If 2020 has taught the construction industry anything, it’s to work faster, smarter, and more economically. What’s costing the most time and money is our inability to communicate effectively.
“The art of communication is the language of leadership,” said James Humes. This is a serious business and it’s time we pay attention to what the experts are telling us: The construction industry loses billions of dollars every year to situations that could have been prevented or more quickly resolved with better communication.
The Construction Industry: People and Communications
Poor communication…poor project data account for…$31.3 billion per year in avoidable construction costs. -Dottie McCallen, Communications Manager
Even a small project involves dozens of employees: front office, bookkeeping, onsite management and personnel, property owners, etc. Here are communication tips that can keep the construction industry working when others are failing:
- Be specific – “We’ll be cutting the power sometime in October” is a formula for failure. Instead: “We’ll be cutting the power the morning of October 25 to Buildings 1, 2, and 3.” Don’t ask someone to “handle the paperwork.” Tell someone to please submit the paperwork by end of day on September 25.
- Cut to the chase – You know what you need, but what do they need? If you can accomplish what everyone needs with a quick phone call, that’s your best communication route.
- Don’t assume everyone knows – If you must make assumptions, assume nobody knows anything and communicate simply.
- Focus – Before your meeting, phone call, or email, focus. What’s the one thing you need them to know? Use your focal point at the beginning and end of the communication.
- More is better – Over-communicate. You may assume someone has no direct input into the project, but anyone, at every level, can have ideas; they can spot mistakes. The more you communicate, the more knowledge you cultivate.
- Respond – The quickest way to show disrespect or lack of concern is to ignore communication.
- Say what you mean – Honest communication gets you listened to and heard by every audience.
What do you need? Every week we collect construction industry data that drives business development. Communicate with Construction Monitor. We’ve got construction industry analytics that can help you cultivate leads.