Ventura Consulting Group (VCG) is a global Partnering firm dedicated to successfully facilitating problem construction projects and building World Class project teams. We accomplish this through a process of collaborative teamwork which is implemented to achieve measurable results.

Partnering Tips – Change Your Actions Not Your Team

By Jim Eisenhart One of the biggest excuses people make about fixing problem projects is that “So and So won’t/can’t change. There is no point in even trying to change them, so we must remove them, cope with them, complain about them or, more typically, use them as an excuse for lack of success on our project.” Equally prevalent is the assumption that a particular company or organization will never […]

And the Award Goes To…

We are proud to report the following VCG-Partnered projects recently won industry awards with project teams recognized for their excellence in Partnering, innovation, safety, quality, and more. We commend them all for their dedication to Partnering and achieving world class project team status. Please join us in congratulating these award-winning teams: Calaveras Dam Replacement Project Award: 2019 San Francisco Collaborative Partnering Award Owner: San Francisco Public Utilities Commission Construction Management: […]

Four VCG Partnered Projects Take Home ENR California Best Project Awards

Each year, Engineering News-Record (ENR) selects the best recently completed projects in each region from those submitted by project team members for its Regional Best Project Awards. Entries are chosen by a group of A/E/C industry judges based on criteria related to overcoming challenges and teamwork, safety, innovation, contribution to the industry/community, construction quality/craftsmanship and function and aesthetic quality of design. A process of collaborative teamwork to achieve measurable results […]

Calaveras Dam Wins Sapphire-Level IPI Award

Each year, the International Partnering Institute (IPI) recognizes projects and individuals best exemplifying the principals of Partnering and promoting the organizations mission—to transform the construction industry to achieve exceptional results through a culture of collaboration. Ventura Consulting Group and its clients are proud to be among the recipients of various IPI awards over the years. Celebrating its 10-year anniversary, IPI’s Collaboration 2019 Conference, Expo and Awards held this past May […]

Six Lessons Learned for P3 Project Success

Spoiler Alert: Using Partnering to improve communication is one of them Partnering is playing a significant role in aligning the many project team members involved in the $250 million Boynton Beach Town Square mixed-use project currently underway in Boynton Beach, Florida. The project is being developed using a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt P3 (public-private partnership) financing approach to build out the public portion of the 20-acre site, including a city hall/library, police […]

Achieving Success on a Challenged Project (Part 2)

By Jim Eisenhart Our last challenged project blog post discussed the definition of construction project success on a challenged project, why all-star teams fail and the key to fixing problem construction projects lies in developing a world class team. In this follow-up post, we will provide a challenged project example and the solution for achieving success. Dealing with a Design Submittal by Not Just Fixing the Problem Let’s first look […]

Achieving Success on a Challenged Project (Part 1)

By Jim Eisenhart What is Construction Project Success on a Challenged Project? Construction project success is enabling your project team to be the best they can be as a team on the balance of their project as measured by criteria (goals) that the team creates and hold themselves accountable to.  They are no longer playing “not to lose” as individual stakeholders, but rather are committed to playing to win as […]

VCG’s Paul Crotty Answers 5Ws of Partnering at IPI Collaboration 2019

Ever wonder if delivery method, construction type, project size or industry determine the effectiveness of a Partnering process?  If you have, you won’t want to miss Paul Crotty’s presentation at the International Partnering Institute Collaboration 2019 Conference, Expo and Awards in Burlingame, California. Read on for more details. Presentation: Partnering with Any Construction Type of Delivery Method Date: Thursday, May 16 Time: 9:15 – 10:15 am Place: Hilton San Francisco […]

Just Keep Clapping, Clapping, Clapping

San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge East Span Marine Foundations Removal Project Team Does It Again! Congratulations to the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge East Span Marine Foundations Removal Project Phase 2 project team on winning the Associated General Contractors (AGC) of America’s 2019 JLT Build America Award in the Marvin M. Black Partnering Excellence category. Facilitated by Ventura Consulting Group President Jim Eisenhart, the bridge project was the only entry in the […]

SouthEast Connector Phase II

SouthEast Connector Phase II Project Team Earns Build America Award Congratulations to the Washoe County SouthEast Connector Phase II project team for earning an Associated General Contractors (AGC) of America 2019 JLT Build America Merit Award in the Highway & Transportation New category. Considered one of the most prestigious construction awards in the nation, the Build America Awards honor AGC members who build the nation’s most impressive construction projects ranging […]

San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge (SFOBB) Foundation Removal Phase 2

“To deliver a project 12-months early and generate a saving of $20 million is truly a world class project and a testament to the foresight and collaborative approach involved.” – Judging Panel, Collaboration in Demolition Awards San Francisco to Oakland Bay Bridge Team Does It Again Completed one year early and nearly $20 million under Caltrans’ budget, the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge (SFOBB) Foundation Removal Phase 2 project recently won three […]

San Francisco Collaborative Partnering Program Recognizes Two VCG Project Teams

The San Francisco Collaborative Partnering (SFCP) consortium honored teams on two Ventura Consulting Group (VCG) facilitated projects—Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital Hybrid MRI/IR and Potrero Avenue Roadway Improvement—during its inaugural Partnering Awards Ceremony in September 2018. Both projects were facilitated by Neal Flesner of VCG. Founded by the San Francisco Collaborative Partnering Steering Committee, the SFCP Awards Program recognizes teams that implement best practices and foster collaborative relationships on City […]

Calaveras Dam Replacement Project Reaches Full Height

“This is a project that all of its stakeholders will look back on for the rest of their careers as the gold standard in collaboration and overcoming monumental challenges, together.” – Paul Crotty, Ventura Consulting Group The $823 million Calaveras Dam Replacement Project in the mountains east of San Francisco Bay reached its full height in September 2018 and is nearly ready to begin impounding water. The project milestone was […]

Caltrans Acknowledges Best Partnered Projects

Three world class heavy/highway project teams facilitated by Ventura Consulting Group were honored at the 2018 Caltrans (California Department of Transportation) Excellence in Partnering Awards ceremony in June. In its 18th year, the Caltrans Partnering Awards recognize Caltrans project teams for utilizing Partnering and its best practices to facilitate successful project implementation. Read on to learn why the following VCG-facilitated projects were among those honored. Highway 101/Petaluma River Bridge Best […]

Change Your Team Culture—Change Your Project’s Outcome

By Neal Flesner and Jim Eisenhart When it comes to World Class™ construction partnering, it’s important to focus on strategic culture change versus tactical or process change. Read on to learn why in this excerpt from VCG President Jim Eisenhart’s success guide on Turning the Problem Construction Project into Extraordinary Success. Changing Behaviors Versus Changing Culture There is a huge difference between just tweaking individual behaviors and truly changing a […]

International Partnering Institute Honors Collaborative Project Teams

Three Ventura Consulting Group facilitated projects were among the recipients honored at the International Partnering Institute’s (IPI) 2018 Partnered Project of the Year (PPY) Collaboration 2018 Award Ceremony.  VCG Partnering Facilitator Paul Crotty attended the annual event along with other design and construction professionals from across the country. Held in San Francisco this past May, The IPI John L. Martin Partnered Project of the Year Awards honor individuals and organizations […]

Set Team Goals Regardless of Current Circumstances

Setting common team goals is important for all construction projects, yet the stakeholders on a challenging/problem project often overlook this critical tactic. To empower our clients to become a world class team and achieve project success, we tell them to set common team goals regardless of how uncertain current circumstances appear. When a project is in a reactive or fire-fighting mode, individuals tend to overlook the value of setting measurable […]

Building Healthy Relationships and Communities

$1.5 billion hospital for Sutter Health California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco is ahead of schedule, allowing for an early opening in 2019 Despite unique building challenges, the project’s enormity and multiple stakeholders, the $1.5 billion hospital for Sutter Health-California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC) at Van Ness and Geary in San Francisco is on schedule for an early completion. Not only that, the relationships built among the project team […]

Los Angeles Federal Courthouse Named ENR Best of the Best

Winning projects represent the pinnacle of project achievement across the U.S. Congratulations to the U.S. Courthouse – Los Angeles project team on winning yet another industry award! Most recently the recipient of ENR’s Best of the Best Award in the government/public building project category, this World Class™ project team has garnered more than a dozen industry awards while the courthouse project was underway and after its completion in 2016. These […]

Mountains of Risk Mitigated at Calaveras Dam Replacement Project

The Calavaras Dam Replacement project in the mountains east of San Francisco Bay has been plagued by a multitude of challenges; the most daunting of which were site conditions laid down by Mother Nature thousands of years ago. A major nearby fault, naturally occurring asbestos and ancient landslides uncovered while the project was already underway were just some of the obstacles faced by the project team. Although various unforeseen conditions […]

Three VCG Facilitated Projects Win DBIA Awards

Three projects that implemented partnering programs facilitated by Ventura Consulting Group earned 2017 National Design-Build Project/Team Awards from the Design-Build Institute of America. The awards showcase design-build best practices and celebrate the achievements of owners and design-build teams in ten categories across the spectrum of horizontal and vertical construction. Award recipients were honored at the DBIA National Conference and Expo on November 9, 2017 in Philadelphia, PA. Congratulations to the following award-winning project teams: Jordan […]

Tropicana/Las Vegas Boulevard Pedestrian Bridge Replacement Project Nears Completion

Construction is nearing completion on the $30 million Tropicana Pedestrian Bridge and Escalator Replacement Project in Las Vegas, Nevada. Ahead of schedule and on budget, the team has successfully implemented partnering under the guidance of VCG Master-Level Partnering Facilitator Neal Flesner to function as a World Class™ team. Serving roughly 130,000 pedestrians a day on the busy Las Vegas Strip, this highly-visible transportation project includes the replacement of 16 existing […]

Elysian Viaduct Bridge Project Earns a Perfect 10

In 2015, the California Transportation Commission (CTC) allocated $174.8 million to 85 transportation projects for the purpose of repairing aging roads and bridges, alleviating traffic delays and supporting job growth statewide. “Preserving, rebuilding and expanding the state’s transportation infrastructure is key to improving the state’s mobility for decades to come,” said Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty in a 2015 Caltrans news release. “Not only is it critical to California’s economy, but […]

Seeing is Believing

Seeing is Believing. How partnering done right is producing partnering advocates one project at a time Many of our clients become life-long advocates of partnering after experiencing how powerful it can be when implemented correctly on their most challenging projects. Such was the case for Jim Pappas, Vice President of Hensel Phelps, Northern California and new Vice President of the International Partnering Institute (IPI) Board of Directors. After winning a […]

Resolving Issues Peacefully and Effectively is a Team Effort

By Neal Flesner October 19 is Conflict Resolution Day, an annual event created by the Association for Conflict Resolution (ACR). The purpose of this global event is to create an awareness of peaceful methods for conflict resolution that can be used within workplaces, schools, families, the legal system and other areas of life. Throughout my experience as a partnering facilitator, I’ve run into various teams with conflicts on construction projects, […]

A Healthy Teaming Effort Brings VA Butler Health Care Center to Life

Thanks to a collaborative team effort, the new VA Butler Health Care Center in Butler, Pennsylvania will improve and enhance the quality of care for military veterans and their families in the region earlier than anticipated. Built to replace a smaller, aging health care facility located 1.4 miles away, the project was accepted by the VA seven months ahead of schedule on May 26, 2017, and is set to open […]

A Senior Manager’s Role in Issue Resolution

By Neal Flesner with excerpts from Jim Eisenhart During our partnering workshops, we stress the importance of owning project success as a team with no excuses. Part of truly owning the game as a team is managing issues at the lowest level possible, then escalating them to senior or executive management only when necessary. As VCG President Jim Eisenhart discusses in his book, Raising the Bar on Construction Project Teamwork, […]

How to Deliver Bad News

By Neal Flesner Communication in general is a daunting undertaking on construction projects involving various companies and team members with different personalities. When problems arise and you are tasked with delivering bad news to a project owner, communicating this sensitive information becomes even more challenging. I was recently interviewed for a United Rentals’ blog post about 3 Ways General Contractors Can Improve Communication with Owners. During the interview, I expressed […]

Partnering Innovations: Derivative Partnering on the Exposition Phase II Light Rail Project

By: Candice Evenson, Operations Coordinator, IPI Jim Eisenhart, President of Ventura Consulting Group and author of “Raising the Bar on Construction Project Teamwork” specializes in a method for Partnering that simplifies large, complex projects such as airports, railways, and hospitals. He calls it “Derivative Partnering.” Derivative Partnering involves shorter and generally smaller sessions where key players meet to discuss specific goals and concerns. The full team comes together for a […]

International Partnering Institute Honors 2017 IPI Award Winners

The International Partnering Institute (IPI) recognized the 2017 Partnered Project of the Year (PPY) Award winners this past May during IPI’s Collaboration 2017 Conference and Award Ceremony at the Hilton San Francisco Airport Bayfront in Burlingame, Calif. VCG Partnering Facilitator Neal Flesner attended the annual event along with other design and construction professionals. As reported by the IPI, the awards ceremony recognized the most collaborative organizations and project teams of […]

Ditch Email to Improve Communication

By Neal Flesner and Jim Eisenhart While many of us have mastered the art of emailing, texting, tweeting, Facebook Messenger and other electronic communication, verbal communication is still the best way to effectively communicate on a construction project. A form of digital communication we try to discourage when facilitating problem projects is email. Although email is trackable and can deliver a message to a team member quickly, it’s not appropriate […]

Three VCG Projects Named IPI Partnered Projects of the Year

The International Partnering Institute (IPI) recently announced the 2017 John L. Martin Partnered Project of the Year Award winners, and three projects facilitated by Ventura Consulting Group were chosen among this year’s recipients. The award-winning teams will be recognized at the IPI Collaboration 2017 Conference and Awards Ceremony on May 18-19 at the Hilton San Francisco Airport Bayfront in Burlingame, CA. The IPI Awards were developed to celebrate success, share […]

Bay Bridge Demolition Project Wins AGC of America Partnering Award

We’ve often witnessed collaborative project teams overcome seemingly insurmountable tasks using a one-team mindset focused on common goals, and harnessing the collective expertise of the project team. Such was the case on Phase 1 of the San-Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge East Span removal project. While there were many who doubted it could ever be done—blow up a gigantic concrete bridge foundation in the middle of San Francisco Bay using tons […]

Iconic Virginia Street Bridge Project Transports its Project Team to a Higher Level

The Virginia Street Bridge replacement project in Reno, Nevada not only ensured a means of transporting residents and visitors over the Truckee River into the heart of the “Biggest Little City” in the country, but it also brought together the project team, various project stakeholders and the local community in a phenomenal way. Highlighting the project’s collaborative partnership, the team was recently honored with the International Partnering Institute’s 2017 Partnered […]

Why is Communication Important on Construction Projects?

While facilitating Partnering programs for project teams across the globe over the last 10 years, I have asked construction team members, “What is the key to great construction projects?” One of the most popular responses nearly everyone seems to agree with is, communication. It’s true. Communication, or how we express our positions, interpretations and requests is the key to success on construction projects. This is not theory. It has been […]

La Pata Highway Project Garners Two Industry Awards

Collaborative Partnering was instrumental to the success of the La Pata Avenue Gap Connector project in San Clemente, Calif. Completed in August 2016, the $60 million project recently won the ASCE Project of the Year Award and was named #2 on Road & Bridges magazine’s Top 10 Roads for 2016. Created in 2000, the publication’s annual ranking recognizes the top projects in North America based on project challenges, impact to […]

Guest House at Graceland Opens

In honor of Elvis Presley’s birthday this month, we are sharing news about the $92 million Guest House at Graceland Hotel project which opened this past October. We are thrilled to have been a part of this iconic hospitality project, which is fit for a king, particularly the “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll! As you can imagine, the 450-room hotel was featured in People magazine, as well as many other […]

Neal Flesner Shares 6 Tips for Effective Project Communication at AGC of California Annual Convention

Neal Flesner of Ventura Consulting Group recently gave a talk to members of the AGC of California on the topic of “6 Tips for Increasing Effective Communication on Your Projects.” His presentation was part of the AGC of California Annual Convention which was held in Monterey, California this past October. More than 50 conference attendees participated in the educational session, which focused on the factors that contribute to poor or […]

Non-Team Players are a Costly Project Threat

By Neal Flesner, MIPI Many construction professionals I work with say that people skills are equally important, if not more important, than technical ability is for achieving professional success. We all come across challenging individuals with difficult personalities from time to time, and that’s when our people skills really make a difference. The larger the project, the greater the likelihood that you will encounter an unruly personality who can adversely […]

Six Partnering Lessons Learned In 2016

It’s that time of year again! Whether you are ordering a peppermint mocha in Starbucks, waiting for your flight in an airport or buying gifts at the mall, the sounds of the season fill the air.  (While many of us welcome the feeling of good cheer these joyful tunes evoke, I feel a great deal of empathy for the employees who must endure the same soundtrack for 30-plus days straight.) Along […]

Project-First Mindset Brings Futuristic Federal Courthouse to L.A.

Congratulations to the world class project team on the official opening of the General Services Administration’s (GSA) new $350 million United States Courthouse in downtown Los Angeles. The design and construction team joined with local, state and federal public officials to celebrate this momentous occasion during a recent ribbon cutting ceremony. Built by the design-build team of Clark Construction Group and SOM, the 633,000-square-foot project was substantially completed this past […]

World Class Teamwork is NOT Conditional Upon Project Circumstances

  “Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start.” —Nido Qubein, Author, Consultant By Jim Eisenhart The vast majority of general contractors, owners, designers and construction managers that I have surveyed attribute extraordinary project success and great teamwork to one or more of the following circumstances: We had good people and all got along.  The plans and specs were clear and complete. Site […]

Partnering’s Role in the Age of Collaboration

Partnering in construction has evolved since the early ’90s, playing an even more crucial role in today’s increasingly collaborative building environment. VCG President Jim Eisenhart (pictured) and leading A/E/C industry professionals were recently interviewed by Engineering News-Record regarding modern partnering practices and how their firms are employing partnering strategies to mitigate challenges, increase profits and ensure project success in the age of increased collaboration. Two VCG facilitated projects exemplifying partnering at its best are highlighted in […]

Partnering Empowers Naval Fuel Facility Project Team

“Bravo Zulu” (well done)!  This was the resounding praise declared by members of the project team upon completion of the U.S. Navy’s San Clemente Island Fuel Facility renovation and upgrade project.  The Naval Supply Systems Command Fleet Logistics Center (NAVSUP FLC) San Diego commemorated the success of this important project during a ribbon cutting ceremony on July 6, 2016. “At a partnering session about a year ago, we all committed […]

2017 Industry Award Competitions

The 2017 construction industry award season is upon us, and we can help provide information, testimonials and award entry services to help your team get the recognition they deserve. Industry awards not only acknowledge the efforts of the project team, they also extend your group’s world class teamwork by forming stronger bonds with project owners, garnering online and print publicity and furthering industry best practices. Please reach out to us if you […]

The Vital Ingredients for Setting Project Goals

“Clear, common goals that the whole project team buys into are the centerpiece. They ensure we are all in alignment with common expectations. These need to be set early.”    — Jim Bostic, St. Joseph Health Systems / Petra ICS By Jim Eisenhart, VCG President We have a project team ranking system at Ventura Consulting Group that is divided into three areas—Business as Usual, Good Teams and World Class Teams.  In […]

Partnering of Expo Line Reaches Above and Beyond

Plenty of excitement and news coverage surrounded the May 20th opening of the new Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority Expo Line Phase 2 project. The team involved with its design and construction was equally thrilled, not only with the project’s outcome, but with the partnering process that helped them overcome various obstacles to achieve success. Built to provide an efficient means of transportation from downtown Los Angeles to the beaches […]

Partnering Paves the Road to Success on Caltrans District 8 Project

Caltrans recognized 13 project teams during the 2016 Caltrans Excellence in Partnering Award Ceremony held on May 4, 2016. The Caltrans District 8 Interstate-40 Rehabilitation at Kelbaker Road project team was among those honored for utilizing partnering and best practices to help ensure successful project implementation. Facilitated by Neal Flesner of Ventura Consulting Group, the $16.1 million project involved the rehabilitation of a section of Interstate 40 in San Bernardino […]

IPI Award Recipients Report Exceptional Project Results

The International Partnering Institute (IPI) celebrated its 7th Annual IPI Partnering Awards Ceremony on May 19, 2016.  Paul Crotty, VCG Facilitator and Large Project Director, was among the project owners and other design and construction professionals in attendance at the annual event, which was held at the Hilton San Francisco Airport Bayfront this year. As reported by the IPI, the nominated project teams boasted the following project results for their […]

VA Charlotte Healthcare Center Opens

Reprinted with permission from Partnering Magazine – Jan/Feb 2016 When the $104 Million Charlotte Veterans Affairs Health Care Center project was awarded to developer Childress Klein-Cambridge Healthcare Solutions, LLC (CKC) in 2013, the team anticipated a variety of challenges. Not only was there a great deal of media attention surrounding Veterans Affairs (VA) construction projects at the time, but the complexities involved with lease-leaseback delivery, high community expectations, and a […]

Communication – How Not to Screw Things Up….

We hear this all of the time, “The key to success is communication.”  Although smart phones, tablets and a multitude of apps are providing additional modes of communication, the challenges and potential for miscommunication are increasing.  And, the larger the project, the greater the chance of missteps and miscues.  If you want to improve your team and your own levels of communication, you must continue to learn, grow and help those around you. […]

The 2016 IPI Award Winners Are…

The International Partnering Institute (IPI) recently announce the winners of the 2016 Partnered Project of the Year awards, and three projects facilitated by Ventura Consulting Group were among the impressive list of recipients. The award-winning teams will be honored at the 7th Annual IPI Award Ceremony and Conference on Thursday, May 19 at the Hilton San Francisco Airport Bayfront. According to the IPI, the purpose of the awards is to […]

VCG Facilitated Project Earns 2016 AGC Marvin M. Black Award

  Congratulations to the project team on The County of San Diego Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility in Santee, California for receiving the highly-regarded 2016 Marvin M. Black Partnering Excellence Award! The award is a category in the Associated General Contractors (AGC) of America 2016 Alliant Build America Awards and was recently announced during the association’s annual convention in San Antonio, Texas. Built by Balfour Beatty Construction, the new […]

Partnering Garners Impressive Results on VA Health Center Project

Congratulations to the design and construction team members on the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Butler Health Care Center project in Butler, Pennsylvania! Partnering and world-class teamwork on this important military project are paying off big time with the team on track to exceed its mutual partnering goals for schedule, safety, community outreach and much more. Check out these impressive achievements: Construction of the 168,000-square-foot health center is six months […]

Developing A Winning Strategy

As built environment industry leaders, many of us are involved in the strategic planning for the companies we serve. We all know the importance of developing a strategy in order to achieve the goals we have set for our company, but how do we know if our strategy is a winning one? I recently read an article on with some key tests on “How to Tell if You Have […]

The 2016 Construction Industry Award Season Is Here!

The 2016 construction industry award season is here and your friends at Ventura Consulting Group can provide information, testimonials and award entry services to help your team get the recognition they deserve. Industry awards not only acknowledge the efforts of the project team, they also extend your group’s world class teamwork by forming stronger bonds with project owners, garnering online and print publicity and furthering industry best practices. We would be pleased […]

Delivering Negative Feedback is an Important Leadership Trait

As a manager, it is your responsibility and role within your company and team to ensure that everyone is doing their job diligently and to the best of their abilities.  When things are running smoothly, it is easy to keep morale high through praise and positive feedback.  This type of news is always easy to deliver and welcomed by all employees. However, as anyone in a leadership position can attest, delivering […]

Lean Construction, Integrated Project Delivery, and Collaborative Partnering – How Do They Differ?

Hi Rob, I am a project manager for a specialty contractor.  We work on schools, hospitals, and other buildings in both the public and private sector.  I have heard a lot about Lean Construction, Integrated Project Delivery, and Collaborative Partnering.  They all seem pretty similar to me… what’s the difference? – Integrated Builder Dear Integrated Builder, This is a common and important question.  It is extremely important for the building […]

September Special – Good to World Class Book for $19.95

  CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE FOR $19.95 Just “good” project teamwork is no longer good enough. In today’s construction environment, project owners commonly use best value selection and pre-qualification to choose their project team. Furthermore, these projects are incorporating alternative project delivery methods and collaborative technological tools such as BIM. With all of these innovations and changes, your best project results in terms of schedule, cost and overall excellence for […]

Six Rules for Effective Team Leadership in Partnering Sessions

By Neal Flesner, VCG Effective leadership has a great impact on any construction project and plays a key role in its ultimate success or failure.  Our experience tells us that the engagement and support of senior leadership in the partnering process is crucial to project success.  This seems like a no-brainer, but all too often, senior leaders are absent from team meetings or partnering sessions or don’t fully engage when […]

Rare Fossils on a Construction Site – Cool or Frightful?

To a non-construction professional, finding a rare animal fossil may seem pretty awesome and even kind of cool!  These prehistoric bones are a glimpse into the past and evoke curiosity in most of us.Question such as, “What was walking on these lands long ago,” or “What kind of animal was this,” cross our minds. However, to the seasoned project manager or building owner, while finding prehistoric remains are surely an important […]

Kosciuszko Bridge on Budget and On Time

The $554.7 million construction of the Kosciuszko Bridge will consist of six lanes, which will carry the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway over Newtown Creek.  Upon completion of the first span of the project, 160,000 vehicles per day bound for both Brooklyn and Queens will be transferred onto it, with three lanes going in each direction.  The project is currently in its second year and is estimated to be completed by early 2017. The second […]

10 Tips for Leaders When Things Go Wrong

As is often the case, it is easy to see the strengths of a proven leader when a team executes and delivers as expected on a given task or project.  However, regardless of the overall team strength or amount of time and energy spent planning, eventually trouble will strike. While unexpected obstacles can be disconcerting, it’s often hurdles like these that provide an opportunity for a true leader to shine.  Last […]

32 Behaviors That Can Poison Your Teams

  We often read Dan Rockwell’s blog Leadership Freak as I find it both informative and interesting.  There was a recent article he posted that I found particularly helpful as warning signs and behaviors  that can occur within a team that can be incredibly crippling and should serve as signals to leadership that change should be imminent in order to right the ship.  Click here to see “The Complete List of Toxic Behaviors That […]

Teamwork Earns RQ Construction and Bergelectric APWA Award

On Thursday, May 7, 2015, the San Diego & Imperial Counties Chapter of the American Public Works Association hosted a reception to present awards for public works projects exhibiting a high level of teamwork among the managing agency and the A/E/C team.  Among those projects honored was the $130 million communication and electrical upgrade project at Camp Pendleton, a JV between RQ Construction and Bergelectric. As is often the case with many […]

Building World-Class Teams Leads to World-Class Projects

In a continued display of world-class team building through partnering, two high profile projects facilitated by Ventura Consulting Group (VCG) were recently featured in Engineering News Record and California Builder & Engineer magazine. The news was in recognition of industry leading awards received by the projects. The St. Jude Medical Center Northwest Tower in Fullerton, California was the recipient of the Marvin M. Black Partnering Excellence Award and a Design-Build Merit Award, both are categories […]

“Who is a leader? You.” and Why most definitions of leadership are wrong.

Just this morning, as I walk into a partnering session in Honolulu, HI, I saw a whiteboard in the breezeway for the event site staff.  These are the people that coordinate the meetings, put together the rooms and serve food and coffee to the meeting attendees.  Yes, they are super important and their management is recognizing it. At the end of the day, everyone is and can be a leader.  […]

Developing World Class Teams by David Kirk

  This article is based on a speech given to members of the McKinsey & Company Sydney office in April 1992 by David Kirk. There are very few tricks for improving organizational performance left in the management deck of cards. In recent years, many eager corporate hands have played the organization redesign card; others, strategic planning; still others, value-based management. If they played them well, their companies are now fitter, […]

New Naval Base Coronado Fitness Center Project Completed Ahead of Schedule

Construction was recently completed two months ahead of schedule on a new Fitness and Liberty Center at Naval Base Coronado (NBC) in San Diego, Calif. A collaboration of NAVFAC Southwest and RQ Construction, the $43.9 million project is hailed as the “largest and best” fitness facility in the Navy. “The one word that comes to mind when I look at this facility is teamwork — the teamwork of everyone that […]

11 Proven Rules for Success From a Former Navy SEAL

As is often times the case, things in life don’t always go as planned.  The same is true for business and one’s career path.  I recently came across an interesting article written by former Navy SEAL Brent Gleeson with a story of just that; business throwing you a curve ball to which you have to figure out how to adapt, and FAST! The article goes on to explain that soon […]

IPI Funds Important Partnering Research

According to a recent Smart Market Report, “Managing Uncertainty and Expectations in Building Design and Construction,” the greatest risk to project success is the ability for the designer and contractor to resolve issues together along with the owner organization and that the ability for the team to collaborate is even more important than the selection of the project’s delivery method. For these reasons and more, the International Partnering Institute (IPI), whose mission is to […]

Create a Team Offense to Manage Project Risk

As a partnering facilitator on challenging building projects, I can share that effective communication among team members is the best offense in managing risk on any type of project. On a design-build hospital renovation project that I recently facilitated, project challenges related to unknown conditions and owner additions triggered each stakeholder’s conventional risk management strategies—such as case building and communicating entirely through emails and letters—all of which led to distrust […]

VCG Project Awarded American Public Work’s Association’s Public Works Project of the Year

The Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center has been selected as one of the American Public Works Association’s Public Works Projects of the Year for 2015. This project was facilitated by Neal Flesner of Ventura Consulting Group.  This honor will be commemorated during an awards ceremony to be held in conjunction with the 2015 International Public Works Congress and Exposition in Phoenix, Arizona and is scheduled for Monday, August 31, at 5:00 […]

VCG’s 2015 Marvin M. Black Partnering Excellence Award Winners

 On March 13 2015, the AGC celebrated its 33rd Annual Alliant Build America Awards Ceremony.  The Alliant sponsored event is conducted to recognize the highest achievements in construction for state-of-the-art advancement, outstanding project management and innovative construction techniques. Recipients of the Build America Awards have demonstrated construction excellence and are building a better world and improving our quality of life. Each project reflects the crucial combination of contractor excellence with talented […]

Rules On How To Be Effective By Delegating Responsibilities

 Solving problems for employees is like playing a game of fetch and that’s not a good thing. What do you say when a person gets into the habit of coming directly to you with a problem and asks, “What do you think I should do?” Your subconscious urge will be to provide you recommendation, or even make the decision for them. Your ego gets stroked because you get to play […]

At Least 10 Unnatural Acts of Misguided Management

At Least 10 Unnatural Acts of Misguided Management: 1. He only lied when his lips were moving. The CEO announcing to all of a firm’s employees, “there will be no layoffs,” over a pizza lunch in the warehouse. Ten days later, there were layoffs. 2. Coordination is over-rated. An executive team who despised each other so much, they never met. What do you think happened to this business? You’re right. […]

The Dark Side of Goal Setting

 Setting goals are crucial to success, but there are 4 practices you should avoid. As you can imagine, we are big fans of setting goals. Hundreds of studies conducted in numerous countries and contexts have demonstrated that setting goals can be a powerful driver of behavior and performance. However, a Harvard study suggests that whilst goal setting has many beneficial effects, there is a potential for significant side-effects if goals […]

Executing the Large, Complex Transit Project As A Network of Teams – By Jim Eisenhart

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Phase 2 of the Exposition (Expo) Light Rail Line, at $1.5 billion, has been hailed as the light rail project that will finally connect downtown city of Los Angeles residents with the beaches of Santa Monica. A milestone design-build project in Los Angeles’s massive more than $40 billion transit program. As with any large complex transit project, there are major challenges and […]

VCG’s 2015 IPI Awards Winners

On May 14th, 2015, IPI celebrated its 6th Annual IPI Partnering Awards Ceremony. Owners, Contractors, Facilitators, CMs, Designers, and other associated Construction professionals dedicated to construction culture change, gathered at the SFO International Airport Museum to Celebrate the Nation’s most collaborative organizations and Project Teams. Total contracted work: $2,079,873,557 Total budget savings: $135,878,595.74 (7% average savings) 19/23: ration of jobs without a Time Loss Incident 15/23: ratio of projects that […]

ARTIC Project Wins Many Awards and ENR Cover Story!

The city of Anaheim is home to big-ticket draws such as Angel Stadium, the Grove arena, the Honda Center sports venue and, of course, Disneyland. Now, it is home to an iconic structure that heralds the arrival of a new age of transit in traditionally auto-centric Southern California. The recently opened Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center (ARTIC) has won the 2014 Project of the Year award from the Orange County […]

Congratulations to VCG Client David Burrus as one of ENR’s Top 25 Newsmakers

The construction industry is full of excellent leadership, but the public rarely sees it in action—even if it ultimately benefits from better roads, buildings and other facilities. ENR’s annual Top 25 Newsmakers program recognizes outstanding achievements. “If I don’t have 100 balls in the air, I don’t work well. I get bored,” says David Burrus, referring to his multitasking skills. His love of quantifying everything, combined with his need for […]

Creating World Class Partnerships with Jim Eisenhart – Feb 2015 – Construction Executive

Partnering has become quite standard as a way for public sector owners such as the General Services Administration, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Caltrans to preclude litigation with design and construction teams—even as the industry has embraced more negotiated work and collaborative project delivery methods. “In the last 10 years, we have discovered there’s a distinction between good project teams that finish on time, on budget and with no […]

New Video on Sauvage during Transpac

Click on images below for videos!     Mr. Jim Eisenhart and crew took to the Pacific and raced the VCG Sponsored, Sauvage to Honolulu in the Bi-Annual Transpacific Yacht Race.  Here is a short video of that journey.  Enjoy. Also, here is the team Sauvage 2011 Transpac preparation and planning meeting video:   #1. Preparation is everything. As a team and individually, we spent over 6 months and most weekends […]

Are you practicing the 5 to 1 Ratio? – From

Think about your romantic relationship. Studies show that unless your positive interactions with your partner outnumber the negative interactions by a ratio of 5 to 1, the relationship is likely to fail. Yes, it takes 5 good interactions to make up for every 1 bad interaction. The 5 to 1 Ratio has another application. Studies show that negative information, negative experiences, and negative interactions have a far deeper impact on […]

Transpac 2011: World Class Teamwork Lessons Learned from VCG Sponsored SV Sauvage

#1.  Preparation is everything. As a team and individually, we spent over 6 months and most weekends either sailing, meeting or fixing/fabricating stuff for the boat.  We also did several ‘preparatory’ races.   The assumption was, stuff will break, things will go wrong,sails will blow out, lines will chafe thru.  Just like a construction project.  So either seek to prevent them as much as possible and then have a backup plan.  We were fortunate, nothing major happened except that the […]

The Cost of Conflict & The ROI of Having a World Class Team

From the February/March Issue of Partnering Magazine In December 2012, Julie Brockman, Ph D. of Michigan State University published a study entitled “The Interpersonal Cost of Conflict in Construction”. In a study of 41 jobsite conflicts, they found that on AVERAGE, 161 hours (~20 days) were spent attempting to manage each conflict. When they analyzed those work hours, managing each conflict cost the team, on AVERAGE, $10,948.00! I am sorry […]

11 Tips for Fixing Problem Projects for Immediate, Positive and Sustained Results

By Jim Eisenhart of Ventura Consulting Group From Partnering Magazine May/June 2014 Issue We have all been there. ‘There’ meaning having been on a project that despite good intentions has “gone south’. There are several truisms about behaviors on these projects. What are those behaviors? Excessive e-mails; a CYA mentality; everyone focused exclusively on playing ‘not to lose’ or risk avoidance; game playing and posturing; very reactive/crisis mode; complete distrust; […]

The 5 P’s of Productive Meetings – From

Excerpted from the book: Business Execution for RESULTS, by Stephen Lynch When I was a boy who dreamed of becoming a fighter pilot, I tried to learn everything I could about jet planes. That’s when I heard about flameout for the first time. A flameout is “the failure of a jet engine caused by the extinction of the flame in the combustion chamber.” I’ve never seen a jet engine flame out, […]

VCG Wins “Best in Class” Partnered Project at Caltrans Partnering Award Ceremony

Route I-5 Median Shoulder Improvement Project from Route 605 to Washington Blvd. This project upgraded the median barrier from Thrie Beam and Type 50 barrier to Type 60 concrete barrier along I-5 between Los Angeles and Orange County, including several bridges and undercrossings in the cities of Downey and Commerce. This high-volume freeway presented difficulties with safety; however, due to careful planning and a commitment to Partnering, the project was […]

New US Courthouse – Los Angeles, CA – August Update

The size of the “Cube”, by which the Courthouse is commonly referred, is well defined now with the structural steel in place and metal deck installation complete through Level 2.  The structure will continue to rise up through another nine levels and the roof to achieve the full “Cube” appearance. This progress through Level 2 has provided the required barrier for personnel safety at the lower levels and has permitted work to again move forward at […]

What to Do If Your Team Is in a Rut – From Harvard Business Review

Often, we encounter teams that are stuck.  Things aren’t working.  Processes are slow.  What can we do together to get through this?  Often these are large jobs, over long periods of time, where team members can sometimes feel isolated.  Here is a great article from HBR…… Another brainstorming session, another slew of tired ideas. Your team is in a rut, but what can you do about it? How can you […]

17 Things Successful Leaders Say Every Day

Everyone always refers to “good leadership” on their construction projects.  What is good leadership?  Where does it come from?  Truth be told, we are all leaders.  Whether we are on the frontlines putting work in place or reside in the corner office overseeing many projects, we all have leadership responsibilities.  How do we execute them better?  Here is an article from that really dials in some dialogue that you […]

2014 IPI Awards Winners – VCG Wins 2 Awards & VCG Facilitators Recognized

On May 15th, 2014, IPI celebrated its 5th Annual IPI Partnering Awards Ceremony. Owners, Contractors, Facilitators, CMs, Designers, and other associated Construction professionals dedicated to construction culture change, gathered at the SFO International Airport Museum to Celebrate the Nation’s most collaborative organizations and Project Teams. Total contracted work: $868,979,087 Total budget savings: $529,241 
5/9: ratio of projects that came in on time or early 7/9: ratio of jobs without a […]

AGC of California Announces 2014 Award Winners – Naval Hospital, Camp Pendleton Wins Again!

AGC of California honored top projects, companies and individuals in the California construction industry during its prestigious annual 2014 Awards banquet held at Disney’s Grand Californian in Anaheim on June 7, 2014. The prestigious black tie event, the “Oscars” evening for the construction industry, was attended by more than 250 people from top construction firms throughout the state. Seven outstanding projects built by AGC of California contractors were chosen as […]

Naval Hospital at Camp Pendleton Earns Two AGC Alliant Build America Awards

  From – The Naval Hospital at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton received two Alliant Build America awards yesterday from the Associated General Contractors of America, including Best New Building Project and the Marvin M. Black Excellence in Partnering award.   McCarthy, in joint venture with Clark Construction Group – California, LP, delivered the design-build project six months ahead of schedule and more than $100 million below the Navy’s original […]

How Primavera Saved a Marriage & 4 Tips for Scheduling Success By Neal Flesner

Tom was ready.  He had been living the bachelor dream for a few years now and finally found a young lady that shared his passion and zest for life.  This wasn’t his first try, Tom had been married before, but the flying, working and living was just too much for his first wife.  This time things would be different. Amanda was the bride to be.  She was in heaven and […]

Ribbon Cut on Wharf Improvement at Naval Base Guam

Guam – Construction on the first two military buildup projects related to the Marine Corps relocation to Guam has been completed and a ribbon cutting ceremony was held at Naval Base Guam two weeks ago to celebrate. Officials say these projects mark the beginning of more buildup related projects to come.  These projects are the U.S. Marine Corps funded Apra Harbor wharf improvement and the government of Japan funded U.S. […]

Neal Flesner Speaks at The City Engineers of Orange County Meeting

On Monday, February 3rd, 2014, Neal Flesner presented at the monthly lunch meeting of The City Engineers of Orange County.  Neal spoke to the group on the behaviors of truly World Class teams, what it takes to deliver truly World Class teamwork and how leaders can enable their teams to strive for and achieve World Class teamwork and results on their construction projects. Participating Cities: Anaheim, Brea, Buena Park, Cerritos, Costa […]

Ribbon Cutting Set for Air Force Technical Applications Center

The Air Force Technical Applications Center, at Patrick AFB in Florida, is undergoing a $158 million military construction project for a new headquarters building, which includes a radiochemistry lab that will be used to identify radiological or nuclear debris in support of AFTAC’s Nuclear Debris Collection and Analysis Program. AFTAC is the only organization in the federal government whose mission it is to detect and report technical data from foreign […]

Six Construction Leadership Lessons for 2013 – By Neal Flesner

Almost another year in the books.  Oh man!  Over the course of the last 365 days, we have worked with hundreds of leaders throughout the construction industry, spoken at industry events and visited countless project teams.  As we get ready for 2014, we wanted to take a moment to share with you some of the key lessons that we learned from our project teams over the last year.  That is […]

“The Onlooker” – Expo 2 is Over 50% Complete!

This photo was taken by Dave Vornberger of LA Expo.  Expo Light Rail Transit Construction at night lowering the bridge at Sawtelle Blvd.  Adjacent street light pole has a banner for the Annenberg Space for Photography show for National Geographic photos. Phase two of the Expo Light Rail Line, from Culver City to Santa Monica, is now 50 percent complete and is on-time and on-budget, according to the Expo E-News […]

$100M Under Budget & Ahead of Schedule – Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton

The new $450 million Replacement Naval Hospital is not only $100 million under budget and ahead of schedule, but also is one of the first major US Design-Build projects to use a unique 100% turnkey equipment procurement process.  Clark/McCarthy, a Joint Venture (CMJV) is responsible for design, construction, medical planning and Initial  Outfitting & Training of the 500,000sf Replacement Naval Hospital at Camp Pendleton. In addition to the responsibilities traditionally […]

Dining Facilities at MCB Camp Pendleton Wins ENR Best Project

The results are for the ENR California Best Projects 2013.  The team of Whiting Turner & Clark Nexsen working with NAVFAC Southwest and partnering facilitated by Jim Eisenhart of VCG has won the Best Project in Government Buildings for the Edson and Chappo Dining Facilities, located in Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton. On this project the Whiting-Turner design-build team was challenged to design and build two, identical – at least on the concept drawings […]

VCG Kicks Off Partnering Efforts with LA Federal Courthouse

Paul Crotty of Ventura Consulting Group recently kicked off the partnering efforts for the construction of the new Federal Courthouse located in Los Angeles, CA.  The team broke ground on the project on August 8th, 2013.  The approx. 600,000 square-foot building was proposed back in 2001 and approved by Congress for $400 million, but the project came to a halt in 2006 when the Government Accountability Office found that costs […]

L.A. Light Rail Clears Hurdles Above and Below Ground (with Partnering)

                      Jim Eisenhart of Ventura Consulting Group is currently working with the Expo Light Rail Team in Los Angeles and their partnering efforts were recently highlighted as an effective tool in delivering project success. From ENR – August 2013 – “One thing we did on this job that was unique was facilitated partnering with each utility in an effort to […]

World Class Teamwork – A Real Return on Investment

We always get the question, “What is the true return on my investment with partnering on my project?”  Truth be told, there is no definitive way to measure it.  We often get comments that range from, “Partnering saved us over 2 months on our schedule”, to “Without partnering on our project, this project could have been a disaster.”  So how do we justify the expense (or investment) if we cannot […]

Fixing the Problem Project with Positive and Sustained Results by Jim Eisenhart

CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL ARTICLE IN CONSTRUCTION EXECUTIVE Most contractors have been involved in a projects that began with good intentions but went south. Conventional wisdom in these circumstances says the best course of action is to manage or minimize the risk and costs, or at best, fix the current problems. But this approach can often just exacerbate the problem project. To get project stakeholders on an adversarial or […]

World Champion Goal Setting – Laird Hamilton Style

By Neal Flesner, Ventura Consulting Group Every so often, I get to travel to some far-out places to work with construction teams in developing their strategic plan for project success. Kauai is no exception. With a day to spare prior to some work at the PMRF site on the Southeast side of the island, I thought I might travel up to the North Shore to check things out. The beaches […]

NRG Completes Repowering and Modernization Project at 550 Megawatt El Segundo Energy Center

EL SEGUNDO, Calif.-Aug. 2, 2013– NRG Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NRG), has entered commercial operation at its El Segundo Energy Center, a natural gas–fueled, combined-cycle generating facility located near Los Angeles, CA. The plant produces 550 megawatts (MW) of efficient and flexible electricity to the California grid – enough to supply power to nearly 450,000 homes. The fast-start, rapid response power generation employed by El Segundo delivers more than half of its generating capacity in less than 10 minutes […]

Executing the Challenging Project: Focus on Opportunities as a Team

          Executing the Challenging Project: Focus on Opportunities as a Team AS FEATURED IN CONSTRUCTOR MAGAZINE – BY JIM EISENHART – PRESIDENT OF VCG A major renovation to an operating hospital is about as challenging a project as you can find. And the Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital was no exception. Owner changes and major unforeseen existing conditions had put this $28 million project well behind schedule […]

US Federal Courthouse in San Diego, CA Wins AGC Excellence in Partnering Award

Recently, Hensel Phelps Construction, was awarded the Excellence in Partnering Award for Projects over $50M by the Associated General Contractors of California.  This award recognizes the best project in terms of collaboration, teamwork and overall results.  In addition, this courthouse won a 2010 GSA Design Award. The new U.S. Courthouse promises to be a landmark in the San Diego skyline. Construction on the $300 million project began in April 2006, […]

Caltrans is Partnering for Success and Recognizing the Results

FROM CALTRANS NEWSLETTER – MAY 2013 – We all want to do a good job, get recognized for it and enjoy going to work—all at the same time. You may ask how that’s possible in the world of construction, where changes, challenges and disputes happen daily. The Division of Construction administers a Partnering Program aimed at doing just that.  While the term “partnering” is thrown around in many circles as […]

Q&D Construction Wins NDOT Partnering Award

  Q&D Construction recently was awarded a Silver Partnering Award for their efforts on the NDOT 3477 Project which took place in 2012 in Winnemucca, Nevada on the I-95.  Nevada faces a multibillion-dollar transportation funding deficit. Meanwhile, transportation projects grow more complex, potentially leading to construction-related problems or delays. To formalize an already-strong working relationship and most efficiently build Nevada’s needed transportation infrastructure, NDOT and the contracting community have jointly […]


      ENR is seeking entries for their annual awards program, which is dedicated to honoring the best construction projects and the companies that designed and built them in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Projects compete in 20 specialized categories, ranging from airports to sports/entertainment. Independent juries of industry leaders in design and construction from each of ENR’s ten regional editions will judge the projects using five criteria, including […]

Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton Continues World Class Culture and Results

Recently, a senior member of the construction team was quoted as saying, “Team members continue to say that they will never get to work on a project this great again.  To many this is truly a career project.” As the Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton draws near a close, the team has already been recognized for their extraordinary efforts and achievements on this project.  Just recently, they were awarded a Design Build Institute of […]

VCG Projects Win Four Awards at IPI Awards Celebration at SFO

Four projects facilitated by Jim Eisenhart of Ventura Consulting Group received accolades for their efforts in collaboration, teamwork and delivering project excellence.  This was the 4th year for the International Partnering Institute Awards at the San Francisco Airport Museum.  The house was packed with owners, contractors, CMs and other industry executives to celebrate the success of these outstanding projects. The following project teams were recognized for their outstanding ability in […]

VCG’s Neal Flesner Delivers Keynote at Caltrans’ District 7 Meeting

On Friday, April 26th, Mr. Neal Flesner delivered the keynote address at the Caltrans District 7 Resident Engineer’s Meeting and Partnering Awards.  Mr. Flesner spoke to the importance of collaboration, cooperation and common goals on major construction projects, providing the audience with a litany of real-world examples where large and small project teams had overcome major challenges to achieve extraordinary results on their projects. Caltrans’ Partnering Program helps the department […]

2013 Caltrans Excellence In Partnering Awards – VCG Projects Win Multiple Awards

The Caltrans Excellence in Partnering Awards recognize project teams who use Partnering and its best practices to facilitate successful project implementation. In 2013, the 23 award-winning projects demonstrate the benefits of partnering to  Caltrans, its partners and the public – project statistics show that overwhelmingly, the projects finished safely, on time and within budget. These 23 award winning projects had a combined contract value of $840 Million and saved almost […]

Q&D Completes Work at Lake Tahoe Four Years Early

  “Our partnering goal was July 1 2013.  Contractually we had 220 working days. We probably used 165 days.  That isn’t the whole story though.  In 2011, we only worked 55 days, or so. Without partnering we probably would have worked 70 days this year.  The result of the community outreach that started as a result of partnering also enabled us to work longer hours every day.  At the end […]

Calaveras Dam Project Update

Found some great info from the Calaveras Dam Replacement Project HERE!  The Calaveras Dam Replacement Project work site is a busy place on an average day. Machines both large and small are in constant motion, moving soils and materials from one side of the site to dispose of them on the other. However, this Wednesday around lunchtime was different. Work paused, for a short time, to celebrate the team’s achievement of […]

Critical Lifts Completed For MCAS Miramar Hangar 7

“Overall the project is about 27 percent complete with more than $28 million work in place,” said Paul Silver, NAVFAC Southwest construction manager for this project. “This project is on track to finish one year ahead of schedule.  “The quality of the work has been top-class,” said Silver. “The customer is excited about this project, and we know they will be very happy with the end product. This world-class team […]

Six Strategies To Transform Your Project Team by Jim Eisenhart

  By Jim Eisenhart, President of Ventura Consulting Group COMMUNICATION PROTOCOL: Adopt a communication protocol of “No e-mails or written communication except to confirm or memorialize a verbal conversation”. TEAM GOALS: Spend 30 minutes with them developing team goals which:  Acknowledge the reality of where the team is today and what would be an extraordinary future if “they could not fail” Acknowledge but are not limited by the contract or […]

RQ Construction Completes P-1019 Counter Battery Radar Facility at Camp Pendleton

  On August 16th, a ribbon cutting was held to commemorate the completion of the Counter Battery Radar Project. Invitees enjoyed a brief ceremony and then were able to tour the new Administration Building. These facilities support military personnel with the utilization and maintenance of the 11th Marine Counter Battalion Radar system. “The P-1019 counter battery radar facility represents NAVFAC Southwest In-House-Design team’s ability to provide buildings that are representative […]

Tahoe Projects with NDOT and Q&D Construction Create Positive Impact

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Almost six years since its inception, the roundabout at the intersection of Highway 431 and Highway 28 is finally coming to fruition. The benefits go far beyond the obvious ones of traffic flow and safety. Air pollution and fuel consumption will be reduced dramatically since cars will flow through the intersection instead of idling for long periods of time. The decrease in pollutants and particulates will […]

VCG Facilitates 2 ENR San Francisco Golden Gate Bridge Award Winning Projects

Paul Crotty, of VCG, facilitated an inter-agency partnering process for the project development for the Golden Gate Bridge 75 Anniversary. Projects included: Golden Gate Bridge Visitor Enhancement Project, San Francisco – Fisher Development Lands End Lookout, San Francisco – Plant Construction These projects were winners of the ENR California 2012 Award of Merit.  Click here for the full list of winners.

Doyle Drive 3 by CC Myers, Inc. Wins ENR California 2012 Best Transportation Project

CC Myers, Inc has been awarded the ENR California 2012 Best Transportation Project for their work on the Doyle Drive 3 Phase of the Presidio Parkway.  The Presidio Parkway project is comprised of local, state, and federal agencies, a partnership which includes the California Department of Transportation, San Francisco County Transportation Authority, Presidio Trust, National Park Service, California Department of Veterans Affairs, the Golden Gate Bridge Highway Transportation District, the […]

VCG Facilitated Expo Phase 2 Begins Major Construction

Major construction began Monday on the second phase of the light rail Expo Line from Culver City to Santa Monica with the drilling of piling holes for a new bridge over Olympic Boulevard at Centinela Avenue. When operational in 2016, the $2.4 billion, 15.2-mile Expo line will run between Santa Monica and downtown Los Angeles. Construction of the first phase, connecting Culver City to downtown Los Angeles, began in 2006, […]

VCG Partnering Two Major Tunnel Projects

Jim Eisenhart of VCG is currently working on two extraordinary tunneling projects on the West Coast.  The first being the SR-99 Tunnel in Seattle, WA.  “Crews are clearing dirt in Seattle to make way for an 80-foot-deep launch pit for the massive boring machine that will dig the $2 billion Highway 99 tunnel that will run under the old Alaskan Way Viaduct. Concrete shafts have been installed for the pit’s four 110-foot-deep walls. […]

50 United Nations Plaza – LEED Platinum Historical Renovation

SAN FRANCISCO – HKS’s renovation of 50 United Nations Plaza (UNP), a 350,000-square-foot federal building in San Francisco, will be one of the first GSA historical restorations anticipated to achieve LEED Platinum Certification. The building is currently undergoing its first major upgrade since it was constructed in 1936 in the heart of San Francisco’s Civic Center. The project is currently under construction, with an estimated completion date of mid-2013. This […]

IPI Voices of Experience – Jim Eisenhart – Ventura Consulting Group

In this video, IPI Board of Advisor Member and Partnering Facilitator Cinda Bond interviews IPI Excellence in Partnering Facilitation Award recipient, Jim Eisenhart of Ventura Consulting Group.

IPI Voices of Experience – Neal Flesner – Ventura Consulting Group

In this interview, Partnering Facilitator Neal Flesner of Ventura Consulting Group answers a question about a great example of Partnering by IPI Board of Advisors Member Cinda Bond.

5550 Wilshire Wins Gold Nugget Grand Award

The 49th ANNUAL GOLD NUGGET AWARDS recognizing builders, developers, architects, and land planners with communities and projects in the United States and ALL international countries.  Gold Nugget winners share one common denominator: excellence and innovation in addressing complex design/build issues. The competition Co-sponsored by BUILDER, a national magazine of the housing industry. Co-sponsors include major building product manufacturers, financial institutions and builders, architects and associates in the real estate field. […]

Jim Eisenhart Accepts Facilitator of the Year Award

    Mr. Jim Eisenhart, President of the Ventura Consulting Group, was the inaugural recipient of the International Partnering Institute’s 2012 Excellence in Partnering Facilitation award given on May 17th in San Francisco.  Jim was selected on the basis of his facilitation skills and his industry leadership.  Mr. Eisenhart has personally led partnering processes on over 700 projects worldwide from the Pentagon Renovation to the San Francisco Bay Bridge. Click […]

Jim Eisenhart’s Article in Engineering News-Record

Achieving World Class Project Teamwork – With No Excuses As seen in ENR on May 21st, 2012 Click here for the full article The excuses. I have heard them all by now: “You’ve got to have good people to have a good team” or “You can’t have a high performance team on a public, low-bid project” or “There has to be sufficient resources and funding.” Consider that great or world-class […]

VCG Facilitated Projects Win Four Awards at IPI 2012 Ceremony

Each year, the International Partnering Institute recognizes projects and individuals who best exemplify the principals of partnering and promote our mission – to create a culture of partnership. The purpose of the awards is to celebrate success, share lessons learned and best practices, and to acknowledge the collaborative efforts of teams and individuals who achieve extraordinary results.  On May 17th, 2012 four VCG Facilitated Project Team’s were awarded IPI Excellence […]

VCG Projects Receive 7 Caltrans Partnering Awards

On May 9th, 2012 in Sacramento, CA, 7 VCG facilitated Caltrans projects won awards for partnering excellence.  As stated on Caltrans’ website, “Caltrans and the Construction Industry are committed to making partnering the way we do business. Partnering promotes open and honest communication, trust, understanding and teamwork. The field guide is written for both Caltrans and contractor personnel working at the project level to convey Caltrans and industry commitment to […]

92/880 Project Wins AGC of California Partnering & Project Management Awards

The winning projects, along with all of the Constructor Awards finalists named in this year’s competition, were honored as the “best of the best” in California construction during the 2012 Awards Banquet and presentation at The Palace Hotel, San Francisco, on April 14. The prestigious black tie event, the “Oscars” evening for the construction industry, was attended by more than 300 people from top construction firms throughout the state. In […]

Neal Flesner works with Naval CECOS Basic Class #252 at Port Hueneme, California – Construction Partnering with NAVFAC

On Friday, April 13th, Neal Flesner of VCG visited the Naval Civil Engineer Corps Officers School, Basic Class #252 at Port Hueneme, California.  Neal reviewed some of the basic tenets of construction partnering on NAVFAC projects, shared his NAVFAC experiences and the value of collaboration on large military projects. The Civil Engineer Corps Officer Basic Qualification Course is the foundation of a 16-week “pipeline” training program designed to prepare newly commissioned […]

Neal Flesner Presents at Caltrans District 7 Resident Engineer & Partnering Award Meeting

On Thursday, March 8th, 2012, Neal Flesner, Construction Partnering Facilitator, facilitated a panel with Caltrans personnel and District 7 General Contractors on the benefits and best practices around partnering on Caltrans projects. The panel included: Issam Abumuhor of Caltrans Yanina Bashoura of Caltrans Emile Eid of Caltrans Mike Kotal of Chumo Construction Toby Krutz of Flatiron Constructors Joe McLoughlin of J McLoughlin Engineering For the next 20 years or more, public transportation […]

VCG Projects to Receive International Partnering Institute Awards in May

  VCG has been a member of the International Partnering Institute for 2 years and on May 17th, 2012 will be honored with 4 of their partnered projects receiving awards.  IPI Partnered Projects of the Year honor Project Teams who have exhibited the highest levels of collaboration on projects completed in 2011.  These projects have demonstrated exceptional teamwork through construction partnering.  The four projects that will be recognized: Diamond Level […]

Jim Eisenhart to Receive the 2012 IPI Excellence in Partnering Facilitation

  The International Partnering Institute’s Excellence in Partnering Facilitation Award goes to individuals who have advanced the profession of Construction Partnering Facilitation through outstanding work on both individual projects and on a strategic level in the industry. Jim Eisenhart has dedicated his career to drawing greatness from his Project Teams and has grown the profession through his writing and ability to train others to adopt a collaborative approach. IPI is […]

World Class Payoffs – 2012 Marvin M. Black Awards at AGC National Convention – Honolulu, Hawaii

Named for AGC’s 1991 President Marvin M. Black – an ardent supporter of the partnering process–the Liberty Mutual Marvin M. Black Excellence in Partnering Awards recognize the successful partnerships and collaborations that work to improve construction projects. Contractors honored with this award stand out for their ability in the following areas: Signing a formal partnering charter Achieving a common goal Honoring all stake holders Resolving Conflict Improving communication on the […]

VCG Presents at the 93rd Annual AGC National Convention in Honolulu, HI

On Thursday, March 15th, Jim Eisenhart and Neal Flesner along with Mr. Gerry Majkut of DCK Worldwide and Mr. Wayne Lindholm of Hensel Phelps Construction, presented “Raising the Bar on Construction Teamwork:  Your Projects Best Tool for Managing Risk, Controlling Cost & Achieving Overall Project Excellence & Personal Fulfillment. Mr. Majkut & Mr. Lindholm shared their experiences on the distinction between just good and truly World Class Project Teams on […]

Pendleton Breaks Ground on Water Treatment Plant

CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. — Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Southwest and members of the Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton community held a groundbreaking ceremony for the Northern Region Tertiary Treatment Plant Dec. 15 at Camp Pendleton.  NAVFAC Southwest awarded CDM/FILANC (a joint venture) the $121.3 million design-build contract Sept. 28, 2010, to construct the treatment plant.  Jim Eisenhart of Ventura Consulting facilitated the Construction Partnering workshop for the CDM/FILANC/NAVFAC design […]

Q & D Construction Wins 2011 AGC PINNACLE Awards

Northern Nevada’s construction community showcased its best work of the past year at the 13th annual PINNACLE Awards, sponsored by the Nevada Chapter of the Associated General Contractors.  The PINNACLE Awards program was established in 1999 by the Nevada Chapter AGC to honor the “Best of the Best” in Northern Nevada construction projects, recognizing construction leadership, excellence and community spirit. Independent judges measure entries based on safety, craftsmanship, challenges met, […]

Jim Eisenhart and the CMs of Yesterday, Today & Beyond

On November, 4th, 2011, Jim Eisenhart participated in a panel for the 22nd annual VANIR 2011 PM/CM Conference.  Panel members included John Wong (LAUSD) & Craig Shulman (LPA, Inc).  This was facilitated by John Kuprenas and Sam Yu of Vanir.  The panel discussed the evolving role of a construction manager, the utilization of new deliver methods, advances in technology, increased complexity of projects and the sophistication of clients.  Mr. Eisenhart […]

VCG Hosts World Class BBQ at Camp Pendleton Hospital

SAN DIEGO, CALIF. — The 500,000-square-foot Replacement Hospital at Camp Pendleton topped out today. The Clark/McCarthy design-build team erected more than 4,000 tons of structural steel to reach the milestone. The team, with Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Southwest, marked the completion of the project’s structure with a jobsite lunch and celebration. The Replacement Hospital at Camp Pendleton Project team has worked more than 250,000 manhours over the past 14 months […]

Ghilotti Bros., Inc & Ventura Consulting Group

Ventura Consulting Group has a long-standing working relationship with Ghilotti Bros, Inc. (GBI) in Marin, CA.  VCG has facilitated many of GBI’s award winning projects.  In addition, Mr. Jim Eisenhart has worked internally with GBI to institutionalize their efforts for World Class teamwork and success.  Mr. Eisenhart was featured on GBI’s website and said, “Over the past 21 years I have worked as a partnering facilitator with the vast majority […]

The Metro Rail Exposition Corridor, Phase 2 – Kickoff

On October 4th & 5th, Mr. Jim Eisenhart worked with the Skanska-Rados Expo 2 Joint Venture & LA Metro team on the $547 million design-build project with the Expo Line Construction Authority to construct a seven-mile light rail extension from Culver City to Santa Monica.  The owner and operator of the line is the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (METRO). Parsons Brinckerhoff will provide design services as a subcontractor to the […]

Neal Flesner Presents at Caltrans District 7 RE Meeting

On October 5th, 2011, Mr. Neal Flesner of Ventura Consulting Group worked with a group of 100+ Caltrans District 7 Resident Engineers and Structures Representatives at the District 7 Headquarters in downtown Los Angeles.  The discussion included the value of having a World Class Team on Caltrans projects, partnering best practices and implementing partnering with your contractor on your next project. Mr. Roger Banos, Project Engineer & Supervisor for Caltrans […]

Innovative Lodi Energy Center Project Charging Ahead

The $452-million Lodi Energy Center (LEC) natural gas power plant project is progressing well and is on track for completion in June 2012, according to sources at the Northern California Power Agency (NCPA), a joint‐action agency serving public power entities in Northern and Central California.  The project, which is under construction on 4.4 acres of land in Lodi, will generate 280 megawatts of power once complete.  “We’ve experienced a few […]

Inland Empire Transportation Management Center Completed

The Inland Empire Transportation Management Center is designed and constructed to house both Caltrans and CHP personnel and provide intermodal, interregional, interagency traffic management services 24/7 for the Inland Empire region and is the command and control emergency center during major catastrophes, which includes the counties of San Bernardino and Riverside (Caltrans District 8). The Inland Division Dispatch for CHP is co-located in this facility with the building constructed to […]

The Transpacific Race: Jim Eisenhart & The Crew of The Sauvage

From Jim on July 18th, 2011: Saw top of Moana Loa volcano a half hour ago.   First land in 13 days.  Still 118 miles to Diamond Head and finish.  Should be around noon Honolulu time.  We’re pretty safe in 3rd with a shot at 2nd.  Had our first ’round up’ today in a squall that hit us with 25-30 knot winds and knocked the boat on its side.  Came […]

BIM in Action: St. Jude Medical Center Northwest Tower

“Even though the initial project team functioned at a high level, it can be extremely challenging to maintain that high level as additional people are introduced to the project.  With the continued involvement of Ventura Consulting Group, we have been able to sustain our high level of teamwork regardless of the demanding circumstances we face on a daily basis.” – Marc Howell – McCarthy Building Companies Building on an active […]

I-680 Southbound Express Lane Project Wins IPI Diamond Level Award

San Francisco, CA – On May 19th, 2011 VCG accepted the 2011 John L. Martin Partnered Project of the Year – Diamond Level Award for their facilitation efforts on the I-680 Southbound Express Lane Project.  This $35M Caltrans project was constructed by Bay Cities Paving and Grading.  Bay Cities delivered the project ahead of schedule and without any claims. This was the first HOV Toll lane in California and the […]

Hensel Phelps & Jacobs Completes $54M BEQ for Naval Base Guam – 1st LEED Gold Building

Guam – The design-build team of Jacobs and Hensel Phelps Construction Co. completed the handover of Naval Base Guam’s first LEED — Leadership in Energy and Environment Design — Gold building.  The team encountered a number of challenges, including “a few pieces of ordnance that were discovered, a couple crane challenges that we handled early on, even the discovery of a few armed WWII Japanese remains that we unearthed during […]

LAUSD SRMS#3 & Suffolk Construction Celebrate World Class Teamwork

Last Friday, May 6th, 2011, the LAUSD South Region Middle School #3 and Suffolk Team celebrated their World Class Teamwork & Results with a barbecue hosted by Ventura Consulting Group. VCG hosts barbecues for teams that achieve World Class Teamwork based on self evaluations after their 2nd partnering review workshop. Congratulations to the team and keep up the World Class effort! LAUSD SRMS #3 – World Class BBQ from VENTURA […]

VCG Facilitates SR 99 – Alaskan Way Viaduct & Seawall Replacement

On May 4th & 5th Jim Eisenhart of VCG facilitated the partnering workshop for the SR-99 Alaskan Way Viaduct and Seawall Replacement in Seattle Washington.  The Alaskan Way Viaduct and Seawall Replacement Program includes projects led by WSDOT, King County, City of Seattle, and the Port of Seattle. WSDOT is responsible for replacing the double-deck viaduct, which is part of State Route 99. Seattle is managing the Elliott Bay seawall project. […]

Griffith Company Wins Caltrans Partnering Award

On April 27, the department joined construction industry professionals for the 2011 Caltrans “Excellence in Partnering” awards, which recognizes contractors who put into action what they learned from the Partnering Program to deliver successful highway projects throughout the state. Griffith Co. was recently awarded a Silver Caltrans Partnering Award for the Interstate 10 High Occupancy Vehicle project in Los Angeles County. This $16.2 million project replaced pavement with rapid strength […]

The largest mission ever undertaken by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers may forever change how the nation’s civil works projects are funded and delivered

Paul Crotty with Ventura Consulting Group was contracted to facilitate an alignment and partnering workshop with the senior leadership and project teams of the Inner Harbor Navigation Channel Surge Barrier project along with the Seabrook Gate project. Use of alternative contracting methods like Early Contractor Involvement enhance the opportunities for collaboration, cost savings and improved designs and expedited schedules. While ECI provides a contractual structure for better results, it still […]