Explore Construction Team Management (The art of delegating)
Updated: May 27, 2022
For Project Managers and Foremen, team building and construction team management are essential aspects of construction projects. As a good project supervisor, you are expected to build teams with crucial personnel that performs set duties on site.
▶️For any team to survive there must be perfect harmony between all members. And it is the job of the team leader to ensure that this harmony is maintained. However, it is expected that there may be conflict and difficulty in team management, and this is typically due to a misunderstanding of responsibilities.
✅It all comes to an understanding of how responsibility works, knowing your job, and listening to your workers. It's the basics of the delegation of authority in the construction industry.
Delegating tasks makes your job a lot easier. By delegating tasks, each team member understands the role they are to play, team management is optimized.
Once you understand these concepts, you will change the way you see your company and the team management involved in running it - regardless if you are a General Labourer, a Construction Foreman, or a Project Manager.
First things first:
THIS IS HOW RESPONSIBILITY WORKS!
Construction Industry & Real Estate Example
Responsibility is more intense at the top, and less intense at the bottom, though it goes until the last chain in command.
👉🏻For instance, if Apple makes an iPhone that overheats, although the engineers are responsible for the mistake, Steve Jobs will get the blame for being responsible for not creating a good enough product/legacy. Yes, even though he is dead.
👉🏻The magic here is you are doing your job and holding everyone else (above and under) accountable for doing their job right in real time. You can offer help, though you should not do the other person's job.
Remember: If you are up in the ranks, you will naturally respond to other people's mistakes down the ranks from your position. To be a great professional, working in a great company, you NEED to be able to hold people accountable, even when uncomfortable. This is the most stressful aspect of team management.
✳️It has become a generally known fact, that humans tend to hate responsibility (not always but often). So, if we were to consider the Job site example, the Labourer may naturally avoid the responsibility and will rather blame the carpenter by saying something like:
“The Carpenter told me to do it”
⚠️Regardless of what rank we're looking at. There is a problem to be treated here.
In this example, the Labourer was not held responsible for his job. Maybe he wasn't being held accountable for it, or the Carpenter didn't properly explain the task.
With this in mind, the first thing to understand is that this idea must be clear in all minds involved in the building process for successful team management.
SET CLEAR EXPECTATIONS*
Explain what will be done & how it will be done & what it will look like when it's finished.
In other words: Give a clean, good explanation of what you need to be done (take your time to reflect, if necessary). Workers need to know exactly what they're trying to achieve.
⚠️Here's a trick we've posted the other day about how to remember all items that should be covered in a good briefing section.
MAKE SURE WORKERS TICK “OK.”
⚠️When it comes to responsibility, it is safe to say that people do not take responsibility for things they don't understand or agree with.
Workers have to accept and agree to follow some specific instructions regarding their jobs.
Only then will they be able to work at their peak. To achieve this, they must be briefed properly in a manner that is clear to them. Therefore, it is essential to check for signs of agreement or disagreement among the construction workers as you instruct them
️Assuming that everyone is on the same page to start with, it is possible that occasionally a worker would change his mind once realizing that some variables were not accounted for in the initial brief.
This may develop resentment among the workers and they might get uncomfortable while doing the work. This discomfort is usually common in jobs where the foreman insists upon sticking to all the instructions and procedures.
To avoid such scenarios, I recommend you to talk to your workers & learn their opinions before the start as well as during execution.
However, If you feel like you always have problems getting your point across, maybe it has something to do with the way you're communicating. Learn more by clicking here
✳️ Pro tip: Listen to their opinions.
The Agreement raises Commitment.
Getting “them” to say that “they” can do it diminishes the possibility of the responsibility being deflected to "someone else".
✳️ Note: This behavior is not exclusive to low-rank General Labourers. We ALL tend to avoid responsibility, and that is the main challenge of team management.
This process is similar to the use of the intention method, where you give the workers some form of control. Unlike collective roles, you narrow it down to specific responsibilities.
⬅️Each man knows what to do and must do it because it is unique to him. Therefore, the success of the entire project rests on each worker and not just on the supervisor.
⬅️When the workers know that all the roles are individual ones, none of them will want to lag because they know that the team can quickly determine where the delay or setback came from in real time.
▶️The main purpose of always asking questions is to make sure workers understand the task, feel respected, and consider responsibility.
As much as you can, ask confirmation questions to clear any doubts that may have developed. The workers’ questions will reveal where your briefing needed more information and will also give you a clearer view of how much experience each worker has.
When asking questions, keep in mind that the main purpose is to bring the workers on the same page as you are. The aim of questioning should be clarification rather than cross-questioning or tests.
Questions should not be a test. Sometimes, “testing” the workers can have a negative effect on their psychological level, as they fall under doubt. Over questioning and testing might end up causing the workers to feel insecure. Which is the same confusion that you are intending to avoid.
GOT IT? LET'S REVIEW THE PROCESS:
Explain what needs to be done: Give a good explanation and due diligence that covers the Intention - What - Where - When - and Then (what to do afterward)
Determine a time frame: By when do you need it done? And do you want it done it well or fast? Cover this question in your explanation.
Explain what will be the metrics to evaluate if the job was well done. Is there a certain outcome you're trying to achieve?
Q&A section. Allow the worker to ask anything and ask questions yourself to check if everything is properly computed and understood
Check if the workers agree with all the details. If not, seek a resolution and agreement or explain the task again.
SHARING AUTHORITY IN A TEAM
In the same way as delegating tasks and responsibilities to workers in collective roles, you will need to narrow it down to the specific responsibilities of each member on the construction site.
You can actively divide tasks between team members or let the team organically share the team goal between members, as long as each worker has a level of commitment to the overall goal.
Therefore, the success of the entire project rests on each worker and not just on the supervisor. When the workers know that all the roles are individual ones, none of them will want to lag because they know that the team can quickly determine where the delay or setback came from.
“Only do what only you can do.”
...and delegate everything else. This is why you know for a fact that everyone is working at their best potential.
✳️To be more specific: Increase your workers productivity by improving a delegation method that never goes wrong. FREE ACCESS: Click here.
⚡What is the role of the construction project manager in the delegation of responsibility to achieve project objectives!
The construction project manager is responsible for the coordination and completion of construction projects. They oversee the project from start to finish, ensuring that it is completed on time, within budget, and to the required specifications.
⚠️The construction project manager is also responsible for delegating responsibility to project team members and contractors in order to achieve project success objectives. In order to be successful, the construction project manager must have strong interpersonal and communication skills, as well as experience in project management and construction management.
With these skills, they will be able to effectively coordinate all aspects of the construction project, ensuring that it is completed on time, within budget, and to the required specifications.
✳️How time management is essential in the success of project planning & decision making process
⚠️successful project planning and decision making in the construction process require effective time and resource management. All successful projects need clear and achievable goals and a timeline for completion.
This is especially true for complex projects with multiple stakeholders. Without a clear plan and timeline, it is easy to get bogged down in details and lose sight of the overall goal. Also, quality control is essential for keeping everyone on track and ensuring that the project is completed on time and within budget. Best practice dictates that project managers should create a schedule at the beginning of the project, and then update it regularly as new information arises.
⚠️This schedule should be available to all stakeholders so that everyone is aware of deadlines and milestones. By adhering to best practices in the construction phase, project managers can ensure the successful completion of even the most complex projects.
KEEP IN MIND
With proper team management, you realize that your job isn't difficult. Like in the engine of your wristwatch, with every gear working properly, it tells time correctly. But if one becomes faulty, the entire mechanism is compromised. This also applies to team management.
⚡Make sure you know what is your job and every other worker knows theirs down the Responsibility Pyramid. Do YOUR job with care and hold all other workers accountable for doing the same.
By keeping everyone in sync, the construction site grows on schedule without any delays on your side. But if the team isn't managed properly, your construction plans can be misinterpreted and will cost you time and resources.