#EmpowerTheField: How Leaders Can Impact Jobsite Morale
By Stephanie | Posted on April 12th, 2019
As leaders on the jobsite, superintendents and foremen have influence over every individual working in the field. Workers tend to look to jobsite leaders for guidance onsite for more than just work-specific instructions, so it's important for supers to be there for their employees. It's the responsibility of the leader to ensure that they are positively impacting jobsite morale among the crews, which empowers those in the field to work collaboratively and efficiently. Plus, no one wants to earn the reputation of being the worst super in the company.
Of course, the key priority for any super is to meet project deadlines and stay within budget. However, research shows that those who are more satisfied with their jobs are more productive. To expand on this, acting as a supportive, engaging role model will allow workers to trust in your choices for certain changes and switch ups.
Happy Workers are Productive Workers
Over here at Raken, we believe that each employee deserves to be treated as an equal - regardless of their job title or level of seniority. All opinions are valued and encouraged to be shared, which means that everyone gets to feel like their voices have been heard, raising overall morale in the office. Working on a construction site is obviously quite different than going in to an office every day, but in any workplace setting, when employees feel as though they matter, they are happier to do their jobs. Various studies have led to results that show productivity is directly correlated to job satisfaction.
If you're a super, it definitely can't hurt to make extra efforts to see how workers are doing, and you may be surprised to see how responsive they are to your outreach. Your crews will likely feel empowered in their roles, and will respect your authority even more than they already do, thus contributing greater effort into their work. We're not suggesting that any jobsite leaders try to be the "cool parent" to get in with the crew, but to just act as a friendly presence.
Not All Heroes Wear Capes... Some Wear Hard hats
No one likes getting caught up at work at the end of the day, and unfortunately, when subs and crews have to stay back to do paperwork, they may build resentment toward the person requesting the report. Although submitting dailies is just standard protocol required on any jobsite, it's human nature to look for someone to blame. But what if instead of the villain, you could be the hero?
Don Mason, VP of Construction at Tri State, is a prime example of a jobsite leader who cares about his employees. He wanted to find a way to help his workers get back that extra hour they spent on field reporting each day, so they could get off the jobsite and home to their families quicker, and Raken was exactly what he was looking for. By introducing a tool that lowers the amount of admin work the crews have to turn in, Don cut out that extra time they had to take at the end of their days.
Imagine being able to provide your crews with the opportunity to finish work an hour earlier every day. With Raken, you, like Don, can show that you have invested a genuine interest in your employees' wellbeing, while getting high quality, thorough reports from the field. When your crews see how quick and easy it is to use the app, you just might win the boss of the year award... or at least get an invite to the next happy hour. In addition to listening to your employees and bringing a positive attitude to work every day, making their lives easier would definitely bring up workplace satisfaction. In turn, your crews will be completing higher quality work at a faster rate, which will make everyone a happy camper.
Save Time, Save Money, Boost Morale
Those in leadership positions not only have the power to give instructions and enforce rules, but also can act as the catalyst shifting the entire mood of a project. A can-do attitude goes a long way, and showing up with a smile every day can definitely create a positive impact on jobsite morale. If your crews are enjoying their jobs more due in part to your contagious positivity, they will appreciate your leadership, and know that they can trust you as an authority figure. When workers feel that they can have faith in those that are higher up on a project, they will likely be more receptive to new ideas and changes, like incorporating new technology onto a jobsite.
Many supers that we speak to say they have done Raken's free trial, and love the app, but aren't sure if their subs would be willing to give it a shot. Consider our case study featuring Rich Delacy, a project superintendent at Hensel Phelps, who used Raken when building the massive LA Metro Southwestern Yard. Rich is an approachable guy who is open to trying out any new technology that may make his and his crews' jobs easier. Because he's an adventurous leader, he always wants to take advantage of the latest and greatest in construction tech, but sometimes, the subcontractors are a little more difficult to convince. To his surprise, his subs were thrilled to see easy Raken is to use, jumping on board right away.
"Even the more difficult subcontractors, the crusty old ironworkers, where usually it's difficult to get them on board with using technology, they were very receptive to Raken."
-Rich Delacy, Project Superintendent
In order to empower workers in the field to perform to the best of their abilities, leaders must consider the fact that jobsite morale is a serious factor in productivity. By acting as a positive influence and building up trust with your crews, they will know that you are looking out for their best interests when implementing changes, such as using Raken, into the workday routine.