Hainan 5th June 2013
Back in China…Interesting site meeting today; one where the cultural gap can be really quite wide! Local culture meets international experience…We come together about once a month as the pace of this particular project has picked up with the aim to fast track completion in the next 12 months. That’s where you start to see little “cracks” appear as everybody defends and fends for his or her little kingdom of responsibilities. The them and us approach. Obviously everyone wants to come out on top with their responsibilities (at least let’s assume that!), so you fight for the info you need to produce the deliverables required within the agreed time frame. And that’s where it can get tough as the time schedules are not necessarily aligned! The site team seems to work along one time line (contractor signed off on a construction schedule that he needs to keep to avoid possible late penalties), while the design team work along their own agreed schedule. The reality is that the design schedule is very much dependent on the approval process. We can agree on a 3 week turn around for instance for a conceptual design, but if the owner then does not like it or keeps changing elements as you go along that impacts on all consultants along the line! Reworking, modifying and amending a design takes time; and with that all related disciplines! Somehow contractors working tight schedules on site do not have a very high understanding nor great sympathy for this design process.
So today we found ourselves battling local electrical contractor and procurement managers all wanting to move forward with their little kingdom tasks, blaming the designers for holding them up, while we still need to do our final presentation for approval to the client! There is nobody really at fault, it’s just that there are two worlds that do not necessarily appreciate, understand (or want to understand) each other. Who is King? Sounds like Game of Thrones!
Light Watch 4-99: Lighting is king certainly when it comes to shooting movies and the Game of Thrones demonstrates that every episode!