67 episodes

Soft As Steel Podcast will be a 30-minute weekly show that explores the landscape of the construction industry as it’s changing dynamically. Success is no longer driven by a single generation, technology, or bidding strategy. In today’s diverse industry, your ability to adapt and grow hinges on soft skills.

In the Soft as Steel podcast series, host Dennis Doran engages in deep, dynamic conversations with a broad cross section of subject matter experts and leaders with a principal focus on how the construction industry must bring communication and introspection to an industry where these essential skills traditionally go undervalued.
It's about focusing on that which is not talked about. The reality that the challenges ahead are even greater than those in the past. The qualities, attributes, and behaviors of people essential to building meaningful relationships and enjoying success and happiness are vital to all endeavors and all industries. That having deep, meaningful discussions; with stories about the vital role of soft skills in every facet of work and life; by talking about things like love, inclusion, social justice, leadership; like talking about addiction, mental health, and suicide. This message is the foundation of the podcast - Soft Skills Matter more than ever.

Soft As Steel Dennis Doran

    • Business
    • 4.8 • 5 Ratings

Soft As Steel Podcast will be a 30-minute weekly show that explores the landscape of the construction industry as it’s changing dynamically. Success is no longer driven by a single generation, technology, or bidding strategy. In today’s diverse industry, your ability to adapt and grow hinges on soft skills.

In the Soft as Steel podcast series, host Dennis Doran engages in deep, dynamic conversations with a broad cross section of subject matter experts and leaders with a principal focus on how the construction industry must bring communication and introspection to an industry where these essential skills traditionally go undervalued.
It's about focusing on that which is not talked about. The reality that the challenges ahead are even greater than those in the past. The qualities, attributes, and behaviors of people essential to building meaningful relationships and enjoying success and happiness are vital to all endeavors and all industries. That having deep, meaningful discussions; with stories about the vital role of soft skills in every facet of work and life; by talking about things like love, inclusion, social justice, leadership; like talking about addiction, mental health, and suicide. This message is the foundation of the podcast - Soft Skills Matter more than ever.

    Steve Griggs: Straight Dirt

    Steve Griggs: Straight Dirt

    In this episode of the Soft as Steel podcast, host Dennis Doran talks with Steve Griggs, a seasoned landscape designer, about the significance of soft skills in the construction industry. Steve emphasizes the value of hands-on leadership, personal accountability, and the joy of creating beautiful landscapes. He discusses the importance of respect, integrity, and effective communication, as well as the challenges of imparting these skills. The conversation also touches on societal challenges, the role of thought leadership, and the necessity of continuous self-improvement. Steve's commitment to excellence and passion for his work shines through, providing listeners with insights into successful leadership and entrepreneurship.

    • 38 min
    Shelley Armato: Be a Kind Disrupter

    Shelley Armato: Be a Kind Disrupter

    In this episode, host Dennis Doran speaks with Shelley Armato, CEO and co-founder of My Smart Plans. Shelley discusses the creation of her software service as a response to the chaos and lack of accountability in the construction industry. She emphasizes the importance of communication, transparency, and data-driven decision-making in improving project outcomes. Despite resistance, Shelley's company is gaining traction, with projects like Fresno International Airport and international expansion to Guam. She shares a personal story of confronting Turner Construction and her philanthropic work, including supporting a refugee family and volunteering at City Union Mission. Shelley is determined to revolutionize the construction industry, ensuring projects are completed efficiently and without post-completion issues, ultimately benefiting the country's infrastructure.

    • 35 min
    Chris Scheiblein: How to Extend a Helping Hand

    Chris Scheiblein: How to Extend a Helping Hand

    Dennis Doran talks with Chris Scheiblein, an employee assistance professional from the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades Helping Hands Program. They discuss the critical issues of mental health, addiction, and suicide in the construction industry, highlighting the need for support, education, and a culture of compassion and inclusivity. Chris shares his personal recovery journey and his work in promoting behavioral health assistance, emphasizing the importance of understanding cultural and generational differences to foster empathy. They explore the progress in reducing stigma and the ongoing need for industry-wide education to normalize conversations around mental health at job sites. The episode underscores the significance of love, inclusion, and social justice in creating a supportive labor movement.

    • 30 min
    Cathy Dolan-Schweitzer: Humor and Teflon - Ingredients For Success

    Cathy Dolan-Schweitzer: Humor and Teflon - Ingredients For Success

    In this podcast episode, Dennis Doran interviews Cathy Dolan-Schweitzer, President of Health Well Done, about her unique approach to leadership in the construction industry. Cathy, who started as a special education teacher and transitioned to construction project management, emphasizes the importance of soft skills, team-building, and putting people first—especially in healthcare projects. She shares insights from her experience at Stanford Hospital and her book, advocating for a patient-first philosophy. The conversation also touches on the need for diversity, mentorship, and conflict resolution in the industry, as well as the value of loving one's work for success.

    • 35 min
    Barb Allen: Sidelining Unconscious Bias

    Barb Allen: Sidelining Unconscious Bias

    In this episode of the Soft as Steel podcast, host Dennis Doran talks with Barb Allen about her 26-year career in construction. Starting as an apprentice carpenter, Barb rose to become a success coach and gender diversity consultant. She shares her struggles with resistance and bullying as a woman in a male-dominated field and her efforts to overcome unconscious biases. Barb and Dennis discuss the industry's progress in diversity and inclusion, the importance of male allies, and the need for respectful workplace conditions, highlighting the significance of clean facilities as a measure of respect for workers.

    • 35 min
    Palmina Whelan: Learn Something From Everyone

    Palmina Whelan: Learn Something From Everyone

    Dennis Doran interviews Palmina Whelan, an aviation industry veteran with over 25 years of experience. Palmina discusses her role as the capital program director for the new Terminal One project at JFK airport, emphasizing passenger-centric design and the integration of technology and art. She addresses the impact of her position on promoting diversity and inclusion within the construction industry and the importance of mentorship and learning from diverse perspectives. Palmina reflects on her fair and reasonable approach to professional interactions and the collaborative nature of construction projects. She shares her passion for building and its ability to connect people, her team's success in achieving a 40% diversity rate in projects, and the significance of love in service. The episode wraps up with a look at the timeline for the JFK terminal project and Palmina's commitment to her work.

    • 33 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
5 Ratings

5 Ratings

Buster from MD ,

Soft as Steel

Dennis Doran knows what he’s talking about. I’ve heard him speak and I am a better person for it.

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