It’s no secret that construction workers are some of the world’s most skilled and experienced tradespeople. However, even the most experienced worker can benefit from additional training. In this blog, we’ll cover standard training such as leadership development, effective communication, and safety that can take your business from mediocre to industry-leading.
96% of construction companies fail before reaching 10 years. We have identified many contributing factors: daily reports, job site management, and employee time tracking, just to name a few. Developing great field employees and the office staff is essential to keep your business running.
You Will Be Successful If You Can Get Your Construction Employees to Commit to the Following Skills:
1. Leadership Training
The different methods you use to motivate, manage, and direct your team define the type of leadership style you have. Every leader should understand their leadership style and the strengths and weaknesses that come along with it.
The different leadership styles we will cover include: Transformational, Delegative, Authoritative, Transactional, and Participative.
Characteristics of transformational leaders focus on change, the future, and people. Their approach inspires team members to move forward and leverages each individual’s full potential. This sort of leadership is helpful in organizations seeking to make significant changes or improvements.
Delegative leaders are quite the opposite. This style is a very hands-off leadership style with the mindset of letting everyone do what they do. This style works best with competent team members. Understandably, this style isn’t easy for new employees to adapt to if they don’t have experience in the field.
Authoritative leaders are visionary people. They go with a “follow me” approach. Micromanagement is a tendency, but these leaders get to know their team and typically motivate and inspire them.
Transactional leaders rely on structure and use rewards and punishments to achieve their goals. They regularly stick to routines, and employees will always know their goals or tasks. Having consistent incentives within the company is a must for this leadership style. Otherwise, it is easy for them to seem biased.
Lastly, participative leadership listens and encourages team members to participate in decision-making. They are inclusive, have excellent communication skills, and can share power. When problems arise, collectively, as a team, they develop solutions; they don’t assign blame. These individuals build trust with employees.
Regardless of what leadership style is in your company currently, you need to be able to adapt your leadership style to meet the needs of your team. After all, your employees are the backbone of your company. If they’re not motivated or inspired, your business will suffer.
2. Effective Communication
To be an effective communicator, you must develop the skill of being an active listener. An active listener isn’t distracted, listens without judgment, and consciously tries to hear and understand what is being delivered. But, of course, that is easier said than done.
Employees can improve on verbal, non-verbal, and written communication in construction. These three types of communication have an overlap in skills, but each plays a role in becoming a well-rounded employee.
Verbal skills start with active listening. Frequently asking open-ended questions with a positive tone and responding with curiosity and empathy are common traits. In addition, verbal skills allow you to speak confidently and use concise language.
Nonverbal communication skills involve body language: eye contact, facial expressions, and posture. Team members should avoid aggressive gestures. Finger-pointing, fidgeting, tapping, or playing with hair are poor examples of nonverbal communication.
Lastly is written communication. Although it is overlooked in construction, it plays a huge role. Contracts, instructions, and time cards create a loss of profit if there is a miscommunication in writing. Constantly remind employees to double-check messages or emails before sending them.
The construction industry relies on communication. If you notice that your employees aren’t excelling in one of these areas, provide more training. Effective communication makes a more efficient and cohesive work environment.
3. Safety Training
Working in construction comes with a lot of risks. There are always potential hazards, whether working with heavy machinery, being on scaffolding high off the ground or dealing with hazardous materials. Because of this, safety training is essential for all employees, regardless of their position.
There are three types of safety training: general, job-specific, and emergency. General safety training covers the basics of construction safety, such as job site attire and first-aid best practices. This type of training should be mandatory for all new employees.
Job-specific safety training is essential for employees who will be performing tasks that could be dangerous. It’s important to assess the risks of each job and create a training program that covers all the hazards. Different job sites require different training. Ensure your employees understand all risks when tackling a new project.
Emergency safety training should be in place for all employees in case of an accident. Knowing what to do in case of a fire, earthquake, or another disaster is vital. Employees should know the evacuation routes and protocols for every situation.
Having safety training in place will help to create a safe work environment and reduce the number of accidents. OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) gives you free Toolbox talks that are an easy way to provide safety training for your crew.
4. Daily Report Training
Daily reports can provide teams with the information they need to meet deadlines, have needed materials on site, and stay within budget. Some contracts require a fee if a project isn’t done on time. As a business owner, you never want to put your company in the position of relying on a hail-mary pass.
Having daily reports is the key to staying up on project deadlines. If you bid on a job that has 45 days until completion, you don’t want to know you’re behind when you have 5 days left. The weather could have taken a turn, and it might not be possible for you to complete the project, costing your company thousands of dollars.
Instead, having a daily report software will show your job site progress, and you can instantly see if you fall behind. Having your crew document damages or injuries will reduce your liability in a false workman’s compensation case. Documenting any injuries or safety concerns will increase job site safety.
Employees can upload labor and other expenses into a daily report to check if they are within your bid price range. Contractors are more inclined to accept a change order request if unseen obstacles are caught immediately. Being able to show daily reports is excellent documentation to show what went wrong.
Nothing is more annoying than waiting on materials in construction. Never let a project sneak up on you without having all of the materials you need. With daily reports, you can see how close you are to needing material so you can get them ordered on time. If your crew is ahead of schedule, no need to halt progress because they don’t have what they need.
You can keep everyone moving, monitor your spending, and increase job site safety by taking the time to implement daily reports for your crew.
5. Mobile Employee Time Tracking
Your team members, who are good leaders and effective communicators, will have the easiest time trying a time-tracking app.
To have accurate daily reports, you need accurate data. Having cloud-based timesheet storage is the only way you can always gather correct employee time cards without having to drive to multiple job sites and decipher employee handwriting.
Your top-performing team members care about job site progress—the raw stats. Take Micheal Jordan, Kobe, or Larry Bird. Legends. Their goal was to be the most effective in the game of basketball. They complemented their team. They might have been obsessed with individual stats (I haven’t asked), but we know they reviewed stats (game film) to see where they were weak and could improve to become the best.
Your head equipment operator might not go down in history, but are you providing your team game film? Can they see where they could improve to make you more money?
Employee time tracking is how you can get your stats. Accurate time tracking will give you insight into where you can improve efficiency and gain new levels of job site productivity.
Construction GPS time tracking apps allow you to prevent employees from clocking in before arriving at a job site. You can easily set up a Geo fence and start getting accurate time cards. The average employee rounds their time card by nearly 10 minutes per card!
Employee time tracking gives you the information needed for accurate daily reports.
6. Job Site Management Software
To have the edge over your competitors, software specializing in tracking field employees, generating daily reports, and having easy payroll options available is ideal.
Job site management software keeps all the data you need to succeed at your fingertips. Time tracking apps can easily export to 3rd party payroll parties or even generate payroll themselves in minutes. As a result, tasks that used to waste office administration time, like collecting/deciphering paper time cards or calling on-site employees to ask where employees placed their time cards, are eliminated!
For a construction company to make it past 10 years, they need leaders who can communicate and employees who will encourage a transition to mobile time tracking. Implement these construction ideas and start running your business.
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In order to have an efficient construction business that can take on any project and complete it under budget and on time, you need to be able to track employee time, manage job sites, and develop skilled employees. We hope these tips are used to help increase your profits, and job site safety and give you an overall direction on what to train your employees on.