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CDT

2 min read

Peopleverse 006: Jeffrey Potter

Jeffrey Potter graduated from North Dakota State University in 2013 and started his specifications career in 2015 at HMC Architects. It didn't take long for Jeff to fall in love with specifications and the world of architecture, ultimately becoming the...

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2 min read

Peopleverse 004: Cherise Lakeside

Cherise Lakeside, FCSI, CDT is a Senior Specification Writer at RDH Building Science in Portland, Oregon and has experience with many facets of the project team in the built environment. She has worked mostly in architecture with stints in construction,...

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2 min read

Peopleverse 006: Jeffrey Potter

By Evan Troxel, AIA on May 4, 2022 7:00:00 AM

Jeffrey Potter graduated from North Dakota State University in 2013 and started his specifications career in 2015 at HMC Architects. It didn't take long for Jeff to fall in love with specifications and the world of architecture, ultimately becoming the head specifier at HMC Architects in 2020. Jeff is currently working at Deltek as a Specifications Solutions Product Manager helping shift the industry towards a revolutionary approach to specifications.

In this episode we discuss:

  • Jeff’s unique path to becoming head specifier in an architecture firm
  • Jeff’s story about how came to love spec writing after starting in the industry with no experience
  • whether or not the specification process has changed over the past few decades
  • the challenges and outcomes of updating the tools and specifications process in architecture firms today
  • the problem Jeff is helping to solve in regards to specifications in his new role
  • whether or not the current specifications process is ‘broken’ 
  • how data analysis and data-driven decisions could help in the specification process
  • what traits make for a good specifier in a firm
  • how specifiers can help everyone in an office understand what is in a spec
  • a discussion about the path to wider adoption of ownership of the specification by the team building the BIM model
  • insight into the day-to-day of being a specifier at a large firm
  • how integrating specification writers into the project team earlier in the design process drives better project outcomes
  • examples of challenges involved in updating a spec process
  • some lessons learned from Jeff’s implementation of ‘scope of work meetings’ and ‘level of expectation meetings’ as a specifier
  • Jeff’s personal addition of a fifth ‘C’ to the four C’s of CSI
  • some issues Jeff has observed with public bid projects (design-bid-build) from a specifier’s point of view
  • the superpowers that building product experts can use in the design process to deliver value to the design team 
  • the importance of specifiers and product reps understanding that the design team, in many cases, is thinking in terms of assemblies rather than individual products and what Jeff calls an ‘assembly mindset’
  • the idea of a specification and data-driven recommendation engine for building products
  • the importance of mentorship, knowledge capture, and knowledge transference from experienced spec writers to emerging professionals
  • why Jeff recently chose to transition his career from being a specifier at an architectural firm to a specifications solutions product manager
  • why someone should consider becoming a specifier
  • how technology can help obtain more efficiency, productivity, and accuracy in specifications
  • Jeff’s vision of the future of specifications 
  • Jeff's message for the building industry
Topics: podcast peopleverse specifications specifier CSI CDT
3 min read

Peopleverse 004: Cherise Lakeside

By Evan Troxel, AIA on Apr 6, 2022 6:00:00 AM

Cherise Lakeside, FCSI, CDT is a Senior Specification Writer at RDH Building Science in Portland, Oregon and has experience with many facets of the project team in the built environment. She has worked mostly in architecture with stints in construction, MEP Engineering, and now building science during her career.

In this wide-ranging episode we discuss:

  • Cherise’s journey to Senior Specification Writer at RDH
  • being heard in a traditionally male-dominated profession
  • creating processes for successful specifications on projects that encourage the team to start project specifications sooner
  • the scarcity of the role of a trained Specifier
  • the current state of specifications in the industry
  • the actual role versus the perception of a Specifier
  • how Specifiers bridge the gap between supply and demand
  • the current challenges our industry is facing in the gap
  • the importance of relationships between supply and demand
  • the problems that the lack of understanding of other roles on a project lead to
  • the issues of blindly copying & pasting risk into a firm’s project specification
  • what the supply side needs to understand about design professionals to be more effective
  • the importance of a properly written specification
  • why it’s a problem to put warranty requirements in part 3 of the specification, and where they actually belong
  • the problem of dictating means and methods in specifications
  • correct locating information in the contract documents versus simply throwing everything in the spec with “CYA language”
  • the importance for the supply side to understand the project context a design professional is operating within
  • the problem of ill-timed information delivered at lunch n’ learns
  • insight into the specification writing process during design
  • the one thing that drives design professionals and specifiers insane about manufacturer’s websites
  • the thing product manufacturers know better than anybody and why they are an undeniable resource
  • how product manufacturers can make valuable connections inside architectural firms under current circumstances (offices reopening)
  • what certification product reps can use to get in the door faster than those without
  • what attributes define a quality specification for design professionals
  • the opportunities and benefits of designing a modern specifications workflow within a firm
  • the necessity of creating a feedback loop via lessons learned throughout construction to increase the efficacy, reliability, and quality of office standard documents
  • and other topics
Topics: podcast peopleverse specifications specifier CSI CDT