If there is one thing I could improve it would be time management, especially lately I have found myself missing a meeting, forgetting scheduled activities etc., I thought to myself how could I gain control and develop better time management? So thinking back to a time I thought everything was clicking, and asked myself what was the difference? I realized that I had somewhat of a set routine where I picked five important items that needed to happen everyday. So I wrote down a list of my daily work process from what I call "glory day's" and this is what I came up with.
Have a short discussion on the day’s logistics: deliveries, concrete pours, layout, dumpsters, crane time etc.…
Understand and set daily goals. So you can clearly define and convey to the crew’s.
Information Control: Make sure you’re aware of any changes or challenges you will be faced with that day.
How many Man Hours are left on the task’s being performed?
(Are there only 63 man-hours remaining to place embeds?)
Items you’re tracking tight; treat like a countdown, letting everyone know how many hours are left.
Define goals for the day.
Break down the task, safety, crewing and hour expectations.
Suggestions, comments and ideas.
Verify proper safety, equipment, tools and materials are available.
Make a checklist and follow up items.
Update, review and look-ahead scheduling
Verify task: proper mix designs, embedded items, layout, and changes
Measure production: Man Hours/Units. Are you on track?
If it doesn’t look like you will hit your daily target make adjustments (don’t wait until the end of the day) tracking and motivating everyone is a full time
Quantify units for the day.
Input into a units in place graph to hand out in the evening meeting.
(If you’re not using a units in place chart see the link below to start).
Don’t leave time input until the ends of the week, get it done daily for accuracy and efficiency. (See the link below to help with time cards).
End of Shift Meeting/ Inventory
Did you hit your daily goal?
What went right/ what went wrong group discussion.
Adjustments for tomorrow: Suggestions.
Did you meet/beat your production goals?
Was there re-work done today? If yes why? Get to the route with a group discussion so everyone can learn from that mistake
Did any materials or equipment down?
At the conclusion of the meeting thank them for their efforts!
Having a consistent daily routine will help you develop the necesary time management skills to be an effective leader. When your organized, your job and everyone around you will follow suit.
Check out today's guest blog, giving us a different perspective on construction life.
Over the past twenty years I have been fortunate enough to watch my husbands career grow, not that it hasn’t come with a few challenges. I want to say a few things about my life as a construction wife and how it has been affected by this lifestyle.
Construction starts early, if we’re lucky, the alarm goes off at 4:30 A.M. I always wake up with my husband, make his lunch, get his coffee and if it’s cold, start his truck. Once he’s out the door, I get ready for work, make sure the kids are up and ready for school, and I’m off to work. With those fun midnight pours, or 3:00 A.M. pours, same routine. Who plans those anyways ;-)
In the evening, it’s pretty hard to plan a dinnertime because you never know when a construction worker is going to be home. Once he does finally get home, he eats, he’ll visit with the girls for a bit, maybe watch some TV, then he’s asleep. Any household duties are going to be on me. After working 12-14 hours, there’s no energy for anything else. What is a weekend? Construction workers work Saturdays and sometimes Sundays. They also work out of town.We had one job that kept him out of town for three years!
Now let’s talk about that laundry! Construction laundry in the winter is the worst! It’s muddy, wet, stuck together and just gross. If he ever brought home anything with form oil on it, forget about it, right to the trash. That smell does not come out of the washer.
Through the years things have changed, he doesn’t work as late (sometimes he beats me home) the laundry is much easier, he doesn’t work weekends, and the most he is out of town is for a quick overnighter, which is rare. He is constantly on his phone or computer though. Sometimes I think it would be easier to call him to talk, even if he’s home.
All of that sounds so negative and unappreciative, but the reason I have continued to do the laundry, fix lunch, make coffee, start the truck and so forth for twenty years is because of how very much I appreciate my hard working construction husband.
A construction worker to me is the definition of a man; strong, hard working, and a bit rough around the edges. I adore my life as a construction wife and wouldn’t trade it for anything. Not to mention how exciting it is to go downtown and walk through buildings he has helped to build, or even work in a building he has had a part in building. I have great repsect for construction workers how smart they are, how hard they work, how dedicated they are, and the contibutions they make.
With every new challenge, there is opportunity. Whether you're starting a new job, task or assignment, finding ways to challenge yourself keeps the job fresh and motivating as well as giving you the opportunity to learn, grow and advance in your career. A great way to explore opportunities is evaluating your current processe's, finding strong and weak points. One way to find strong and weak points is using the template below to track efficiencies.
To use the template you will count and add every time you handle material, any re-work, questions asked and answered, if you're on/off schedule and when flow is disrupted.
First is material handling.
How's your communication?
Let's see how you do with the schedule:
Finally track flow:
Tally up your points for each category daily then repeat the process for the week. At the end of the week what was your overall score? What category do you need to work on (the one with the highest number) and what can you do to improve your numbers! Ask yourself/others why those numbers are high and how can they be improved? There is a fault in the process, you just have to find what it is and how it can be improved, creating opportunity for you to better yourself.
So how did you do? Track for a week, share your numbers and let's see where we can improve!
Add some consistency to help you get organized! I know, I know, there is nothing consistent in construction, so it's hard to plan etc... However, if you plan out your day you will go from jobsite firefighter to variable manager answering 50 question rather than 80 questions a day. If you feel like most of your time is answering question, then a simple daily plan added with consisteny is just what you need. So, start off your week by making a daily plan like the one down below, give it a fair try for a couple of weeks to see if it helps with your time management.
6:00-6:30: Coffee, emails and day goal list.
7:00-7:05: Convey you plan to the crews in the morning meeting, setting the days expectations.
7:05-7:10: Verify they understand: ask them to repeat the task plan. This is important, you want everyone to understand the goals and how they are to achieve them.
7:10-7:20: Ask for feedback, this is where great ideas are generated, Listen and re-act give them notice you were listening and if there is a great idea implement it.
7:20-7:30: set up clean, safe and organized work area, tools and equipment.
7:30- start work
9:00: monitor progress; ask if there is anything you can do to help out.
12:30-12:40: Quick meeting checking to see if you’re on track or to determine if necessary changes are to be made, in order to finish the day off strong and on schedule.
3:00-3:15: Roll up tools, equipment etc. Supervision fills out timecards and quantities.
3:15-3:30: If you’re done here, you hit your target goal, assuming you are working an eight hour day, so take the time to thank the crews and ask for any suggestions that could help improve performance tomorrow. If your going to run past your normal scheduled time, you should catch this at the 12:30-12:40 meeting letting the crews know they will be working until they reach the daily goal. This allows them to plan on working late, vs. coming out at 3:00 realizing your going to come up short of your daily goals and force them to stay late with little notice.
When starting a construction project, step one should be pre-planning, not dropping forms in the hole and just going for it! Success comes from good planning.
Think of your jobsite as you go through this list and ask yourself "what could have been pre-planned better and how could you improve your current or next job?"
When planning a job, first step is a good logistics plan. This will make or break not only your job, but also your crew's performance, and every sub-contractor on the job could be doomed from the start.
Review your job tomorrow and see if you have too much or not enough manpower! How does your budget or schedule look based on your current manpower?
Form materials are usually the largest dollar amount on a job, so special planning needs to be exercised here!
Like Form material Equipment can be very costly, especially if it is just sitting idle!
Produce lift drawings, and share them with everyone. The more information passed, lessens the chance of error.
Create a schedule, sequence and workflow
Day One: Pre-Planning
A couple of cool items from the world of concrete that you should check out!
WANT TO CONTRIBUTE: EMAIL HERE