What IS going on at Institute?

March 2016

David A. Bishton, FCSI, NCARB, CCS, CCCA, SCIP

FY16 has been a busy year for Institute leadership. President Lane Beougher and Executive Director Mark Dorsey have directed the Board into a detailed evaluation of our structure and goals, with the intent of improving both the Board’s and staff’s efficiency and to focus the Board on the health of the CSI “forest.” This includes good evaluation techniques and understanding of accountability. It has long been easy for CSI leaders to be distracted in the “trees” (even branches and twigs) of operations in an organization like CSI. Staff are likewise frequently diverted from primary responsibilities in the complex web of communications and directives they receive.

We met face-to-face in January and will again in March to flesh out the structure and future directions for CSI. While at times the process seems agonizingly slow, the big picture for this evaluation is that  FY16 is just the beginning of an effective structure for CSI’s long term future. More info soon at the Region Conference, I promise!

I’m glad to be on the ground floor of a new CSI and have enjoyed the Board experience so far. There are many, many good leaders on it. I look forward to seeing you in Salt Lake City.

Excerpts from Southwest Region Director Report to the Board, February 2016

  • Southwest Region membership: After declines of 7-16% in FY2015, membership in 7 of our 8 chapters has generally stabilized or increased slightly during FY2016 to date, with Denver and Phoenix Chapters showing the largest increases at approx. 4%. Overall Southwest Region membership, including non-affiliated, is down approx. 5% this fiscal year, which indicates our non-affiliated membership has suffered the majority of the loss. All chapters have ramped up efforts and activities both to retain members and to attract new members.
  • Southwest Region Conference: Salt Lake City Chapter is host for our region conference on March 31-April 2. This chapter has a reputation for great attendance and attraction of chapter events to the larger A/E/C community. The event website is found at www.csi-slc.org. Leadership training for incoming chapter officers will be held on Thursday, March 31. SLC Chapter will hold their annual education symposium and product show on Friday, April 1, along with social events, ice skating, and banquet. Closing leadership activities and the Region’s Annual Meeting will be held on Saturday, April 2.
  • Southwest Region leadership: President Paul Ricciuti, CSI of the Las Vegas Chapter has encouraged greater partnership of the chapters with local higher education institutions. To that end the Southwest Region was represented at the Associated Schools of Construction Region 6-7 Conference in Sparks, NV on February 8-11, 2016 along with members of the CSI West and Northwest Regions. It is hoped that contacts developed with universities, professors, and students at this large event can translate to increased chapter outreach and potential student affiliations.
  • Collaboration Opportunity:  CSI has opportunity to take advantage of its position at the nexus of construction industry coordination and quality control. While many specialty trade associations have expert product and installation knowledge within their scope of influence, CSI provides a broader and more vital service by coordinating the intersection of individual material and product expertise with overall construction quality. We need to emphasize the results and not duplicate or compete with the detail knowledge of these organizations.

To that end it is worthwhile to consider an associate membership category in CSI for members of allied construction product and contractor associations in order for CSI to enhance its role as the quality control organization and coordination resource of industry expertise. Reciprocating membership for CSI members in other associations should also occur. I believe this can be a groundbreaking benefit that can reduce competition for time, membership, and trade show participation for our industry members, and amplify the effect that each association has on the overall construction industry.

The effect could be significant on the presentation and offerings of CONSTRUCT, as well as the activities of our chapters in their local construction communities. It will enhance our relationship with engineering, project management, and contractor groups which are needed in CSI. It should also assist in eliminating the perceived competition with AIA, which has always been confusing both to our current and potential membership base.