to disproportionately affected minority communities to better communicate safety messages, and how she is mentoring the new generation of women to pursue careers in construction.
Guest Speaker: Dr. Rebecca Battle-Bryant, Ph.D., SHRM-CPPresident and Owner, Battle Plan Consulting, LLCInterviewed by: Tammy Ford, Director, Carolinas AGC Foundation's Build Your Career Workforce Development ProgramPrior to the outbreak of COVID-19, the construction industry was already in the midst of a workforce shortage that presented challenges to employers in their attempts to recruit and hire new workers. Due to the rapid emergence of the coronavirus and the resultant disruptions to our personal and professional routines, these existing challenges have undeniably been exacerbated.This global health crisis has forced many employers to not only restructure their entire work flow process and elevate their safety practices, but it has also significantly impeded their normal recruitment, interviewing and hiring efforts. This week’s Carolinas AGC BuilderCast series is led by Dr. Rebecca Battle-Bryant, President and Owner of Battle Plan Consulting, LLC, and contains a variety of useful human resource tips that employers can utilize while revamping their existing HR, recruiting and hiring strategies as they go virtual in response to COVID-19.
Guest Speakers: Jacob Garmon, Sales, Suppliers & Sponsorships & Chelsea Andujar, Director of Meetings & Events.Interviewed by: Sharon Walters, Director Digital Strategy & OperationsPrevious BuilderCasts have focused primarily on how to navigate the challenges of COVID-19, sustain our business and keep workers safe. Several episodes have touched on the human impact our business decisions make on individuals, but today's episode focuses on stories from individuals dealing with complicated realities brought upon us by the COVID-19 pandemic. Every individual has different circumstances surrounding them now at home with their loved ones, and because we all work so closely with each other we take notice of those difficulties and it  becomes personal. Jacob Garmon works with our Supplier members and is a critical events team member. Chelsea Andujar is CAGC's Director of Meetings and Events. We are grateful to them both for sharing their stories, which many can relate to, for the podcast.
Guest Speaker: Sonya Conner, VP, RN, BSN, CPHRM, McGriff Insurance ServicesInterviewed by: Bill Stricker, Director, Utility Division & NCCER Administration, Carolinas AGCContractors are facing daily questions and are concerned about how best to handle new working conditions and keep their workforce and the public safe during COVID-19. Questions like, what about the use of face masks? How best to conduct and should we conduct screenings? What if someone shows symptoms or tests positive? This week, Buildercast was pleased to have Sonya Conner, VP, RN, BSN, CPHRM discuss and answer some of these health and safety questions. Hear answers to these and other safety and health questions in this short 20 minute interview.As a graduate of Gardner-Webb University, Sonya earned her bachelor’s degree in Nursing. She holds a designation as a Certified Professional in Healthcare Risk Management as well. She currently works with McGriff Insurance Services as a risk control consultant and prior to joining McGriff she held various leadership roles in healthcare and has more than 25 years of experience in healthcare risk management. We hope this podcast helps you implement and maintain best practices for a healthy and safe jobsite.
Guest Speaker: Charlie Wilson, President & CEO at C.T. Wilson Construction CompanyInterviewed by: Betsy Bailey, NC Government Relations & Building DivisionWith the COVID-19 pandemic, everything has changed in business as well as our personal lives. We are living in a new reality of school closings and stay at home orders and right now, in NC anyway, only essential businesses are allowed to continue. Although construction has been deemed essential, it certainly doesn’t mean business as usual. So much has been disrupted with in-office and field operations in such a short amount of time, and this has been further compounded by many, daily unknowns. Managing and adapting to this ever-changing business environment, and the human impact it has on our employees and partnerships is difficult and requires careful, thoughtful decision-making.Hear Charlie Wilson, President & CEO of C.T. Wilson Construction Company, walk through how they have navigated the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on their projects and business, and adapted to respond to the changes while keeping the public and their employees as top priority.
Guest Speaker: Dawn Klug, Employee Assistance Network, Asheville, NCInterviewed by: Betsy Bailey, NC Government Relations & Building DivisionOur employees are are not only our most valuable asset in business, they are also family. Caring for our workforce means we are diligent and adamant about following CDC physical guidelines, but also about being observant and responsive to changing behaviors, stress and anxiety levels. We must respond to these challenges in a helpful and effective way for the individuals we work with and love and for the health of our business and industry. 
Guest Speaker: Tamera Edwards, Vice President, Human Resources, MB Haynes Corporation & Chair of the Human Resources CommitteeInterviewed by: Betsy Bailey, NC Government Relations & Building Director & Human Resources Committee CAGC LiaisonGood communication is critical for any business and more so during crisis events. The Coronavirus pandemic, and it's response is certainly an unprecedented event to manage. Having an effective communication plan and executing it with empathy and consistency is one of the most helpful tools you can employ to keep your business moving forward and to keep your employees happy and safe.
Guest Speaker: Nish Evans, President & CEO Lennox and Grae Construction, Inc.Guest Speaker: Charlie Wilson, President C. T.  Wilson Construction Company, Inc.BuilderCast Host: Betsy Bailey, NC Government Relations & Building Div. DirectorBuilderCast Co-Host and Producer: Sharon Walters, Director of Digital OperationsNish Evans had spent 12 years in corporate finance roles when  she decided she wanted to build a legacy for herself. After some self-reflection and research, she found the construction industry and she went after a career. She tells us about that journey, the construction industry advisors that were critical to her success, and what we can do now to attract more women into the industry. "Something I often share with youth as well is that it's not just what we tend to think of in terms of laboring or some of those different roles... There's project management and estimating. This is all about if you can solve problems and you are attracted to that - this is one of the best industries to be in."-- Nish Evans, Lennox and Grae Construction, Inc._________________________________________________________________________________Charlie Wilson got a call about someone that eagerly wanted to get into the industry. He was blown away by her determination and drive to get started. C. T. Wilson believes that bringing in  smart people is beneficial for the whole industry and wanted to be a part of that journey. Charlie tells us what he learned while Nish was with the team and how we can continue to encourage those with vision to pursue a career in construction. "We need more people of all types in this industry....Broaden your horizons and look beyond just the degree and experience and really look at the person. Is this person driven and care about what they want to do? In the end I think somebody who wants to work hard to learn is more valuable then someone who maybe halfway learned it before and thinks they are done."-- Charlie Wilson, C. T. Wilson Construction Company, Inc.View all episodes of this series and others.Music Licensed through AudioJungle.
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