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5 Key construction management skills needed for recovery

As industry sectors are giving the green light to reopen, concerns about safety remain. But for many construction managers the biggest challenge is making business work, while at the same time navigating all the constraints, impacting factors and concerns. Already in May 2020 the construction sector recorded a high number of administrations – which was to be expected. How can construction managers help their firms avoid the same fate?

Collaboration

While all companies were impacted by the pandemic, it affected businesses in different ways. There is an opportunity to use collective strengths to support and rebuild the industry through collaboration. The crisis highlighted just how interconnected everything is and what the domino effect can be when things go wrong. So whether it’s sharing expertise or joint venturing to be able to implement new technology, managers that can identify and effectively manage industry collaboration will aid their firms’ and the industry’s recovery abilities.

Change Management

While many companies chose to furlough their staff, the reality is that as operations recommence, restructuring and retrenchments may still be necessary. Managers will have to make the difficult decisions on how to implement this effectively and handle the obvious negative impact on staff morale and output. Previous experience in change management is going to be critical during this time.

Digital transformation

Lockdown highlighted how necessary technology is, as well as the possibilities for flexible and remote working arrangements. It’s been an opportunity to test systems, experiment with new technologies and programmes and consider what the possibilities are for working more effectively in future. Managers that are knowledgeable in terms of technology and are able to drive implementation will be an asset to their organisations.

Crisis management

While we all look forward to returning to some semblance of normal, the reality is that there’s a rocky road ahead. Construction managers are going to be kept on their toes trying to stay ahead of the challenges. Decisiveness and the ability to think clearly and take the right actions at the right time will be needed.

Negotiation

Because of all the unknowns and external factors, there’s going to be a great deal of re-negotiation happening in the coming months – with suppliers, clients, employees and industry partners. The ability to identify key needs, strengths and opportunities along with strong negotiation skills will help main contractors navigate the road to recovery and scale up operations once again.