, The Biggest Mistakes People Make Building a Wood Fence, Building Wrestling

People build fences everyday and most are built correctly but most could also be built a little better. By applying the little known tips below you can build a fence that will last longer and look better.

You start a fence by making holes spaced about every 8 feet apart for the 4x4x8′ treated posts. These holes should be dug 2 feet deep with a post hole digger. Most people stop right there with a cylinder shaped hole since digging these holes is the most strenuous part of fence building. To ensure the post is well anchored the fence installer should use the post hole digger at an angle around the whole diameter of this hole to make a ball shaped anchor at the bottom of the cylinder. A post hole dug in this manner is much more secure and stable.

Another mistake people make is not realizing the fact that wood never sticks to concrete. Drive by any concrete job and you will notice they use wood forms to frame the concrete held up by nails and wood stakes. The next day the concrete workers take the nails out and these wood forms just fall off of the concrete. Another problem is bugs and water in the soil can deteriorate the wood posts. To prevent these problems the fence builder should put black roof tar on the bottom two feet of the fence post that enters the ground. This will prevent the post from rotting and enables the concrete to stick to the posts.

After the posts are leveled and set you should allow them to dry for one whole day before nailing on them. If you start nailing on them before the concrete is completely set you will knock the posts out of level.

Many people build a fence with only two rails to nail their fence slats to. To build a secure fence that will last for years, three rails should be used. The top rail should be placed on the top of the fence posts lying in a horizontal position. The fence slats should not be installed more than 8″ above this top rail. If so they will tend to twist and turn with age. The bottom rail shouldn’t be more than 8″ above the bottom of the fence slats for the same reason. The center rail should be placed evenly between the top and bottom rails. Although the top rail is placed in the horizontal position the middle and bottom rail should be placed vertically. This will prevent these rails from warping and makes a far better looking and stronger fence.

Ask any roofer about water drainage and he will tell you that water always goes in one direction – and that is down. He is almost correct but he doesn’t understand the lip or linger factor. There is one instance where water can and will travel up, and every fence builder should be aware of. This is also the reason why fascia boards almost always rot and warp.

Have you ever walked by a house with wood siding or a wood fence and noticed the bottom of the painted wood is bubbling and rotten? The paint or wood sealer should have protected the wood from moisture to prevent it from rotting however the installers weren’t aware of the lip or linger factor.

Many contractors never seal the bottom lip of the wood. Over the years as water drains down the face of the wood it lingers on the exposed bottom lip and begins to soak up into the wood causing it to rot.

If you want to water seal or paint your new fence, always be certain to coat the top and bottom lip.

, Team Building With Scavenger Hunts, Building Wrestling

You Can Use a Scavenger Hunt to Strengthen and Build Your Team

Being successful in the workplace requires contributions from everyone on the team. A strong team is important to meet company goals and function more efficiently in the workplace. This is why it is important for a team of employees to perform just as they are named, as a team. There are many ways to develop and build a team atmosphere in the workplace. One great way is to sponsor a team scavenger hunt.

What is a Scavenger Hunt?

I am sure you know what a scavenger hunt is, but to refresh your memory, it is merely a challenge to find specific items within a specific set of boundaries. A list of items is given to each team and they are to find the items and return them by a specific deadline. The team that returns with the most items found from their list in the designated time is the winner. Scavenger hunts can be done on an individual basis with one winner or, for the purposes of team-building, can be done in teams. They are a fun way to get your team mates to work together.

Have the Scavenger Hunt In the Office or Outside the Office to Build the Team

You can make the hunt business related by selecting items that relate to your business or market or you can make it more fun and select random items that will be more difficult to find. If you have time to do the scavenger hunt outside of the office it can be even more fun and more challenging.

To do a scavenger hunt in the office, spend a day (possibly on the weekend prior to the event) and hide certain items (or find existing items) all over the office building. Be sure and put them all into a list. You can make it more challenging by adding very specific items on the list, like a paperclip that has a red piece of string tied to it. If you have a tub of paperclips that people go to when they need more, place the string tied paperclip at the bottom of the tub, so it is not easily noticed when glancing in the bin. If there are plants in your office you can put small items, like small glass beads or maybe a push pin into the dirt at the base of the plant. Be sure to be specific on the list of what you are looking for. If you want them to find the glass bead that is in the dirt, list “a dirt covered clear glass bead”. This will make them look for a specific item.

Guidelines for the Team Building Scavenger Hunt

Prior to starting the scavenger hunt, be sure to lay out some general guidelines. Make sure they know what the boundaries are that they should look in. Make sure they understand that the idea is to work as a team to gather the items on their list. You can add additional rules and requirements to force the groups to work together as a team, i.e. everyone must stick together, etc.

Choosing Teams for the Scavenger Hunt

As you begin the scavenger hunt, you may want to assign people to the teams they will be working with. This gives you the opportunity to break up any office clicks that may be in place or to put certain people together that need to grow into a more cohesive team. You can also choose to put participants who are already close on opposite teams to allow them to get to know the other people that are working in their office but that they do not often communicate with. Your teams should be chosen based on your objectives for the scavenger hunt.

Each team will have to decide their strategies and how they will be working together to get the scavenger hunt completed. Regardless of their strategy, they will have to work together to come up with a plan and to execute the task.

Choosing Prizes for your Team Building Scavenger Hunt

You may decide to tell the participants what the prize will be, or to make it more intriguing, do not tell them. Just tell them that they will really like the prize that the winning team receives. The mystery will probably make them work harder towards winning.

The prize for the scavenger hunt should be thought about carefully. You have to make sure that it is something that is desired by the majority of the office staff. It is virtually impossible to please every person with the prize but you can definitely come up with something that most will enjoy. It may be a pizza party that they Management staff throws for them. If it is possible, paid time off is always a great reward. You could offer the winning team a half day off with pay. If time off is not something that is workable due to workload or other reasons, consider other options, like a signed certificate of completion. This should be signed by people that are high up in the company, not just their immediate supervisors. This will hold more meaning if the upper management staff has a part in their recognition. A great reward for all of the participants may be in order as well. You should not tell the teams that they will all be rewarded prior to the finish of the scavenger hunt. This will work as a work against you because it will unmotivate them. If they know they will all be rewarded then they will surely not put as much effort into the task.

Debriefing the Scavenger Hunt

Without any additional input, the activity itself will serve to bond the team together in a fun way that carries over into their work. But you may also wish to have the teams debrief some of the behaviors that take place during the scavenger hunt. While the scavenger hunt is in process, take a look at how the employees are relating to each other. You will definitely be able to see the leadership possibilities in certain employees. You will also see which employees follow directions the best. Many strengths and weaknesses may be revealed and the management staff can make full use of the information that is gained from this exercise. Some strategies and behaviors will be more successful than others.

To bring out these points you might want to have a basic team debrief right after the scavenger hunt is finished. Ask the participants to discuss some of the following questions:

  • What happened?
  • What were the results? Why?
  • What was successful? What could have been done better?
  • What strengths of individuals were discovered? What skills and strengths were not fully utilized?
  • How could you offset or overcome any weaknesses?
  • What could have been done differently?
  • What did you learn about others in the team?
  • How can what you learned about each other be helpful in the workplace?

Benefits of a Scavenger Hunt for Team-Building

Holding an office scavenger hunt is a great idea. Not only will it be a fun break from the day to day responsibilities, but it will provide them the opportunity to practice team work. There are benefits for the participants as well as the management staff. The management staff will be able to observe and to recognize traits in their employees that they may not have realized without the scavenger hunt. The task is office friendly and fun for everyone that is involved.

Need some Ideas?

You can get ideas for specific scavenger hunts from CreativeScavengerHunts.com

, Team Building Ideas and Events, Building Wrestling

Team building is a concept that is rapidly gaining popularity in the corporate world as management realises the importance of happy workers, who all get along well with each other and function within a comfortable work dynamic. Charles Schwab said, “The man who does not work for the love of the work but only for money is not likely to make money nor find much fun in life.” It is therefore important to make the work environment as pleasant and welcoming as possible. Many businesses like to boast of their family feel but very few of them actually practice that approach, preferring the cold formality that has defined the business world so far. Only a lucky few can say that they work in a truly comfortable environment where they feel at home and even look forward to coming to work each morning.

When the dynamic in an office environment is a bit iffy or a team is not working as it should for reasons varying from personality clashes to professional differences of opinion, it may be time to consider a team building time out. Team building events can last from mornings or afternoons only to whole weekends or even an entire week. The duration you opt for and the activities that you choose will depend on the nature of the problems you are experiencing. Perhaps you aren’t experiencing any serious problems at all and only want a fun day out for your staff, or want to do something different for your Christmas party.

There are a variety of reasons why companies might choose team building events, some of these include: to create cross functional efficiency; to ease any changes in management; to increase strategic planning initiatives; assist in culture development and understanding; adds value to a project start up or kick off and many more.

In deciding what activities you think your team should take part in, it is important to understand that team building is an ongoing process and not just a one off event. It is therefore important to have a strategy and to consider the following: 1) with what issues are your team battling? 2) What objectives would you like the team building activities to achieve? 3) Which issues are priorities that need immediate attention? 4) How are you going to plan follow up phases in order to reinforce the messages and make any improvements? 5) Can the principles and objectives be built on in the future, and if so, how?

Team building games or activities are often referred to as interventions, a more grown up term that implies that even though the activities are fun, serious outcomes are intended. If the game requires that the team is split into competing groups it is emphasised that winning or losing is not as important as what is leaned along the way. A selection of some of the games includes:

Toxic Swamp

This game involves the team navigating through some poisonous terrain using limited resources and relying largely on team spirit. To successfully complete this task the team must use ingenuity, creative thinking, problem solving, planning, prioritisation, leadership and, of course, teamwork.

Search and Destroy

In this activity the team must get to a bomb using a terrorist’s booby trapped code, there is the added complication of avoiding competing SWAT teams. Here the team must use dedication and focus on the task at hand, they must also be able to think on their feet and collaborate well together.

Blind Faith

In order to complete this task it is necessary to rescue injured teammates and get them through some difficult obstacles, including a Memory Minefield, which requires the team to learn from their mistakes. The exercise also requires trust and communication.

Crossing the Crocodile River

This exercise involves solving the problem of how to get everyone safely over a raging river without them being eaten by crocodiles or washed away by the strong current. There is the added element of your resources dwindling away if you lose concentration for even a minute. The focus here is on crisis management, team spirit and selflessness. It also highlights the necessity of being flexible in planning in a teamwork project.

The Web

Teams must navigate a 3D web without touching it; members help each other by shouting directions as well as encouragement and offering support when someone touches the web, because then its back to the start for them. This helps improve trust, time management skills, as well as delegation and logical thinking skills.

Reach for the Sky

This is a fun project involving lots of thought, planning and design. Team members must use equipment that is provided and assemble and launch a rocket that will fly on a horizontal plain. The purpose is to fly further than the other teams. The emphasis is on teamwork, collaboration, leadership and goal orientation.

Toxic Waste

This is a small group activity whereby a group is given a bungee cord and a rope and have to figure out how to transport a bucket of “toxic waste” in order to tip it into a neutralisation bucket. This exercise can be used to address just about any aspect of teamwork.

These are only some of the activities that events companies use in their team building days. For something that is more adventurous some companies offer activities such as safaris, bungee jumping, white water rafting, camping, 4×4 drives, rock climbing and so much more. Your options for team building are virtually endless as are the opportunities for fun and learning. And if team building is not what you are after, employees always appreciate a fun day out of the office, whatever the reason.

Recommended site:

http://www.moversandshakers.co.za/teambuilding_other_exercises.html

, Team Building Part 2: Honesty is the Key!, Building Wrestling

The second in a series of 2 articles giving a slightly different viewpoint on effective team building, condensed from an original seminar presented by the author, John Roberts. John is a Freelance Training Consultant and director of JayrConsulting Ltd. Part 1 ( Another Brick in the Wall ) dealt with selecting and building the initial team. Part 2 deals with the culture that need to be in place to run the team really effectively. The ideas expressed are personal opinions built up from many years of experience in the Electronics/Aerospace industry, the Armed Forces, the Telecoms industry and the Training industry. There is no suggestion of this being a 100% solution applicable to or workable in all situations, but it is aimed at getting people to think outside of the norm and question the ‘normal’ way of doing things.

1. Honesty – The Key!

It really is that simple! The basic foundation of building and running REALLY successful teams is TOTAL honesty! Sounds simple, but it can be one of the hardest things to implement due to existing workplace cultures and peoples long-term conditioning to them. If you are not prepared to implement this culture change, you will only ever have functional ‘teams’ that are purely paying ‘lip service’ to the whole idea of team building.

Being honest starts here! You cant pretend to be honest, or only implement some parts of it, either as a team member or as a team leader. If you are not going to give it 100% – Give it up, because the rest depends on this to work properly!

There are two separate parts to honesty within the team scenario and both are equally important:

(a) Being honest with other people

You have to learn to be honest with everyone. If someone is not performing properly-Tell them as soon as possible, and help them to overcome the cause. If someone is performing well-Tell them as soon as possible, and help them to do even better.

If there is good news about the project/team/company-Tell people as soon as possible, without hiding things and deliver praise where appropriate.

If there is BAD news about the project/team/company-Tell people as soon as possible, without hiding things and discuss what can be done about it at a team and personal level-ask for input and ideas to resolve things. Most people can handle most situations well, as long as they feel they are being kept informed and involved.

Make sure that you are doing your share of the teams work, to the best of your ability. If the team are having to cover for you, you are not being honest with them.

If you make a mistake- admit to it, as soon as possible and if necessary get help to resolve it. If you try and hide your mistakes you are not being honest and it just leads to more work for others in the long run.

Don’t perpetuate rumours! It is one of the fastest ways to break down trust in a team culture. If you don’t know something is a fact-don’t repeat it!

(b) Being honest with yourself

For a lot of people this can actually be extremely difficult to achieve, due to long term conditioning in a competitive work place, but once started it tends to build on itself as long as everyone is really committed to long-term success of the team building process. You have to really look at yourself deeply and honestly and work at correcting your individual behaviour patterns and shortcomings.

If you can’t cope with something-tell someone and get some help with it. No one is perfect and we all need help sometimes. In a good team environment, nobody is going to think less of you for requesting help-just the opposite if it helps to get things done.

Be honest about your skills and abilities starting with your c.v. !). If not you will be found out eventually, but by that time, you may have let a lot of other people down!

Don’t steal credit/ideas from other people and put them forward as your own. Any gain for you is only short term and it is one of the quickest ways of destroying trust amongst your team.

Question your commitment and work ethos continually-Are you really giving 100% effort all the time? If not-why not -do you need to seek help or are you just being lazy?

Don’t lie! It’s infectious in a team environment. If you want a day off- take a leave day-don’t keep re-burying your grandmother!

Admit when you are wrong in a discussion-and apologise!

Don’t moan and grumble about work – if you don’t like being there -Leave!

2. Communication

Communication is one of the most important factors in successful teams. To be effective it must be continuous and completely OPEN – both between team members and between the team leader and their team. There should be no secrets. The team need to know how they are affected by corporate plans and decisions. Members need to know if they are doing things correctly. The team leader needs to know if their team members have any ideas or problems that should be acted upon. People respond better if they know the facts – even to bad news! (I had a team where they all volunteered to take a 10% pay cut to save a team member from redundancy, when the financial figures were explained to them openly!)

This DOESN’T mean that you need to have interminable ‘formal’ team meetings! People should be encouraged to talk to each other and to the team leader all of the time. A good team leader will set aside time every day, (YES, you can do it, if you are organised!), purely to get around and talk to their team. The better your communication is, the less meetings you will need to have!

3. Trust

Trust between team members and between the team and team leader MUST be absolute. If you don’t trust people to get on and do their job – why are they in your team? If you trust people to do a job, you have to relinquish power to them to make their own decisions – and they have to be responsible for those decisions! Team members must have trust in the team leader – that they have their best interests at heart and are working for team rather than individual success. In the ultimate team, people have to depend on each other for their lives – that can only be done with trust in your fellow team members.

4. Conflicts and Compromise

Teams are made of PEOPLE! You have to expect conflicts and confrontations. They should not be arbitrarily stamped upon – people have to be made aware that at some point they will have to compromise with other people in order to continuing functioning as an effective team. Members should be encouraged not to hide conflict, but to work it out and arrive at a compromise. The team leader should try and be aware of any conflicts and help to resolve them where necessary. Don’t expect your team to never argue – they are all different people, and just like in a family, there is nothing wrong with a healthy argument, as long as it is resolved

5. Chinese Councils

ALL team members should have an input to planning and decisions concerning the team. People in the team should be treated as equals. The team leader is not in that position because they are ‘better”, it’s just that they have different skills to the others. The team leader is not the only person that may have good ideas and should always be willing to accept input from others and where necessary amend plans and decisions concerning the team and its objectives. However, everyone should be aware that at the end, the team leader has the ultimate responsibility and therefore the final say in any decisions, having taken into account the input from other team members. This should be a regular ongoing procedure.

6. Assessment and reward

Forget ‘Annual Assessments’, Competency grids and pay rises based on individual performance! What matters is, “Is the TEAM successful?” The team leader should be constantly aware of how team members are performing and giving them feedback and assistance where necessary as the project progresses. It is no good leaving it until some later point to let people know if they are not achieving what is required or patting them on the back if things are going well. People need constant feedback -with honesty!

Reward should be based on the success (or failure!) of the whole team, not individuals, so that people are encouraged to make sure that everyone in the team is pulling together to achieve the team goals -not trying to score ‘smarty points’ for their own individual advancement. (This would not work in a ‘sales’ environment, which is why sales people tend to work as individuals rather than as teams!)

7. Buddies

Team members must all be ‘Buddies’ with each other. This doesn’t mean that you have to be close friends or socialise with each other! What it means is that team members have to support one another at all times. Everyone has ‘off days’, and team members should notice when someone else is not performing 100% and offer help and support to get them through this period. Sometimes all it will take is a joke or remark to buck someone up or they may need help with a particular task that is getting on top of them. All members should get into the habit of ‘watching out’ for each other. There is no shame in seeking or accepting help – we all need it sometimes. We all have different skills and abilities and team members should be encouraged to make use of each other’s skills to achieve the team objective as efficiently as possible. I was never very good at producing diagrams for presentations, but I had someone in my team who was brilliant at it, and I would always ask her to critique my work so that I could produce a better finished product.

8. No Blame – No Shame

EVERYONE MAKES MISTAKES! The secret is to have a culture where people are not ashamed to admit to having made a mistake! That way, mistakes can be rectified quickly, and more importantly, learned from! If someone makes a mistake (deletes a file or something), you don’t want them to feel that they will be penalised or marked down in some way. You need them to tell someone and if necessary seek help to rectify it as soon as possible. (Needs ‘honesty’, as above!)

Summary

You may have noticed something in reading the above? No jargon, no ‘hype’, no ‘games’, no ‘exercises’, no ‘concepts’! – NOT NECESSARY! Successful teams are all about PEOPLE, their natural skills, abilities and relationships. Running a successful team is very much like running a successful family and most of the values are the same – BUT, it will not work WITHOUT HONESTY as above! Remember that is probably the hardest thing to achieve due to human nature and the conditioning that people are subjected to in the normally competitive culture of most work places, but it is worth the effort if you really want to achieve effective team building.

Think about all of the above – how much of it currently applies to teams in your workplace? Could you implement this? Remember – unless you start with HONESTY, it will not work, and you will always just be going through the motions of team building!

As always I am completely open to any comments – the whole idea of this seminar is to get people thinking and discussing what they do in their teams and how it could be improved.

Acknowledgements

Adapted from an original article by John Roberts, freelance training consultant, Director of JayrConsulting Ltd., www.jayrconsulting.co.uk. John can be contacted at john.roberts@jayrconsulting.co.uk

This article may be freely reproduced / modified and used in any way, providing this acknowledgement is left in its entirety.

, Ideas for Team Building at Work Meetings and Seminars, Building Wrestling

Team building activities can be hard to execute in work meetings and seminars. In such instances, the primary hurdle that is mostly encountered is the lack of resources. While it’s always easy to foresee this, coming up with a viable solution still remains difficult for some. Here is a set of ideas for team building at work meetings. These are simply suggestive and it would be great if you could improvise on them.

The foremost thing would be to develop a mutual comfort in the relationship between the members. Most people call this ice-breaking, but ice-breaking is a term suited in situations when things are really cold. Even smiling associates need some extra sparks flying between them to let the smiles delve deeper into each others’ hearts. Games like ‘musical chairs’ are apt for such situations.

Next, simple indoor games which are commonly favorites as leisure games can be efficiently used. Mind you, nonsense games must be avoided. Include some Sudoku games, and make them solve a Sudoku as a group. It boosts the team building process, since they are applying brains, working as a team and also competing against each other, not just as groups but also as individuals.

If these seem to be very radical to you, then don’t yet give up on this list of ideas. Take this hardcore activity, straight from the books of management gurus. Assemble the teams/groups. Brief them about the past progress/regress. Give them pamphlets and ask them to interact between themselves and thereby design the procedural course of action to improve upon the past results.

This activity may seem a very succinct form of their daily jobs. But the fact prevails that it would be far too effective, since they are now doing it within a short span of time, say 15 minutes. This implies they must brainstorm & they have extremely less time to analyze too much. This gives them less time to counter each other’s ideas and hence they would bond better. At the end of the activity, their mutual respect would have escalated by considerable margins.

, Design and Build Contracts, Advantages and Disadvantages, Building Wrestling

Anyone who has spent time working in the UK construction industry is likely to have strong opinions about Design and Build contracts. In the immediate future, it’s likely that activity within the sector is going to increase, and whilst the exact political flavour of the Conservative government has yet to be confirmed they have at least promised to invest heavily in house building. With that in mind, the following points highlight some of the thorny issues associated with design and build contracts.

UK House Building

200,000 appears to be the magic number; in March 2015, David Cameron promised to double the target of 100,000 homes aimed at first time buyers, and with his position now confirmed in No.10 Downing Street we wait with bated breath to see if this commitment will reach fruition. Across the UK, firms are experiencing a modest rise in construction projects and reporting a certain amount of confidence. Besides the always-nebulous claims of politicians a range of measures including a loosening of planning laws and assistance for first time buyers is buoying up the industry after last year’s lack of growth. For many developers, however the fact that an increased demand for labour and materials is likely to push up prices can make design and build contracts more attractive.

Design and Build Advantages

Design and Build [D&B] is a useful procurement route for developers in that it allows a certain amount of control over costs. In general, lump sum contracts result in a contractor agreeing to take on the responsibility for both the design and construction of a project for an agreed price. The contractor may have their own team of designers or may engage an outside firm. They will agree a design initially with the developer, but after the contract is signed the contractor will have full responsibility.

If the agreed-on design remains unchanged throughout the project, the developer can be reasonably sure that the overall cost of construction will remain unchanged. Of course, it’s possible that the developer will require some design changes during the project, but it should then be possible for the contractor to provide an illustration of exactly how any such changes will affect overall costs.

Another of the advantages of design and build contracts is the possibility of reduced construction time. If the contractor is entirely responsible for design a great deal of time can potentially be saved as the design and building elements will run concurrently. For developers the main benefit is that, once the contract is agreed the contractor takes on much of the financial risk inherent in a project; that’s increasingly attractive when prices of both labour and materials are looking likely to rise. When various political parties claim that an upswing in construction is just around the corner, it’s worth remembering that it’s not just the taxpayer who will be expected to contribute. The Conservative government will also need to rely on private investment.

Design and Build Disadvantages

Not everyone in the industry is a fan of design and build contracts and it’s therefore worth taking a look at their disadvantages. Those who dislike the system point out that if a builder is given a free hand to design a building based on a pre-agreed price, even if costs don’t rise during the project they will be likely to work to the lowest possible specifications [if the contract allows them to alter the specifications].

Secondly, there’s an inherent problem in that builders are not architects. An architect, as well as having years of training and a very specific set of skills not least aesthetic ones, will be up to date with both the legal and design requirements. There are also requirements that may not be written into law but will be at the cutting edge of what makes a building fit for purpose now, and years into the future. Giving a builder a set amount of money and most, if not all the responsibility for design is a recipe for a shoddy result, say some people.

Making generalisations about the merits of D&B versus traditional construction methods is dangerous. In the real world, both can and do result in some buildings that are successful and some that are a disaster. For developers, architects and contractors perhaps the most important point is to ensure that the contract whatever form it takes is fully understood by all sides, covers all legal requirements and has the flexibility built into it to allow a satisfactory result.

Construction Management

Recently there has been something of a trend towards construction management rather than design and build contracts. Here, an intermediary in the form of a construction manager is appointed and the developer takes more responsibility for the overall costs of a project. It’s possible, however that if private investors are effectively forced into taking more financial risk the supply of money for the promised housebuilding boom could begin to dry up.

, Different Building Materials for Different Climates, Building Wrestling

Building a new home requires a lot of considerations not the least of which is the materials you will build with. The environment and location of your home plays a major part in which materials and use and where. The aspect will dictate the best place for certain materials as well as which elements will go where. Your architectural designer will be able to assist you with the best place to locate your home and give your recommendations about it should be built of depending on your climate.

Glass is one of the most versatile of building materials as it not only allows light to enter into the building but it also the opportunity for many architectural accents. Glass not allows light to enter but also warmth, however it does not hold heat like other materials so the use of it needs to be countered with complementary materials to ensure your home does not end up cold. Particularly important when you are building in cooler climates.

Concrete is also another diverse product which not only absorbs heat but also releases it slowly as the temperature outside cools down helping to maintain a balance of warmth in your home. It’s a great counter balance to glass and positioning it in your home when the sun can reach it during the day and release it in the evening. The floor is an obvious choice as well as walls that may be subject to strong southerly winds.

Insulation is another vital component of ensuring that your home is perfect for your climate, if you live in a country that has primarily cooler weather ensuring adequate warmth during the winter months is important to the overall comfort of the people who will be living there. Additionally if you live where the weather is primarily hot and sunny having a well ventilated house to allow good circulation of air to keep you cool and your architectural designer will be able to ensure these design elements are included.

Solar Panels being incorporated into your building plans are also something to discuss with your architectural designer, this will be extremely beneficial for houses in warm sunny climates but also for those in other parts of the country as it helps reduce your power consumption by utilising natural resources.

Your architectural designer will be able to recommend many of the best building materials for your section, aspect and climate to maximise the natural assets such as sunshine, and minimise the negative one’s such as wind.

, Bodybuilding Without Steroids, Milo Secret To Building Strong Muscle, Building Wrestling

Bodybuilding Without Steroids, Milo Style! Here’s what it means: if you’re a drug-free weight lifter with average, or worse, lousy genetics like me, then building muscle boils down to this…

If You Are Not Lifting More Weight Today Than You Did 12-Months Ago, Or Even Four Weeks Ago… Then You Are NOT Building Muscle!

You can bench press or shoulder press a Kettle Bell with 40 lbs in each hand until you turn blue in the face… but the person who benches presses 275 lbs or barbell shoulder presses 125 lbs will always have a bigger chest and more muscular shoulders than you, why? because they are lifting heavier weights!

Here’s the basics of bodybuilding without steroids, Milo style, for building lean muscle…

Free Weights. Machines balance the weight for you which leaves your stabilizing muscles weak. Free weights force you to balance the weight yourself which strengthens your stabilizer muscles and allows the body to develop real strength.

Compound Exercises. Lifting heavy objects always engages several muscles. If you want to build stronger muscles you must use exercises that incorporate more muscles – Dead-Lifts, Squats, Bench Press, Over-head Press and others.

Barbells. I see LOTS of people at the commercial gyms using machines because It’s a comfortable and easier way to exercise. Milo Bodybuilding uses barbells because you can lift the most weight and progress more easily.

Pyramid Reps. You can use more weight if you stagger the reps and weight. This allows the different muscle fibers to be stimulated and developed. The end result is a more perfectly developed muscle that is as strong as it looks.

Frequency Of Training. If you weight train (with real progressive effort) to often you’ll burn out. If you don’t train often enough your muscles and body-fat content will never progress to what you want it to be, your goal. Milo Bodybuilding is all about putting together the correct combination for optimum growth and health.

Most Productive Exercises are:

Free Weight Squats

Dead-Lift

Bench Press

Over-Head Press

Bent-Over Barbell Rows

Barbell Biceps Curl

Barbell Close-Grip Bench Press – Triceps

Standing Calf Raise.

If you use these select compound muscle exercises in a system that allows you to lift heavy and safely, eat plenty of nutritious foods and get ample sleep, your muscles will have no choice but to grow stronger, bigger and much leaner!

It’s Monday so remember to look over your short and long-term goals, get your mind into what you want to accomplish this week and don’t make excuses not to do it. A winner never quits and a quitter never wins!

, Building a Professional Career Online, Building Wrestling

The Internet has become one of the vital components of our daily lives. It is not hard to admit that most of our daily activities in life have been touched by the World Wide Web. With that, it is no surprise that a growing number of individuals are already exploring — some enjoying the benefits of having a professional career online, a lucrative and rewarding career right at the comfort of a coffee shop or in their home office in front of their computer.

Creating a professional career online is now possible, thanks to the convenience the internet provides. One can easily start a career in buying and selling stuff online or by simply creating a blog or engaging in freelance writing. There are many careers available online. Here are some of the following careers you can look into online.

Freelance writing

Blogging

Ghost Writing

E-Commerce

Programming

Website Design

Video Editing

Photography

Find a career that suits your set of skills best and then start creating your online portfolio to get clients and projects to start with. It is advisable to get a reliable internet access, one that runs at least 2MBPs or more to be able to attend to your daily activities on the internet. A lower speed may prove to be stressful when trying to meet and beat deadlines as well as when updating online templates and doing web design. Anything less also fails to meet requirement of clients and freelancing websites. Thus trusted home phone and internet bundles will help make your online freelancing career even more feasible.

Here are some of the tips you can follow to start and build a professional career online.

Create an online portfolio

Before finding clients and trying to land a job online, you need to create an online portfolio. It can be your Name.com or a blog under a free hosting platform like Weebly, Blogger, or WordPress to begin with. Include credentials, training, sample works, and a few details about yourself in this page. This can be a simple website with a few pages attached where potential clients can download and read samples of your work. A contact page is also essential.

Build your connections

You have most likely met a colleague who also happens to work online. You can include him as one of your references on your online portfolio. You can also add your past managers and supervisors as references. Be sure to inform your colleagues about them being one of your trusted references online. You can also include testimonials from past clients as well as their contact information to be able to provide your potential clients a reliable source of firsthand information about you and your performance as a professional online freelancer.

It is also important to keep in touch with your past clients from time to time to be aware of possible projects that may be available for you to do.

Update your social media accounts

Social media is also a big factor in building your career and connections online. LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter are just some of the social media sites you should have to be able to build credibility and your authenticity as a real individual working online. LinkedIn is a very good source of connections as well so you must really take advantage of the feature it offers. If you would want to keep your Facebook and Twitter feeds private, it would be advisable to have a separate Twitter account or a Facebook page for your business or brand. Past clients can post comments and testimonials in these social media pages as well.

Utilize marketing strategies

Take advantage of the free marketing strategies on the internet for your online business and online services. Post feeds on your social media accounts. Submit guest posts to increase your presence online, write press releases and publish them on free PR websites. Join forums and Q&A websites and the likes. The more you expose yourself and your brand online, the higher are the possibilities of getting clients and projects.

Advertise your business

As you see your business grow, you tend to meet competitors along the way. Advertise your business to create an edge over your competitors. Target your market well and utilize the right keywords to be able to make your business more visible and on top of search engines. This may take time but with the right strategies, you can practically be a preferred choice over similar professional services if you market your business well.

, How to Move a Steel Building, Building Wrestling

Depending on the size and design of the steel building there are two options for moving it. Larger steel buildings sealed to a foundation will need to be disassembled and reassembled, while smaller steel buildings may be able to be moved short distances in one piece. Either way, moving a steel building 50 feet or 500 miles requires a lift and a skilled lift operator; if it’s being moved any significant distance an 18-wheeler will be required.

It is possible to move smaller steel buildings like sheds or small garages without disassembling it. If a smaller building is being moved a short distance, say from one end of a property to another it can actually be slid. The process begins by carefully raising the front of the steel building with a lift and sliding wood under it to act like a stand and then again repeating this process on the back to the building. Then, by attaching a towrope to the wood beneath the building, the steel structure can be towed from one place to another.

While this method is much less costly than disassembly and reassembly it’s also more risky. Uneven movement can cause bending and warping that can damage or destroy the structural integrity of a steel building. An advisable, but not surefire method of preventing flexing is to reinforce the skids by attaching 2×4’s cut to the width the building to the skids creating a sort of frame. In the end the building can be towed on the skids by a truck; much like a child being slid through the snow on a sled by his parents.

If the building needs to be moved further then it can be raised up by the lift from the 2 until a truck is able to move below it at which point the lift can lower the steel building or shed onto the bed of the truck. The truck can then relocate the building and then again a lift and raise and lower the steel building onto its new property.

Moving a larger building is much more complex because it involved breaking down a building into its basic components, transporting the components, and then reassembling them back together. The most important part of breaking down a building is organization. Improper deconstruction can create costly expenses in the form of lost or damaged parts. It’s highly highly recommended that skilled laborers be hired to ensure the structural integrity of the steel building is protected through all phases of the moving process.

Breaking down a building is essentially done in the reverse order of constructing one. Remove the trim and accessories, then the roof and wall sheeting, then the framing. A new foundation with the appropriate anchor bolts will need to be prepared at the new location. Once all of the components are moved from the original location to the new location the reconstruction process can begin as if it were a brand new building. High-quality buildings will be easier to move because their components will be able to better withstand the wear and tear of being taken apart and put back together. Also, pre-welded clips on buildings will speed up the entire process and prevent the loss of loose bolted clips during the move.