More often than not, we learn from our mistakes.
Whether you’re a team of two or 200, your construction company likely has goals for growth. The last thing you need standing in your way is yourself – especially if you’re at the helm of a smaller construction business.
So, what’s the difference between your team and those building 10-plus houses a year? Fewer resources and less margin for error.
Online construction resource, Construction Junkie, reported that the median cost of rework accounts for 9% of total project costs after considering direct and indirect factors. That’s a whole lot of money going down the drain.
But as a small construction company, it’s not only your profits at stake. You’ve got to keep in mind your employees’ morale, your credibility and your drive for a five-star reputation. Avoiding business mistakes will guarantee these objectives while you work toward meeting larger goals.
Here are four project management mistakes you should avoid as the owner of a small construction business.
1. Jumping into jobs without a plan
Grit. Determination. Hard work. It’s how you built your business from the ground up.
As your construction business matures and grows, the need for strategic planning is critical. The more employees and clients you add, the more crucial effective communication methods become. You’ll have to juggle more schedules, more documents, more checklists – more everything.
Relying on your spreadsheets and hand-written notes just isn’t going to cut it. Starting your construction jobs without a plan will not only create chaos but it will hinder your long-term goals.
So, if you haven’t embraced construction technology yet, it’s time. Contrary to what you might think, project management software isn’t just for big builders. Investing in the right tools will help your small team tackle day-to-day tasks while setting you up to scale your business if that’s your goal.
2. Overlooking obvious project risks
You’re the leader of your construction company. That means you can navigate as you see fit. However, ignoring or underestimating obvious risks for the sake of getting the job done can lead to irreparable damage.
Implementing a culture of transparency ensures you avoid common small business mistakes. Give your team big-picture views of projects from the start, so they can better anticipate potential challenges. Enforce the importance of communication and keeping everyone on the same page – both in the field and at the office.
Allowing your crew to be involved from start to finish gives them a sense of project ownership, and they can help you assess possible hazards. And to be extra sure you’re not assuming any unnecessary risk, sign up for builder’s risk insurance.
3. Focusing too much on results, not processes
Results. They’re what every small business owner wants to see. While you’re sprinting toward deadlines and revenue, it’s important not to lose sight of how you’re getting there. Invest time and effort into the actual steps required to achieve your quality work.
Processes are what you should really be focusing on in the long run. Because a streamlined workflow and organized systems are what will get you to your desired results. Maximize resources, minimize risk and break down every job step by step. Embrace the journey to bring the destination within reach.
4. Failing to track and monitor progress
It’s not enough to simply get the ball rolling. You’ve got to follow the movement of a project from beginning to end. You should know how it’s going every step of the way. This is the only way you can see possible issues that need addressed or catch minor errors that could lead to huge business mistakes.
Carefully monitoring each task means you’ll have metrics and data that will allow you to make the best decisions for your upcoming projects. It also gives you the opportunity to ensure accountability and check in on the efforts of your team members.
As a small business, you’re likely wearing multiple hats with many other responsibilities that require your time and attention. The last thing you need is something else to do. This is another great reason why you should automate some of those tasks with construction technology.
Leave learning by mistakes in the past. It’s time to step into the future with Buildertrend
It’s a mistake to assume that just because your company is small, you don’t require the same attention as a larger builder.
Having the right tools in your belt can go a long way toward avoiding construction mistakes. Project management software is the best next step for your small business. Schedule a demo today to learn how our dynamic platform can help you reach your goals.