The Builder's Daily: The Dream Team Weighs in on Capabilities and Culture

By Craig Reiss 

This morning, everyone involved with delivering quality new homes woke up 500,000 people short of what's needed to get it done. The labor shortage in residential development and construction is careening toward a point of no return, with too few signs of resolve to stop it, and consequences for all.

In the first of perhaps a never-ending series on Capabilities and Culture, we polled our Dream Team of experts and analysts to help us define just where we are and how we got here, what that says about us, and what we really need to solve to avert the precipice. Here's the beginning of the story they tell.


The Disconnect

Larry Webb, Executive Chairman of The New Home Company, sees our cultural flaws as an industry as underlying motivators for the labor shortage and its consequences.

"The actual workers are truly not treated as trade partners but pieces of an assembly line. Their piecemeal compensation promotes poor quality. There is no relationship between the people doing the work and the end user."



Joan Webb, former Chief Marketing Officer of The New Home Company, argues that a lack of diversity in housing's corporate suites is a singular threat to solutions.

"I believe housing is seen as a legacy blue-collar industry, not one of innovation and change. Compounding this is the lack of diversity in housing leadership. Until the industry better mirrors its customers, creative solutions may be illusive."


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