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Training and education at Lusardi Construction Co.

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The key to Lusardi Construction Co.'s success has always been our people, and we continue to believe our people are the best in the industry. So that our employees may sustain their knowledge of construction and continue to grow, we invest considerable time and money to provide a program of continuing education and training. On the field side, our superintendents and foremen are homegrown, so they are intimately familiar with Lusardi principles, techniques, and systems. All of our superintendents have been with the company for at least 10 years, most of them more, and have come up "through the ranks". For the superintendents to continually maintain the level of quality and aggressive schedules for which Lusardi is known, a highly skilled and motivated work force must support them. Following are some of the methods by which we train and educate our field personnel and help them grow professionally: Lusardi conducts monthly leadership classes for those field workers who have demonstrated potential as future leaders. These classes provide the tools needed for the detailed technical knowledge of our construction processes and the effective management of our in-house work crews. A labor committee monitors our field employees' development by utilizing a detailed skill and experience-level tracking system, including a summary of job experience and progression of learning skills. The state-approved carpentry apprentice program is utilized by those who desire to attend. Project assignments are predicated on allowing our workers to learn different methods and techniques whenever such flexibility is warranted, so that they experience tilt-up, structural steel, masonry, and other types of building procedures. This carefully administered placement of personnel allows us to meet our performance standards while providing the individual with well-rounded training and an effective path of leadership development. Lusardi's skills classes, which are attended by both our field leaders and project management personnel, feature key subcontractors speaking about their trades, typical problems encountered in plans, and recurring field installation challenges, as well as how Lusardi can make their work experience more productive and positive. Weekly safety meetings with all jobsite personnel are mandatory, wherein pertinent safety matters are discussed including hazardous material information where appropriate. In addition, our in-house safety manager frequently conducts job-site safety visits and discusses myriad safety topics. Safety orientations are provided for all new employees. Our safety manager and other external professionals frequently conduct forklift, first aid/CPR, trenching & excavation, fall protection, scaffolding, powder-actuated tool, and safe driver training for our field personnel. Lusardi has an extensive mentoring program wherein superintendents "adopt" field employees and work with them on a more individualized basis on a project. When the person is reassigned, the same superintendent continues to track their progress, ensuring that they are receiving well-rounded and complete technical and skills training, and that they are always moving forward. On the management side, we start by recruiting our entry-level project managers from leading universities throughout the country, then extensively train and educate them in our own construction management systems developed over the years. This includes going into the field to learn firsthand how we build from our superintendents. Coupled with their own construction experiences while in school, this gives them an excellent basis from which to learn the business. By the time they become project managers, they are well-versed, educated, and experienced in every aspect of construction, including the business end. Currently our graduates represent some 28 universities across the country. We teach our project managers how to understand construction by training them block-by-block in fundamentals, so that they understand the concepts of construction and have an intuitive grasp of the building process and costs. No off-the-shelf estimating packages are ever used. Our goal is for our project managers to become mini-general contractors, and they are. They are fully capable of taking a project from inception through turn-key, and they have the luxury of all of the company officers' expertise and experience from which to draw. Lusardi employees get "their feet wet" early under the auspices of our director of preconstruction services, who initially leads them through the basics of plan reading, estimating, and bid procedures. Weekly training classes, covering every facet of the building process, supplement their on-the-job experiences with their assigned senior PM as a mentor. Training and education, for both our craftsmen in the field and our project management team, are a continuum at Lusardi, and we feel a very important investment to ensure continued growth of our people. This philosophy is an integral part of our system that has served us well for over 46 years.

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