With all the ups and downs of COVID-19, what is it that continues to create a strong and lasting teamwork attitude from employees within the construction industry?
We caught up with PBC General Manager Anthony Baker whose Victorian business specialises in commercial projects constructing everything from towers for The Bureau of Meteorology to architecturally designed centres for children with special needs.
Here, the business owner candidly shares how to retain a strong workforce with team spirit during these unique times – while riding the COVID-19 wave.
“Construction can be a physically and mentally challenging career, though a rewarding one, but it shouldn’t take away the time it takes to listen to everyone in the team, communication is key, even when we aren’t experiencing a pandemic.
“Being flexible and learning to bend and sway with your team as required to achieve your end goal depending on what it is that you are confronted with day-by-day.
“There is no place for Silo’s in the construction industry – sharing the big picture with your team enables each phase of the construction program to be delivered with understanding and consideration for the next, this enhances team unity, reduces risk and in the long run saves time and cost.”
When it comes to aligned and positive teamwork, Anthony said it was crucial because ‘no job could be completed by one person’.
“You must pull together to get things done. The nature of people who work in construction, makes the atmosphere fantastic, because our industry creates a culture of requiring a sense of humour and I have found this is essential. We work hard, long hours and being able to laugh is the release to help us get through a mentally and physically draining day.
“All of us on a project, from the earth worker to the painter, have a role and each role fulfilled properly makes the task for those that follow easier – just the same is the importance of a site management role, ensuring that the project is delivered on time, on budget, and to the specifications provided.
“Each one of us are a cog in the wheel, recognise and value communication – it will not only help others but more often help you.”
Anthony said as far as work ethic and organisational skills went, it was important to remember that ‘trust is the oil that drives the engine’.
“Technique is everything, encourage your team to improve their eye for detail and care about what they leave behind – there is real satisfaction in being able to stand back and admire what you have created for the day.
“Anyone can stick a frame together or hang a door – it takes a tradesman to leave it looking like it always belonged, to clean up after himself at the end of the day and make considered notes for the next day and beyond. Hard work is always noticed because it is the cornerstone for positive change and commitment. The more you put in the better the outcomes.”