A good construction superintendent understands and possesses an acute view of the big picture. From beginning until the end, construction superintendent must coordinate workflow and simultaneously balance a variety of responsibilities and personalities.
Given the tremendous importance of management to make sure a project is successful, here are five traits that make an effective construction superintendent.
1. Excellent Communication
Good construction superintendents have excellent communication skills. They communicate effectively and clearly, so that everyone understands responsibilities and tasks. They also understand how to speak to both teams and individuals as the situation requires.
Good communication is not only evinced in how a construction superintendent speaks, but also in how often he or she speaks. Project managers must communicate consistently and frequently so everyone remains updated and on the same page. This will prevent delays and ensure the timely completion of objectives and the project as a whole.\
2. Delegative Prowess
Around 2,500 years ago, the legendary general named Sun Tzu wrote: “He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered with by the sovereign.”
In other words, a good leader does not micromanage and knows how to delegate responsibly.
You do not need to be a legendary general to know no one can do everything on his or her own. There are simply more tasks to complete in a day than 24 hours will allow. Thus, the only way to succeed is to delegate responsibility. Not only does this empower those the construction superintendent oversees, it allows the superintendent to focus on the overall project responsibilities, instead of doubling up and performing tasks themselves they have hired others to do.
3. Proper Prioritization
Another trait that dovetails with delegation prowess is the ability to prioritize tasks. Just as someone cannot do everything by themselves in a single day, so too can someone not perform all tasks at once.
A good construction superintendent understands the importance of each task and can create and execute the optimal work schedule to ensure the most important tasks are completed at the right time.
4. Problem Solving
While in an ideal world every project would finish on-time without problems or setbacks, we unfortunately do not live in an ideal world. As such, a great construction superintendent must have excellent problem-solving skills to meet the plethora of issues that will inevitably arise when working on any project.
Perhaps even more important, a good superintendent will be able to identify and predict where problems and issues are likely to arise. This then will allow him or her to initiate the right mitigative strategies to avoid these problems altogether, or at the very least, lessen their detrimental effects.
5. Project Knowledge
Finally, a great superintendent knows that he or she must not only be an expert on the industry, but also, on the specific project at hand. A great construction superintendent learns as much as possible about the project and the client.
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