The 94th Annual AGC Convention is coming to Palm Springs March 4 - 9, bringing with it a couple thousand construction professionals from around the country who want to network and learn more about the latest industry trends and hi-tech innovations.

"With fewer projects to bid on, rising materials prices, lower profit margins, a shrinking workforce, and an industry unemployment rate that is still far too high, you might be looking for a new way to give your business a competitive edge," said  AGC of America 2012 President Joe Jarboe in a recent message to the organization. "Fortunately, one of the best ways to expand your key contacts is to attend AGC’s Annual Convention in Palm Springs."

Jarboe, who is also senior vice president or Clark Construction Group LLC, says this year's event will focus on innovative ways to grow your business, with an emphasis on doing more with less.

And speaking of innovations, the event will feature a special Mobile Technology presentation by the AGC IT Forum Committee. This showcase will focus on mobile applications in construction. Visitors will see a live demo of construction-focused mobile apps, and AGC presenters from across the country will share why they chose the app they are using, what tablet or smartphone devices the app runs on, and the impact the app has had on their employees, customers and business. Each presenter will discuss their company’s mobile device policy including BYOD, device/data security, and the costs of implementation. There will be opportunity for Q&A at the end of the presentations.

From gadgets to inspiring individuals, the convention will feature speakers such as Peter Diamandis, founder of the X PRIZE Foundation, which offers large incentive prizes to drive breakthroughs for "the benefit of humanity." The Foundation is best known for the $10 million Ansari X PRIZE for private spaceflight and the $10 million Progressive Automotive X PRIZE for 100 mpg-equivalent cars.

As co-founder and chairman of Singularity University, a Silicon Valley-based institution partnered with NASA, Google, Autodesk and Nokia, Diamandis counsels the world’s top enterprises on how to utilize exponential technologies and incentivized innovation to dramatically accelerate their business objectives.

Also on hand will be retired four-star General Michael Hayden, former CIA director, who will talk about handling unforeseen challenges and making informed business decisions.

The event will host a Lean Construction Executive Course Monday, March 4. This seminar will cover minimizing costs and maximizing value on each project completed, challenging all stakeholders to develop and apply better ways to manage the overall construction process. The course, designed for and taught by construction executives, will provide essential information to begin supporting Lean Construction practices and principles within a company.

There will also be a Constructor Expo Rapid-Fire Demo Session on March 6 and 7, detailing who expo exhibitors are and what they can do to impact your business. Participating companies will have exactly 10 minutes to give the audience their elevator pitch and showcase the value of their products or services. There will be no breaks between presentations, no Q&A and "no second chances to make a great first impression."

At the Alliant Build America Awards Dinner on Thursday, March 7, some of America's best construction projects will be awarded by a jury of peers, based on state-of-the-art advancement, project management, client services, community contributions, meeting the challenges of a difficult job and environmental sensitivities.

Other event highlights will include the Economic & Legislative Issues Luncheon on Friday, March 8, which will feature AGC's Legislative team and Chief Economist Ken Simonson offering an evaluation and analysis of the current economic and legislative landscapes and outlooks for the future; and the Bill Ratz Memorial Golf Tournament Saturday, March 9, which will benefit the the AGC Education and Research Foundation. This year's golf tournament will be held at the spectacular Palm Course at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Hotel.

In his message, Jarboe said those who attend the expo will "walk away with an appreciation that you are part of something far bigger than just your firm or even your chapter. You are part of a national association of your construction peers, a community that is dedicated to helping you succeed and fighting for your interests."

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