At the beginning of the process, clients work closely with the salesperson, so before construction begins, they need a formal introduction to the lead carpenter. Hold a meeting with the client, salesperson, lead carpenter, and production manager.

Charles Steck

Set up. The meeting should take place a few days before the start of the job to allow for any last-minute changes to the plan.

Sales first. The salesperson should begin by introducing the production staff and stating the purpose of the meeting. Some firms allow the salesperson to leave after this part.

Leading carpenter. By running this meeting, the lead carpenter gains credibility as a competent professional. It also helps promote the relationship with the client.

Use a checklist. Stay on track by following a prewritten agenda.

Review the job. The lead should cover plans, specifications, the schedule, and site concerns. Clients want to know the timing of the demolition and when the kitchen will be working again.

End with a commitment. The meeting should end with a commitment to start on the specified date.

—Tim Faller, Field Training Services,