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Construction Genius

Apr 27, 2021

Executive leadership roles are challenging but rewarding. It’s a shift from being a player to being the coach. It’s about providing those who report to you with the help they need to do their jobs better. This responsibility is not for everyone, but if it’s your ambition, how can you skillfully navigate into an executive leadership role? 

This week’s podcast episode with Mike Gifford revolves around this topic. Mike shares his personal career journey. He started out as a project manager at PSF Mechanical, and is now the President. PSF is a family owned business, and Mike is not a family member, and he grew in his skills and responsibilities and is now the President. He shares the career path he took and how he is contributing as President. We also talk about scaling the service division of PSF Mechanical and many other important leadership and business insights. 

Tune in to this week’s episode! 

Discussion Points:

0:00 Introduction 
3:05 Growing the service aspect of PSF 
4:32 The primo client is the end-user 
5:40 Building a relationship with the end-user without alienating the GC 
7:48 Mindset difference: Building the business’s service arm vs. executing new projects
11:39 Bringing in the service team to establish an ongoing relationship
14:37 Growing the service division
16:58 Main difference between the construction side and service side of the business 
18:14 Promoting from within 
20:25 Removing divisional lines and keeping people focused 
22:43 Mike’s career path through the business
26:43 The logic in involving a diversity of roles when creating a decision 
31:42 How Mike’s experience in his early days in PSF impact his career trajectory 
37:02 The biggest challenge Mike faced being President 
37:29 Challenge from being a player to being a coach 
39:55 What keeps Mike from rushing back to being a player again 
41:47 Rhythm of accountability
43:53 Giving people opportunities and how Mike’s experience impacted that 
45:50 Advice for those wanting to grow their careers in a family-owned construction business 

About the Guest: 

With more than two decades of manufacturing and HVAC experience and a record of accomplishment as a business owner, Mike Gifford brings to his position hands-on knowledge and a visionary, entrepreneurial mindset. When he joined PSF over fifteen years ago, he saw great potential in special projects and played a pivotal role in evolving the SPTI business unit into an integral aspect of the company’s success. As the company continues to grow, so has Mike's leadership within it. Mike’s focus is on ensuring that PSF maintains its unique culture while building on its customer service foundation to sustain a large client base in a multitude of markets.


Connect with me on LinkedIn. For more podcast episodes, you may also visit my website. Tune in and subscribe to the Construction Genius: A Leadership Master-Class Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher.

Thank you for tuning in!