Winning With BIM: Lessons From This Year's World Cup

July 11, 2018 Anne-Mieke Dekker

Europe is leaving the rest of the world behind this year when it comes to soccer and when it comes to BIM. However, there are a few things every BIM modeller from around the world can learn from this year’s World Cup:


1. Don’t forget your training

This may seem obvious, but without training a team doesn't get very far in the World Cup. This became clear during the game between England and Denmark, where the English had clearly practiced their penalties and won gloriously. Following training will make a huge difference in BIM projects as well. Find appropriate BIM or CAD training to make sure you will be winning with BIM!


2.    Designate a captain

Soccer teams have a captain, BIM project teams have a coordinator. Just like a captain, the BIM coordinator or manager gives guidance and leads the team to success. Make sure that there’s someone on your team who keeps an overview and ensures that the communication within the project runs smoothly.


3. Adapt to the phase

Different phases of the game require different ways of playing and working together. Your team needs to adapt, and different team members need to take the lead in different situations. A BIM project also has different phases, in which different information and ways of working are required. Check out this blog to see how you can optimally work together during different phases of a BIM project.


4. Use the right technology

At the World Cup, the video ref and goal-line technology have proven their worth. These technologies provided data that allowed referees to make better decisions. It was even suggested that the quality of the game had improved, with more ‘beautiful’ soccer. With BIM, too, technology helps to gather accurate data needed to make better decisions and improves the quality of the work - resulting in 'more beautiful' beautiful buildings.


5. Collaborate

Unexpectedly, we saw some of the brightest stars in soccer fall quickly during this year’s World Cup, including Argentina, Germany, and Portugal. It became painfully clear that having all the star players on your team is no guarantee of success. If you can’t work as a team, you might as well go home. Also in BIM projects, it’s not sufficient to be a star in BIM modelling. Only by truly collaborating with other parties, can a project be successfully completed.


6. Manage expectations

But how do you collaborate successfully? By making agreements in advance, making a plan and deciding who is going to do what. Who will run where in which situation? Who passes the ball to whom? Who is running to the second pole? Just like in a successful soccer team, a BIM team needs to manage expectations and make agreements in advance. So decide together who will transfer which information at what point in time, in which way and to whom. A BIM execution plan can be a good starting point for managing expectations.


7. Follow the rules

During the World Cup it became clear how difficult it can be to comply with the rules, which resulted in some thrilling penalty kicks. When using BIM content, too, there are various requirements that can be difficult to meet. Don't want to be penalized in your BIM project? Then make sure you work with content that complies with BIM standards such as the EMCS.  


8. The need for speed

Opportunities are created by being faster than your opponent and being able to quickly change direction in a counter: a soccer team must be flexible and fast. Speed and flexibility are equally important in BIM projects. Therefore, you need to make sure you are using tools that allow you to work productively in any project.


9. Take risks

Playing the ball around in the back did not bring Spain far this year. Both in soccer and with BIM, you have to take risks, try out new ways of working together and dare to fail. That is the only way you can move forward. Don’t let the fear of striking out, keep you from playing the game.


10. Keep the goal in mind

Russia and Sweden came quite far during the World Cup thanks to their defensive strategy. Smart, but did it take them to the finals? No. In a soccer match, it is important not to lose sight of the goal: score within 90 minutes and avoid draining your players in thirty exhaustive additional minutes. The same applies to BIM. Make sure that everyone in your team keeps the goal in mind: to realize successful buildings within the planned time, without wasting your valuable resources.


11. Finally, do not give up!

If there is one thing we have learned from the Belgians at this World Cup, it is about not giving up. Even after standing 0-2 behind against Japan, the team won in the very last minute by making the 3-2. If a BIM project is challenging, don't give up, learn from your mistakes and give it your best shot until the very end!  


About the Author

Anne-Mieke Dekker

Anne-Mieke Dekker is a content marketer at Stabiplan B.V., a Trimble company offering BIM solutions for the MEP industry. Her aim is to provide MEP engineers with the right information to optimize their BIM workflow and ultimately realize better building installations.

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