“We shape our buildings, thereafter they shape us.”
“That is the early morning creed we always recited here at AD4 Constructs. AD4 Construct is a global engineering firm that focuses mainly on consultations and building bridges in high-brown areas.”
Mr Kofo the senior manager, just finished his presentation with the senior leadership team and decided to allow the free flow of communication as an ice-breaker into his oral delivery with the new volunteers.
Gab was the curious one, he sat directly in front of Mr Kofo as he chewed his mouth up & down (raising his hands), “I have a question sir, do you mind telling us what a day in the life of a civil engineer is like?”
“Our, or let me speak for myself, my prior experience of this has been theory-based. I think it will be great to have a sneak-view into your daily schedule, thank you, sir. Yes!! chorused Ifeanyi and Taju while nodding their heads in affirmation.”
“As an experienced civil engineer, I will understand your question from two angles. One is what I do on a regular day and two, how I engage with my clients to deliver on the expectations right? Yes!! responded everyone with much enthusiasm, this is well-understood.
“I will like you all to see me as your friend!” Said Mr Kofo. Be free and open like Gab, Okay? Yes sir…. Said all the volunteers. Okay, please listen, Civil engineers are the anchor of significant infrastructure construction projects for structures we use every day. This includes roads, railways, bridges, energy and ‘water supply. Are you following? He asked loudly….
“Yes! A normal work day starts at 7 am and ends at 5 pm. I start by drafting large projects, scheduling inspections and going to various appointments. On-site, I inspect current projects underway.
“The job of a civil engineer is to oversee what is being done and ensure that everything meets the code of requirements. Also suggesting areas for improvement in designs.
“Now, let me inform you how I engage with my potential clients.
“In any negotiation, the strategies may change at different stages of the negotiation, the parties have the choice of three strategies which aim to resolve the problem and two others which are not coping ones, i.e they are not ways to face up to the problem and resolve it.
“I will like to teach you all the factors affecting the choice of strategies which are; relative importance to each side of the issue – the substance of the negotiation, time – pressure, relative perception of one’s power, concern over the outcome, fear of conflict. e.t.c
“The yielding strategy is used when one party wants to end the negotiation fast. You are not interested in the substance of the negotiation, yet going through the motions because of other considerations. This strategy has too much of a win-lose result and while useful as a tactic during negotiation, is unlikely to lead to a ‘win-win’ outcome. Sensibly, yielding could only be up to a point. Quick yielding is perhaps even less likely to lead to a win-win result because it sends signals of weakness and non-interest which is likely to make the other party push harder.
Withdrawal from negotiation is an admission of failure unless it is a temporary nature to consult, let passions cool and so on, in which case it is more of a pause than a withdrawal.
“Mr Kofo, at what point do you withdraw from a negotiation”? asked Wale. Is it after the conversation has been pro-longed for months and the still hasn’t been a point for the conclusion? Or do you just go ahead with the conclusion from one party? I’m asking this question, sir, because I researched that most of your projects are from federal agencies in which you have long hours of negotiations lasting from a day to weeks.
“Hmm, I see you have done quite extensive research. I’m thankful for this question because it allows me to zero into more helpful tips. I was going to inform you all about the bridges that move! Eunice the office secretary interrupted. “Sir, we have guests from Zon Limited, their appointment time is in five minutes”. Oh! That’s correct.
“Hello fellows, I will hand everyone over to the table Mr Bayo who is our volunteer lead. During our next session. I will start with the bridges that move. Sir! I’m super excited to learn said Gab.
To be continued!