Construction is a relationship-based business.
It takes solid connections and networks to move the construction industry forward and generate success in times of great change. No one knows this better than Troy Mayner, Vice President of Scott-Long Construction. We recently spoke with Troy about the relationships he’s built through his career in construction and how they’ve helped him drive progress.
Tell us a little bit about Scott-Long Construction and what you specialize in.
Scott-Long Construction is located in Chantilly, Virginia. We provide general contracting services in, roughly, a 90-mile radius of the Chantilly area. We like to say we are a relationship company, meaning the majority of the work we want to do is with companies we have relationships with. That may be with an owner, a design team, subcontractors, etc. Whoever it is, we pride ourselves on having good relationships. We do a lot of hospital and church work, but really our driver is that we want to work with people that want to work with us.
Walk us through your career and what led you to becoming Vice President?
I graduated from Virginia Tech as a mechanical engineer. When I graduated, I started working for a small general contractor. It was essentially two other guys and me who did just about everything. Later, I moved to Whiting-Turner for about two years. Then I got a call from John Scott and interviewed with him. I’ve been at Scott-Long for a little over 15 years. I started as a project engineer and moved up to Project Manager, then Senior Project Manager, later the Director of Operations, and now the Vice President.
s construction evolves, how do you see your role changing?
The COVID-19 pandemic has driven a lot of progress, especially from the standard of communication. The way we communicate information amongst our team and the subcontractors and the owners has evolved.
That’s one of the reasons we wanted to get into using a platform that we’re able to communicate across all parties with. It’s what really drew me and Scott-Long to the Autodesk Build platform
What project are you most proud of working on in your career?
The biggest and first major project I had with Scott-Long was Patrick Henry College. We did a student life center for them in 2008 and 2009, and I was the Project Engineer on that project. I had a great team and owner and an excellent superintendent to work with. It was a long, difficult project, but it was one that I’ll always remember. I probably gained the most construction knowledge over a short period of time by working on it. And by the end of the project, I moved up from Project Engineer to Project Manager.
We also do a lot of work with Valley Health in Winchester, Virginia. They have facilities all over Virginia and West Virginia. One of our early projects with them was the South Tower renovation which included a renovation over the top and adjacent to occupied spaces. This project required a lot of coordination between the subcontractors and the owners, shutdowns, and relocation of patients.
That was one of the main projects that we did with Valley Health that set us apart from other contractors. We’ve been out at Valley Health for the past 15+ years now.
What are the biggest challenges you face in your role?
Communication is the biggest challenge. We’re in the infancy of using the Build product. We really know the PlanGrid product, but we are at the beginning stages of using it. I would say that with the challenges with communication, there is an opportunity for us to clearly communicate and share documents amongst subcontractors or owners. That way everything is transparent across the entire team and there are no surprises for anybody.
If all that information is there, you don’t get the call from the sub saying, “Hey, I don’t have this document.” They can go on and grab it. The owner says, “Where’s this?” and they can go on and get it. It really saves you a lot of time because all the information is housed in a central location, and you don’t have to have a person there to redistribute the information that already exists.
When you think about the future, what are your plans to advance innovation and productivity at Scott-Long Construction?
It’s morphing the roles of the employees and how they operate. We’ve been discussing the right way to structure any given team internally. It really depends on the project and a lot of different things.
But with the capabilities of the platform, the automated component has already happened, removing all those task-oriented things that people do. Now your employees can focus on figuring out the construction piece of it versus spending time on the paperwork.
What advice would you give to the next generation of men and women entering and preparing for the future of the industry?
Construction has been slow to evolve. When I look at all the technology companies and what they’re doing around us, my takeaway is: don’t always go with the status quo. There’s always a better way to do things. Don’t just let someone shove the idea of “This is the way it’s always been done. This is the way you need to do it.” Don’t let that happen.
Take your freshness and look at everything with a different set of eyes. Speak up and say, “Hey, this is a better way to do it. I don’t know exactly how we get there, but this is a better way. How do we make that happen?”
Want more stories like this?
I regularly interview construction leaders to promote knowledge sharing. We cover what works, what doesn’t, and what the future holds. Check out our entire series of Behind the Build interviews, featuring some of the best in construction.
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