There’s a longstanding debate on the true impact of motivating workers to improve productivity in the construction industry. After technology provided productivity tools custom-designed to cater to construction needs, the old strategies of motivation have seemingly lost its essence as a major driving force for laborers to work harder.
But is this practice dead? Should contractors stop putting effort into motivating their crew members?
The Relation Between Motivation and Productivity
How to Motivate Construction Workers
1.Celebrating Small and Big Achievements
People love recognition in all their achievements. It doesn’t matter how big or small their accomplishments are; either way, you should honor them for a job well done.
Honoring their efforts doesn’t require costly rewards. You can offer some sort of recognition like MVP certificates or Employee of the Month Award that you can post at the site’s bulletin board or your collaboration software. You can even do the announcement by just sending an email to everyone to let everyone know who’s standing out.
Some project managers said they take into account all these small accomplishments, tally them by the end of the year, and award monetary gifts to their employees or team with the most victories. Know that workers greatly appreciate financial incentives, whether a gift card or a cash bonus. This and a pat on the back remain to be the biggest motivator of workers in putting their best foot forward.
Did you know that food goes a long way in construction? After a long day at the construction site, workers just want to relax and refill their energy with good food. Some others are in constant need of coffee to keep them awake during the days or nights that they’re working overtime.
This is why some construction sites now have their pantry areas filled with free coffee and light snacks. Don’t worry about the costs because their hard work can mean a bigger return for you.
You can also organize monthly dinners where you can bond personally with your team over steak and beer, and hear their interesting stories. Nothing beats personal interaction in making your subordinates realize that you care for them.
3.Engage With Your Team
It’s amazing how a construction project management software like Pro Crew has improved communication at the construction site. It made announcements almost instant. However, nothing can change the depth of engagement that personal conversation offers.
In the field, you should be aware of what each of your members is working on. Some things can be kept hidden and lied about when making reports on the construction management software, but they can’t when you are making the rounds. This is why site inspections are still necessary despite employing productivity software at the site.
Face to face communication also helps you evaluate suggestions when your plans are already being carried out. Hearing out your people will give them the impression that you value their opinion. If you don’t know yet, this boosts their morale and makes them loyal to you. Consequently, they’ll find the desire to improve their work quality and rate as a way to show their gratitude to you.
4. Don’t Treat Them Like Slaves
Only have your members do the tasks defined in their contract. Don’t take advantage of their employment by flooding them with work that isn’t even a part of their job description.
Don’t use your manager title to have others do whatever you request them. If there’s something simple that you can do, then do it instead of pulling out people from their stations.
5.Provide Your Team With a Comfortable Working Environment
In an industry as tiring and stressful as the construction, people are often seen quitting their jobs. Some others resign because they become the outlet of their employer’s stress. So even when you are pressured by your client or the schedule or how things are going wrong at the site, keep your stress away and do not let it impede the work of your team.
Also, when you think that the progress is slow, do not stress out your team in a way that they’ll feel degraded. A little push is enough just so that they will be motivated to meet the deadline.
Another way to provide a comfortable working environment is to set up a resting place where they can rest when they need to. It is hard to work when you are sleepy and it is the same as your workers. They can only work efficiently when they are fully rested, but be clear to them that there’s only a limited time that they can rest when they think they’re feeling weak.
Setting a place to properly comfort themselves, too, and a room where they can eat comfortably are other things you can provide for their convenience.
6. Always be Humane
Your subordinates are people too. They have a life outside the site so be understanding when they need to attend to important personal matters. Some of them are fathers or grandfathers too. Emergencies can’t be avoided and special occasions too. So when they say they need to step out for a couple of hours or clock out earlier and their reason is acceptable, give them the chance to attend to their personal lives.
Make sure that you let your members know that you can empathize with them and that you prioritize their well-being too. Whether it be listening to their concerns or offering a solution to their problems, showing your concern will strengthen your relationship with them, leading them to be loyal to you.
7.Lead by Example
While you keep an eye on your members, know that they are keeping theirs on you too.
Always set an example to them whether it is on work ethics or executing tasks. Being a project manager doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t know what laborers are doing. It is, actually, the opposite. Being the leader, you should know what each of your team members is doing and how they should be performed.
Be enthusiastic at the site and it will radiate to your members. The behavior you show to your members is paramount so always make sure to show them positive traits they can admire and follow.
So when they see you working hard to achieve your daily goal and meet deadlines, they will find the inspiration to do the same.
8. Allow Growth in the Workplace
Although most are contractor workers in the construction industry, be sure to help them level up too by offering free training. Everyone wants to level up too so when they tell you that they want to learn new skills and you think that they can, then allow them to go through training programs.
Support the dreams of your members and show them that you want their lives to improve too. A simple training where you teach them how to use technology at the site like your construction project management software is one example of showing them that you want them to level up.
Offer promotions too. Those who skilled up deserve a raise in their salary. So when they can offer something more, be sure to pay them at the right rate.
Motivating your construction crew members can be a good investment. Making your workers happy will lead to their enhanced productivity rate, which, consequently, can help you make sure that your deadline and budget are met. As a contractor, this means faster ROI and earlier project turn around. This then lets you accommodate more new projects.
So apart from knowing what your members are working on through your construction management software like Pro Crew, make sure that you find ways to motivate them too and later enjoy the rewards of their improved performance.