How to Manage Construction Projects like a Pro
Want to be an irreplaceable asset to your organization? Master these tips.
Use and Track your Resources Wisely
Losing focus on your key project constraints (quality, budget, and schedule) can cause significant irreversible damage to your project, your relationships, and your reputation. Having processes and tools in place, learning them inside and out, and using them effectively will help keep your project on track.
Collaborate and Delegate
Not one person can take on all the deliverables of any given project at once. That’s why managing a project and its constraints are known to be a team effort. In construction you rarely work independently, and you need to refine your people and management skills to get buy-in from your team mates. Distribute workflow evenly either by function or task (ie: RFI’s and Submittals to the Project Engineers, Site Safety and Trade Scheduling to the Site Superintendents, etc.). You can also automate your communication, document management, and other systems.
Avoid Finger-pointing and Be Accountable
Mistakes happen, but don’t get caught up in whose fault it is. Instead, follow-up on the root-cause and ensure that the lesson’s learned are built into the processes for managing future projects. This will help avoid any future potential conflicts or risks. Every project brings unique challenges.
Build in Lag Times
There are always risks in Construction, such as labor shortages and strikes, supply-chain issues and material availability, a possible tornado etc. Therefore, it is wise to build in reasonable lag times at crucial milestones throughout the project to help reduce the impact of those events they do occur.
Attention to Detail
There are many types of Construction documents including Drawings, Contracts, Specifications, Shop Drawings, RFI responses, Change Orders and Change Directives, Schedules, MOP’s, Insurances, etc., and it’s important to always stay on your toes. Carefully assess each document that comes your way as each of those document types will affect project constraints (quality, budget, and schedule).
Never underestimate the power of a strong relationship. Personalize your communication, grab a coffee to discuss project issues and workout some solutions, constantly network and form allies. By doing so, do not expect immediate results – you have to have to play the long-game. Additionally, the construction industry is very tight-night, and the way you communicate will either have a positive impact on your reputation or otherwise.
You can’t expect everyone to have the same work ethic as you. Many do not share the same won’t have the same goals and objectives either. But everyone serves a purpose, and it’s important that you remember that in the way that you communicate and behave as an integral part of your project team (and within your organization).
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