Courage to Diverge

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”
-Nelson Mandella

Last week, my daughter started a new sport – new for her and new for Natalie and me – lacrosse.  
 
My sisters played it in high school, and my roommates played it in college (there are differences between men’s and women’s lacrosse). I have a lot of learning to do. How to throw a pass, how to cradle a ball, what are the rules, etc. We started “practicing” having a catch this week, and…I have a lot of learning to do.
 
Our kids are trying new things every day and conquering their fears. Fear of heights by climbing a tree and going across the monkey bars. Fear of needles at the doctor’s office. Fear of social situations. Fear of bugs.  
 
But for some reason, when we get older, we start losing the opportunity to conquer fear and demonstrate courage.  
 
We get comfortable with the status quo. We like stability. We don’t want to make ourselves or others uncomfortable. BUT what are we missing out on? What are we not improving? If we can’t push ourselves, who will? If we can’t push our teams, who will?  
 
How will we get better if we aren’t learning something new? If we aren’t getting comfortable being uncomfortable? As Steve Jobs said, “The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.” As leaders, we have to be focused on delivering today, but we can’t lose sight of taking risks and getting ahead of tomorrow. Innovation is leader business, and we are all leaders! We are responsible for leading ourselves, our families, our project teams, etc.  
 
When was the last time you tried something new?   
 
What’s stopping you? What are you waiting for?
 
If you are stuck, personally or professionally, let’s talk. I’d love nothing more than to help push you to break through the status quo. Don’t be shy…even if it has nothing to do with what our team does at MCFA. Our WHY at MCFA is Inspiring People & Places. Sometimes we need a little dose of confidence and another perspective to break through.

BJ Kraemer, President

Inspiring People & Places: Episode 5

Title: The World’s Most Interesting Person in Infrastructure Finance – Advisor to Presidents, Princes & Public Agencies

Episode Summary: In the following interview, BJ sits down with Jill Jamieson, President & CEO of Illuminati Infrastructure Advisors. They discuss Jill’s amazing path to becoming an internationally recognized expert on Infrastructure Finance & Public-Private Partnerships.

Host: BJ Kraemer, MCFA

Special Guest: Jill Jamieson, Illuminati Infrastructure Advisors

Click here to listen on iTunes.

Click here to listen on Spotify.

Click here to listen online.

Episode Resources:

The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff

FACT SHEET: The American Jobs Plan

MCFA Welcomes New Team Member Colin Mottola

Please join me in welcoming Colin Mottola back to the MCFA family!  

As one of MCFA’s first interns in 2016, Colin is coming back after finishing up his education at Penn State and spending the last 3 years with The Norwood Company.  While at Norwood, Colin served as a Project Engineer and worked on a multi-phased hospital expansion project to add 60 intensive care rooms, a three-story atrium, and renovated operating rooms. In addition, he coordinated deliveries, invasive work, and shutdowns with the hospital staff to ensure minimum impact to staff and patients. In this position, he was also responsible for managing RFIs, submittals, and buyout of trades; assisting in creating and maintaining the project schedule; participating in weekly BIM meetings to help coordinate the installation for all MEP trades. Mr. Mottola’s skills include Bluebeam, ASTA PowerProject, BIM, AutoCAD, and Microsoft Office, along with OSHA 30 HR and ICRA 8 HR training.

Colin earned a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University.  He will be supporting our Construction Management program, as well as a number of upcoming CM/PM opportunities.

When not at work, Colin enjoys golfing and cheering on the Penn State Nittany Lions and Philadelphia Eagles every weekend. Colin is also an avid lacrosse fan, playing from the time he was in 3rd grade to 4 years of club lacrosse at Penn State. He most looks forward to family vacations in Lewes, Delaware and just welcomed a lab/shepherd puppy into the Mottola family!

MCFA is confident that Colin will be a valuable asset to the company and our project teams.  

Welcome back, Colin! 

Inspiring People & Places: Episode 4

Title: Paying it Forward with Wes Guckert, Founder and CEO of The Traffic Group

Episode Summary: In the following interview, BJ sits down with his friend and mentor, Wes Guckert. Wes is the Founder & CEO of The Traffic Group, one of the nation’s leading traffic engineering, transit, and transportation planning firms. He is an expert in traffic engineering and transportation planning – a technical adviser in traffic analysis, traffic signal design, traffic circulation, access studies, automated and robotic parking systems, and transit planning. Since founding TTG, Wes has played a major role in more than 8,000 projects; directing the design and implementation of traffic access systems throughout the United States and internationally, from Canada, Mexico, and the Bahamas, to Indonesia, Dubai, South Africa, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and China.

Host: BJ Kraemer, MCFA

Special Guest: Wes Guckert, The Traffic Group

Click here to listen on iTunes.

Click here to listen on Spotify.

Click here to listen online.

Episode Resources:

Pay It Forward

Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story by Dr. Ben Carson