Lou Primak, COO and principal of Agate Construction reflected on the construction industry shifts, the lessons learned because of the pandemic.
In February 2020, we shook hands and hugged without hesitation. We packed into convention centers, meeting rooms, restaurants and concert halls — networking, talking, laughing and dancing less than six feet apart.
Then it all went away. In March 2020, as the coronavirus pandemic shut down Nevada and the entire nation, we started bumping elbows instead of shaking hands. We connected via Zoom rather than network in person. We relied on breweries and distilleries for hand sanitizer. We snapped up toilet paper and pasta at breakneck pace. We wore masks when we shopped.
All the while, the business community here was impacted in countless ways, big and small. Some shut down completely, others struggled to reopen, and many more found innovative ways to shift their business model to survive — and some even thrived due to a pandemic-related rise in demand.
One year later, the NNBW fielded responses from more than 20 business owners and executives in Northern Nevada — bars, banks, contractors, developers, Realtors, healthcare providers and more — to find out the biggest lessons they have learned since March 2020, and the biggest differences in how their industry now conducts business.
“Looking at 2020, the important lesson that was reinforced at Agate was our goal to always be prepared for the unexpected. Once the pandemic began, our company leaders prioritized the health and wellbeing of our team members and their families. As essential workers, we understood that every one of our team members had unique situations and we strived to be flexible during those moments. Our team was dedicated to increasing our communication, both internally and to our customers to ensure they received high-quality customer service. The construction industry was put on its ear from a preparation, planning, procurement and fabrication standpoint. Our team focused on our internal processes and controls to ensure we kept on track with timely deliveries and adhered to critical project completion deadlines.”
Read the full feature here One Year Later: Northern Nevada businesses reflect on industry shifts, lessons learned due to the pandemic