In Football as In Construction

Sports are often used as a metaphor for life.
In Football as In Construction

Construction is a big part of my life so I’m going to tell you about what I’ve learned from football coaching legend Sir Alex Ferguson.

Today’s video is about Squeaky Bum Time and this alone should intrigue you enough to watch the video by clicking here or continuing with this quick read.

“Squeaky Bum Time”… What is it?

EPL manager Sir Alex Ferguson came up with the term.

(You’ll know Sir Alex as being the manager of Manchester United for +20 years.)

I love the term Squeaky Bum Time…

Sir Alex uses it to describe the most important stage of a football game.

In the final quarter, there’s invariably a stage where the intensity of the game goes to a fever pitch. Excuse the pun.

This is the moment when the crowd starts shifting in their plastic seats. The clock counts down. More shifting. More squeaky bums.

This idea goes beyond football.

Squeaky bum time is taking control of the moments that matter most.

This is the time when everyone has to bring their game up to the ante.

Great story, but how do we relate this to construction?

Well, Charlie Munger, Warren Buffett’s right-hand man says the best way to solve a problem is to flip it around.

This is because humans are easy at finding problems, but when it comes to solving them this is where we struggle.

So for example… How can we make sure we lose the most money, as quickly as possible in construction?

By working out what not to do, we can learn what to do.

Typically a construction project can be broken down into quarters… and here’s what not to do in each quarter.

  • Q1- sign a contract straight up without reading or engaging with the clauses. Don’t submit any notices. You just take the view that you’re going to do a great job.
  • Q2- one or two challenges emerge but you shrug them off.
  • Q3- real problems emerge because inevitably things don’t go exactly to plan– so only now do you start submitting paperwork. This about turn in your behavior winds the client up. They retaliate by rejecting claims.
  • Q4- things go belly up. They accuse you of being delayed. In the short story you lose a lot of money on the project.

The strategy to ramp up scrutiny over contractual compliance in Q4 is a well-oiled tactic. What this means is that subcontractors often get nailed for contractual non-compliance.

So to succeed on a project here’s how to flip it around.

  • Negotiate hard on your contract
  • Remember that the RETURNS ARE IN THE TERMS
  • Start contractual from the get-go
  • If you start contractual you’ll protect yourself and look more professional
  • Prepare yourself for squeaky bum time– get your notices in (let them know about delays and change of scope), and submit your variations.

The idea is that you need to build your story from the beginning of any project so that during the Squeaky Bum Time of Q4 you don’t fall at the last hurdle.

Paperwork is everything.

Luckily we are here to help those of you who don’t like paperwork and contracts.

We want you to be the MOST SUCCESSFUL you can possibly be. That’s why we put together content with tips and advice that is tried and tested.

For more contractual advice, Quantum Contract Solutions is here to guide and assist you through everything contract related. Let’s reduce risk in your contracts and save time and money, just click this link to get our FREE case study to show you how clients just like you are doing it.

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