5 Strategies that helped me get ahead as a Construction Professional
It is a challenge for Construction Professionals to go all out and implement their dreams. All I know, is that we all face the same set of challenges individually and as an organization.
I remember vividly when I was still a Site Engineer, I wanted to run my own site in all aspects. I looked up at the various leaders’ qualities and I handpicked the qualities I liked which I then retrofitted to suit me. I had a lot of self-belief to a point that I was headache to my supervisors because I was very persistent with my request to run my own site.
MY LIST OF STRATEGIES I ADOPTED TO GET HEAD IN MY CONSTRUCTION CAREER:
1. THE POWER OF AN EARLY START
I was very persistent but politely so. I figured out the key components in the construction business are: labor, plant, material and the client. I became inquisitive on how to successfully control the first three, but I realized that it takes time. It took me a few months to have a concrete mission in place. I had many thoughts running through my mind on how make time to understand how labor, plant and materials can be successfully managed: I wished there was a day between Friday and Sunday. The only solution for me was to create more time for myself as the latter was just an impossible dream or thought.
I conditioned my body to wake up at three in the morning, a tough task. The first two weeks were tough but my body got accustomed to it. It then dawned on me that I got a lot done in the early hours of the morning than during the day. The following were the reasons why this was possible.
- No cellular phone disturbance
- No people disturbing me
- A regular clear and concise “to do” list
- An undisturbed and fresh mind with uncorrupted and innovative ideas
These show clear intentions and a very structured routine planning. The mentality I developed, was that of a small company mindset in a big company. At times in the morning, I wouldn’t just work but sketch thought process on how to optimize performance. That was brought by my observation of people (labor) that I was working with. I was younger than most of them and I had to strategize to win them over. That’s where I realized that I had to make them part of the success we would like to see. I coined an “internal” motto for myself: “Achievement through people.” The main trick for me was to realize that I may not get things done perfectly but that there were no reasons for avoiding getting things done. I always had a head start at work because I had most time to monitor and motivate my team whilst my peers were busy planning their day, etc.
2. WORKING SMART
It was always easy for me with the superior planning (from the early morning start) to always work smart. A well-planned day will always deliver great results because during the day, it gives one time to think, monitor and project into the future. It makes you to observe the behavior of the team and how they perform under certain conditions, etc. When you work smart, you are bound to get good rewards and recognition.
3. HARD WORK
It might sound like most of the time one must work smart, but you can only start working smart when you have started with the hard work. There is no shortcut to success, but this less travelled and lonely road will earn you respect as you will be on top of your game. The main ingredient is always having a positive attitude and mind.
4. APPRAISING MY TEAM
Success in construction is about a happy workforce. It is very important that as a Construction Professional you do the basics first like greeting your team, know their names, know a bit about their families, their likes, etc. Once these key basics are established, you have won a major battle: they know that you have their best interests at heart. They will always work motivated and do their best to show how they value your trust and love for them. Once a team is motivated, it works and there is less time for gossip or horse play. Always, appraise your team where they deserve and do the best for them. Being close to your people, you achieve a lot, it makes it easier to understand their weaknesses and strength so that you can allocate them correctly. The intervention becomes less complex in various situations.
Once a team buys into your way of doing things, chances are that you become a talent magnet. The reason is that when people feel valued, they will always feel attracted to those that value them. Relationships start with your people first. As a leader, you must show positive attitude to your team because it rubs off. Remember: everybody wants to be associated with winning and winners.
5. WORK WITH THE END IN MIND
It’s all about a mind that is set to achieve. As a Construction Professional you must “see” and imagine how what you are creating will look like when complete. That should be the main driver on your consciousness to the ultimate quality you want to produce. It’s a lifetime legacy that must be filled with pride. My success has always been based on imagining the future in all aspects of the project. I have never underestimated the power of imagination.
Do you agree with Danny’s strategies? What worked for you share with us