6 Tips to Successfully Lead Construction Teams
Construction sites are a sort of controlled chaos. Projects and builds are often made successful in large part by the leaders guiding the job from start to finish. With the right leadership, workers can increase performance and efficiency. Different styles of leadership on a construction site have a direct impact on how the project can turn out, with great leaders influencing high performance and respect from crews and subcontractors.
From project management to estimates and bids, Viewpoint has the construction tools to make all workers perform to the best of their ability. Whether at a corporate office or a construction site, good leadership is based on experience, habit, knowledge, and behavior.
On the jobsite, it’s common to work with different teams on each part of the build. On many sites, a formal, appointed leader, is not always present. Therefore, informal leaders step up to move things along. Understanding and identifying how to be a leader can help ensure your success on the job, as well as quality project results for the entire crew, company, and client.
1. Follow and enforce safety protocols.
Safety can often be underestimated by workers if their supervisors do not properly communicate safety procedures and potential risks to be aware of. Don’t assume that every employee on the ground knows the correct safety measures for a particular site, job, or piece of equipment. Lead by your actions. If team members see others cutting corners on safety protocols, they are more likely to follow suit. It can never hurt to reiterate safe work practices.
2. Communicate about equipment.
When equipment of all sizes is coming and going on a regular basis, it’s important to take the time to explain to your crew why each item is there and what it is to be used for. A simple walk-through of equipment right off the bat can keep the entire team on the same page, with no surprises coming up later down the line.
3. Make decisions and move things along.
Waiting for decisions to be made can seriously delay construction projects. Within your ability, coordinating actions and keeping timelines moving can keep jobs on time, ahead of time, and on, or even, under budget. Being known as a decision maker and problem solver cements your leadership role for future projects.
4. Be available and approachable.
If workers are spending a majority of their time trying to track down a leader, tasks fall by the wayside. Be available either in person or via mobile, email, or through integrated construction software like Viewpoint. Also, having an open-door policy encourages employees to speak up when issues arise or when a cost-saving solution is discovered.
5. Exercise expertise, with caution.
Nobody wants to work with a know-it-all, but having someone with a vast amount of expertise willing to share and guide is invaluable. Official and unofficial mentor and mentee relationships can last a lifetime. Passing on tips and best practices can help ensure younger generations of workers possess the same respect for the trade and craftsmanship you and your mentor have.
Regardless of the type of leader you are or want to be, communication lies at the heart of all management. Being able to understand and apply effective communication throughout a project is key to a successful job. As jobs and workflows change, new challenges require new leadership skills, behaviors, and ways of communicating.