By Kristen Frisa
Canadian Design and Construction Report special feature
Like many companies, Aquicon Construction began as a small family endeavour, a partnership between two brothers. What makes the company unique is that it has maintained that family-run identity, while growing into a full-scale construction operation.
As a result, says company president Daniel Aquino, clients get the capabilities of a big company to complete large projects, but the teamwork atmosphere that comes from collaboration from all levels of the company. “Every single project, regardless of size, continues to benefit from the direct involvement of our most senior people,” Aquino says.
Having the upper management take part in each project emphasizes the importance of every client. “We are selective in what we take on,” Aquino says, so the business is able to manage and maintain very high standards.
A large part of meeting those high expectations happens in the planning stages, before a project begins. Aquicon considers every aspect of design, safety, community relations, and the build itself before moving forward, and that detail shines through on the success of the finished project.
“In every case, it’s planning that sets successful builds apart from problematic ones,” Aquino wrote on a blog entry on Aquicon’s website.
Clients are increasingly interested in capitalizing on Aquicon’s forethought in the pre-planning aspect of a new build, and are seeking out the company’s unique preconstruction services to make sure they get it right.
“I personally take on most of our preconstruction services along with our senior project managers and estimators,” Aquino says. “It really allows our clients to gain from our experience in budgeting, material selection, and methods of construction.”
He says in the end, it saves the client time and money to go through the preconstruction process.
Planning has been important in the company’s success in the field, but also as a family business. When Aquino took over the company in 2014, he made some changes in strategy and direction. Recognizing the challenges of change before the process began is what Aquino says made the transition easier.
“I believe any transition in a company of our size can be difficult and at times, impossible,” he says. “Being able to transition into what Aquicon is today, I believe is a true testament to the team and culture we have developed here and continue to grow and nurture over time.”
Aquino takes pride in Aquicon’s growth, and it what it stands for. He says he’s wanted to help take the business to new levels since he was a child.
Now he acts as a voice for the company, writing website articles and blog entries that speak to his values as Aquicon’s leader. “In order for this to function the leader needs to lead, each and every day to keep everyone focussed and the message clear,” he says.
All people at the company have an important roles, and are valued for their contributions. Employees reciprocate the respect they receive with loyal employment at Aquicon, sometimes for decades.
“Aquicon has always and will always bring a team approach to all its projects. Each and every member has a valuable position,” Aquino says.
Aquicon’s recent rebranding gives a nod to its past, while showing how it views the future. “I will never forget where we started, but I want our clients to know that we are no longer a simple school builder but a multifaceted construction firm,” Aquino says.