There are building blocks you can implement in your company when you’re working toward success in the construction industry.
One of those building blocks is developing a healthy corporate culture. As a construction company, your main challenge is that your workers are dispersed among job sites, not all located in one office. Still, periodic all-company meetings can help reinforce the company vision, values and goals. Most people understand the need for and value of an honest day’s work. Ownership and leaders need to be encouraged and empowered to foster relationships.
Interpersonal relationships are an important factor for stable company dynamics. They ultimately help determine whether workers will stay. Most employees stay with a company because they have quality of life, good relationships and like the people they work with. Companies need ways to enable quality relationships, for instance designating a “culture budget” for activities that employees can do together. Workers need to enjoy their work as well as the people they work with.
Once you have the right people in the right spots in your company, it’s important to also work with the right partner companies. There are times you can even interface with competitors and share insights that result in benefits to each other as well as improving the entire industry in the long run.
A collaborative mindset is another critical building block. It’s unfortunate that general contractors (GCs) are often treated as third-party vendors on construction projects. Many times they are brought in at the last minute on projects to provide bids without being able to give quality input into the project. This not only makes life difficult for them, it eliminates their potential input about supply chain issues that can seriously delay a project. GCs are familiar with the challenges of getting materials and typically how long the delays will be. Subcontractors should also be asked for input so the project can be built most efficiently. For those companies that hesitate to share project information for fear of losing their competitive edge, you should be able to trust the GC you are working with. There are multiple ways to ensure you get the most competitive pricing.
There is long-term value in a preconstruction workflow. First, the architect and owner need to talk to develop the best possible, most constructible project. When the builder is brought into the project early on, there can be meaningful constructability reviews that save time and money down the line. Through collaboration, a project can be value engineered to rework problematic aspects of the project design early in the process. This feature of preconstruction can eliminate the need to redesign a project later if something is wrong with the design or the budget was set too low. The overall project benefits when teams can provide input and understand the target budget and schedule.
Bryson Reaume joined me on Bridging the Gap Podcast episode 159 to discuss building the best team for your project, staying connected, goals, mindset, and the contractor’s point of view.