Steve McGough: Workforce Development, Technology Implementation, and Company Culture | Episode 35


Steve McGough is the president and chief financial officer of HCSS, a Texas based company that since 1986 has specialized in developing software to help heavy, highway and utility construction industry companies streamline their business operations.  HCSS’s mission is driven by a desire to help its customers “dramatically improve their business through our innovative, high-quality software and exceptionally helpful service, while providing a great life for our employees.” 

The firm works with more than 4,000 of the best construction companies in North America, including most of the top 25 in “Engineering News Record” magazine’s “Top Heavy Civil Contractors.”

Interview Highlights: 

  • The biggest challenge facing the construction industry 
  • How “I Build America” aims to address this challenge
  • The many educational paths into the construction industry
  • Changes in the construction industry, including the increasing emphasis on safety 
  • How to avoid the biggest mistakes construction companies make when implementing new technology 
  • Why continuing to promote infrastructure spending is vital to construction and the American economy
  • How to attract Millennials and Gen. Z folks to your company 
  • How Steve managed HCSS’ growth from 40 to over 300 employees
  • The importance of aptitude, passion and grit 
  • A simple method for identifying the right employee fit when hiring
  • Using a customer service focus to build a competitive advantage 
  • How HCSS customer, Carolina Bridge,  is successfully attracting high-quality employees

More on Steve… 

A 35-year construction industry veteran, McGough joined HCSS in 2005 as chief operating officer.  He added “president” to his title in January 2015 and “chief financial officer” two years later.  He began his career with Turner Collie and Braden, a consulting engineering firm in Houston that is now part of AECOM. 

McGough has been a distinguished volunteer in national construction organizations for 15 years.  His leadership positions in the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) include: senior vice chairman (2019), first vice chairman (2018), central region vice chairman (2016-17), western region vice chairman (2013-16) and Materials & Services Division president (2012).  He’s also the chairman of the association’s Membership Development Committee, a post he’s held since 2015.

He currently serves on the board of directors and executive committee for The Road Information Program (TRIP), a national transportation research group that promotes transportation policies that help relieve traffic congestion and its impact on air quality, improve road and bridge conditions, make surface travel safer, and enhance economic productivity.

McGough is the recipient of the 2012 Paul F. Phelan Award, which recognizes outstanding leadership and contributions to ARTBA’s Materials & Services Division.  He is an active member of The Beavers, a heavy engineering construction association based in California.

He earned his bachelor’s in civil construction from Texas A&M University and his M.B.A. from Tulane University.

McGough and his wife, Elaine, live in Kemah, Texas, on Galveston Bay.  They have two adult sons, Ryan and Grant.

This episode is brought to you by the: Construction Leaders Dashboard 

The Construction Leaders Dashboard is one of the simplest and yet most powerful tools for leaders in construction companies of all sizes that can be used to clarify what you need to focus on in order to be a highly successful leader. It includes: Vision, Mission, Values, Edge, Initiatives, Metrics, Key Relationships, and Development Opportunities. 

To get your copy of the dashboard, click this link.

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Pat, Glad you enjoyed it. I appreciate the feedback. I'll have some more episodes in the same vein, coming soon. Eric

How to Win the Battle Against Silos | Ep 19

Eric, really enjoyed this podcast. Extreme Leadership is one of my favorite business books. Nice to see that you are incorporating some of their leadership strategies into your podcasts.

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FREE Downloadable Resource:
Construction Leaders Dashboard

Do you lack focus and forward momentum? The Construction Leaders Dashboard is a simple, powerful tool for construction company leaders. Use it to clarify what you need to do in order to succeed. It includes: Vision, Mission, Values, Edge, Intitiatives, Metrics, Key Relationships,
and Development Opportunities.

To get your copy of the dashboard, click this link