In terms of boosting team morale, overall business performance, and reducing employee turnover, having a great company culture is essential to success. The strong culture within the company goes for any industry. However, it seems to be set aside in the construction sector and field service industries for some unrecognized reasons.
Without a strong company culture, you’re running many risks for your workers on being less productive, or worst, quitting – both can affect your bottom line. You have to know that creating a lifelong culture isn’t an easy task because this needs to be continuously sharpened, practiced by everybody and refined over the lifespan of your business.
So how much attention you pay to your company culture? How can you effectively build an exceptional and strong company culture? Read more on this blog to know why construction culture matters and some tips that help you build a strong one.
Overview of Construction Culture
Culture manifests itself in various ways in the company. However, it can be directional, driven either from top-down and bottom-up. According to Built-in research, forty-six percent of job seekers cited culture as an “extremely important” aspect before applying to the company.
Considering almost eighty percent of contractors have difficulty hiring skilled workers, company culture could be the major driver to attract more and retain talent, overcoming the labor shortage.
But what truly differentiates a “Good” from a “Great” company? When you’re looking at some of the leading companies today, regardless of the industry, strong company culture is one of the common characteristics they generally share. Company culture is defined as the “Summation of how employees within the organization interact with one another and work together.”
While there’s no single recipe for success, common themes emerge in companies with a positive culture.
Six Ways to Cultivate an Excellent and Strong Construction Culture
Here are six ways you can do to help cultivate a solid culture in your construction company.
1. Create an Inclusive and Diverse work
To improve your construction business and bring in new talents, you need to welcome change. Talent usually differs; however, it is these differences that can help you drive forward. There are many issues that often marginalize inclusivity, from racism to the gender wage gap. Voice and vigilance are considered the primary keys to rise above, creating a different and inclusive environment.
You already have heard the terms inclusion and diversity, right? But what’s the difference between the two and why they have to use them altogether? Here’s a breakdown:
- Diversity – Diversity can represent what we look like, ethnicity, race, gender, socio-economic status, physical abilities, political beliefs, and other ideologies.
- Inclusion – It represents that authentic self – where an individual can be themselves and show up, sharing his perspective and having mechanisms to do so much effectively.
Bringing these two, diversity and inclusion (D&I), widen your access to the best talents, causing improved creativity, innovation, engagement, results, and productivity. In fact, it’s a win-win in the construction industry as everybody continues to compete for top talents with other industries. To validate further, eighty-six percent of women and seventy percent of men seek employers with inclusion and diversity strategies.
2. Cultivate an Environment of Learning
The future of how everyone works is constantly changing. And one of the biggest challenges the construction industry is facing today is the construction labor shortage. And with the advent of the latest innovations and numerous companies racing to adopt cloud-based task management programs, it’s crucial to adopt more standardized strategies of continued education in order to advance the company’s valuable asset – employees.
And now reverse mentoring is introduced to many companies as well. According to them, this mentoring is an effective way to upskill workers by simply taking advantage of their already known skills within the team. While the crew members work alongside one another, it transfers new skills and improves team dynamics through stronger and deeper team collaboration.
Continuous learning boosts your team performance and opens the door to new opportunities. If there’s no learning opportunities, your employees will not become better. Therefore, it’s crucial to step out in their comfort zone and let them try new things. From participating in a webinar class to attending networking to a conference, learning takes different forms. It is important for your company to recognize and provide your people with many opportunities to develop their character and skills.
It’s is very crucial to look for methods that work best for you and your team. It also shows how imperative it is to use a specialized tool for project task management to let them experience a seamless collaboration, allowing them to connect and exchange comments, ideas, insights, and share updates.
3. Develop a Company Culture committed to all Safety Aspects
Safety is a controllable element and can begin at your company’s core. Wearing hard hats and toolbox safety is essential, yet only goes so far. PPE or proper personal protective equipment for all body types is a must-have to create a much safer and inclusive environment for your workers. One size doesn’t seem fitting to all and takes steps to show your workers that their safety is prioritized. It instills trust and confidence.
However, physical safety is only half of the equation. Psychological safety is, in fact, equally important as well, especially when employees feel comfortable showing off their authentic selves without any fear of consequence. In addition, mental well-being is crucial for development and growth as well. So, fostering an environment where your people feel secure and safe empowers them to be extra courageous – conversing openly, taking risks, and making mistakes.
Establishing a comprehensive safety program is at the core of the successful construction culture and deploying subcontractor scheduling software for more transparency with the team. Make sure to promote respect, welcome curiosity and encourage radical candor to your employees. Then, you’re good to go!
4. Launch a Formalized Mentorship Programs and Sponsorship
The main part of the culture driving more safety and greater inclusion comes down to fostering people to people interactions. And an effective way to do this is to launch a mentorship and sponsorship program to determine internal champions.
According to Catalyst, a global nonprofit cooperating to build workplaces for women, “Sponsors are primary advocates who use their influence intentionally to help other people advance, while mentors provide feedback, advice and coaching. Both are very important to advancement while employees explore the workplace and gain growth opportunities.”
By identifying a champion, it opens doors of opportunities for you and positions you for your success. It is about getting a beneficial seat at the table while acquiring skills that support you in your future success.
5. Leader’s Refocus and Strong Commitment
Admittedly, even senior leaders are now working on getting new clients, working hard to ensure that schedules can be met. Hence, in such activities, it’s easier to let go of your values and visions. Some contractors called this the “kiss of death” as they strive to make the workplace a preferred contractor of choice and employee-friendly.
In addition to the previously stated four ways, it is highly suggested that leaders and owners must have a little monthly time for refocusing and recommitment. As the owner, your senior leaders have to know your culture first. For your company culture, you must able to measure several results such as the following:
- Late arrivals and absenteeism are lower
- Customer and employee retention is higher
- Call-backs and reworks are lower
- On-time completion and profitability is higher
- Employee complaints are lower
Don’t worry if you haven’t seen any improvements; it takes a longer time to build the culture you wanted to have. But always remember that culture is contagious. So, if you start taking the lead, your people will eventually start to follow you.
6. Use Construction Scheduling Software
Company culture matters. It shapes how your crew members view your company and openly influences the level of employee engagement you have with them. And with this connection to your employees and the quality of their work produced, it becomes more apparent that the company culture is an essential aspect of your construction business.
But here’s the real deal. With everything cited above, what else can you do to strengthen the relationship between you and your employees? Investing in advanced technologies and software solutions is the answer.
This specialized tool helps you and your team collaborate more effectively, improve team communication, and reinforce great work. Such software solution is designed for project management and construction crew management. Its benefits include strategically stimulating teamwork and employee engagement, providing fair acknowledgment and organization among your employees
As construction firms continue to establish a strong culture that highlights inclusion and diversity, it’s crucial to remember the importance of aligning strategies and include these strategies as a major part of your company’s mission.