When the world is operating as usual, you probably spend most of your time on the jobsite. There, it’s easy to set goals and determine if you’ve achieved them. If you’re working from home or trying to manage an ad-hoc workspace, productivity takes on a whole new meaning. Here are some ways you can evaluate your work and set goals that are easier to measure and reach in a different working environment.
Communicate with Employees and Subcontractors
From the very beginning, you should communicate with your employees and subcontractors to get a sense for what they are able to do off the site. At present, lots of people are dealing with interruptions to their time due to trying to work with children or other family members at home. This makes it harder for people to focus, and can make it even more difficult for someone who needs to work on a dangerous task. Although productivity is important, it is also vital to start with goals that people can reasonably achieve.
Re-Evaluate Project Risks
If you are like many business owners, you conduct at least a basic risk management analysis for each project that you do. Some projects that you formulated prior to shelter-in-place orders may need to be re-evaluated. Specifically, you may want to look at timelines, budgetary concerns, and alternatives for components that you planned to assemble or build onsite. This will help you to figure out where you need to put most of your resources, and which areas are best for getting work done off-site.
Set Goals Based on Current Expectations
Businesses in a lot of industries will be finding their way to a new normal over the course of the next year. You can do the same by recognizing that the standards you set for productivity last year probably won’t work this year. Take a look at your current situation, including limits on where you can work and with how many people. Build in some flexibility if you can, to take advantage of changes in restrictions as they happen. Ultimately, be sure to keep your goals realistic not just for your employees, but for you as well. It serves no one if you are constantly setting standards for yourself and others that you simply cannot meet.
Aim for Self-Management
In a new, post COVID-19 world, your management practices will also need to change. If your standard so far has been to keep a close eye on everybody working under you, now is a good time to rethink that. People don’t tend to be more productive if they have the sense that a supervisor is watching them constantly. Micromanaging bosses in all sorts of industries are starting to find out what a productivity-killer this can be. Let this be an opportunity for you to invest in employees and subcontractors you can trust. That way, you can let them do their work and focus their time on productive activities, instead of responding to your monitoring system.
Use Tools to Collaborate
Since people working offsite and individually may keep different hours, being able to standardize your expectations and make them accessible to everyone is crucial. If you haven’t already started using online collaboration tools that allow everyone to look at goals for the project and the individual day, this is your opportunity to start. Collaboration is likely going to look very different for the construction industry in the next few years. Learning how to share visual updates and keep everyone on the same page can make it easier for you to measure progress and ensure that the workflow continues forward.
When you run a contracting business, productivity isn’t just a buzzword. Finding way to stay on top of it during a crisis can make the difference between success and failure. To get started, visit CSLS today!