As good as goals

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The House Company Rodney Ltd won fi ve awards at the 2006 PlaceMakers Auckland House of the Year competition. But the real winners, according to owner and director Hamish McArthur and subcontractors Dave Johnson and Adam Barber, are the company’s clients. 

 

“Clients are on the receiving end of a goal-driven team’s mission that each product carrying our name should be worthy of a gold medal. Our philosophy is that our last job is our best referral,” Mr McArthur says. 

 

This year’s two gold, one silver and two bronze medals join the other fi ve medals the company has won in the past fi ve years. Mr McArthur says the boutique design and building company’s fi rst and unsuccessful shot at this competition in 2001 was a wake-up call for him. “It started me thinking about what we could do to get an award-winning home,” he says. 

 

The BSc Agriculture-graduate-turned-builder consequently penned a list of goals, stating what he wanted the company to achieve and a strategy how to do it, in February 2002. “I wanted to create a profi table business, an environment that would attract clients from referrals arising from our professional and friendly service. 

 

I wanted to create an environment where workers would be suited to the tasks through continuous upskilling, and would enjoy good working relationships. “And I wanted to give clients well-designed and wellbuilt houses with no maintenance issues,” Mr McArthur says. He then translated these objectives into solutions and systems that could be implemented consistently as a daily compass for all decisions. 

 

One of the solutions is that everybody who works for the company will stay abreast of safety, trade and management best practice developments. Supervisors regularly attend courses and seminars. 

 

Specialist guest speakers discuss topical safety and trade issues with staff at scheduled weekly and quarterly meetings. A company newsletter, site meetings, and staff and subcontractor get-togethers ensure that all workers are kept in the information loop. “But we make it our daily business to immediately pass on to our builders and other subcontractors any