Monthly Archives

October 2018

The Importance of Communication in Autonomous Roles

By | Contractors, Public Adjusters | No Comments

Contractors and public adjusters do a lot of work on their own. Whether it is scoping houses, supervising projects, or cranking out paperwork, it isn’t uncommon that they do all of it with little to no guidance or input from others. Autonomy is what helps many of these businesses run successfully; when the employees know what needs to be done, and get it done without needing to be told, it makes the whole company more productive and profitable.

However, just because someone can do something without input from others, doesn’t always mean they should. Communication is essential in the workplace, even when it isn’t necessarily needed. In autonomous roles, such as public adjusting or project management, communication can improve both individual and company performance in a lot of ways. Below we talk about some of the most important reasons to keep the lines of communication open at your company.

Keeps Everyone Connected

While it seems like an obvious point, communication keeps everyone connected. That may seem like a “well-duh” kind of statement, but in autonomous roles, people tend to only communicate with the other people that they need to get their projects done instead of communicating with everyone. When people take the time to communicate with all their coworkers, it fosters the culture of the company, which can sometimes get lost when there are lots of singular roles in a business. Even just asking about someone’s day in passing in the parking lot counts as communication that can help build a culture. When employees like the culture they work in and feel comfortable with their coworkers, they are more likely to stay at that job and enjoy doing their work.

Decreases Problems And Confusion

From scheduling crews, to ordering materials, to keeping property owners properly informed there is a mass amount of information and tasks that keep every project moving forward. For the most part, each person is focused on their projects and the tasks that they need to accomplish, which works, it’s how the work gets done. But when everyone is focusing only on their projects, things can get lost. If project managers aren’t communicating crews might get doubled booked, materials might get dropped and there’s no one there to unload it. If salesmen aren’t communicating they may knock too many of the same doors, call the same property managers, and make no progress. But if everyone communicates on at least a base level, it can eliminate a lot of that confusion. Talking with other project managers and planning schedules together can make sure there are always crews available. Coordinating with the other salesmen on the best way to attack a neighborhood can mean you’ll get more jobs, and not bother people by knocking on their door twice. Keeping yourself up-to-date with what is happening with other projects and other employees can solve problems before they start, and keep the company running flawlessly.

Improves Customer Service

Similar to communicating to avoid confusion, communicating with other coworkers can help improve company customer service as whole. If a project manager is on vacation, and the insurance company calls, someone else can help them if they have been talking with their coworkers and keeping tabs on their projects. If more people know what is happening with certain projects, anyone can help when problems arise. The more people that can help with problems, the better your customer service will be, which is likely to lead to referrals and good reviews from happy clients.

Fuels Accountability

Autonomy is awesome because it means making your own schedule and having more control over how you do your work. But it can also be easy to get behind, put things off, and let things slip through the cracks when you are the only one responsible for you. Communicating with coworkers and managers frequently fuels accountability; if you know someone is going to be checking-up, you want to have everything done. Whether it is asking about scheduling, following-up on a question, or passing on paperwork, if someone else is going to be asking you about your projects, you want to be prepared to answer them. Communicating doesn’t mean tracking schedules and taking away autonomy, but is a way to make sure that the people working alone are still doing all the work that they need to do.

Best Practices For Training New Hires

By | Contractors | No Comments

Having a good system for training new employees is essential to keeping them at a company. Training new hires helps them embrace the culture, methods, and goals of the company so that they can be highly effective in their new role. A lot of companies, especially in the construction sector, train quickly; with the goal being for the new employee to be on their own as soon as possible, but taking the time to slow down and train them properly will be more effective for both you and the new employee in the end. Below we will dive into a few tried and true best practices for training new hires that, if used, will help your company and your new employees thrive.

Have A System

One of the biggest ways to make your training effective is to have a system; take the time to sit down with relevant parties to new hires and let everyone give their input on what needs to be taught for each department. This information can then be compiled and organized into a system for training new hires that will allow them to gain the most training and knowledge necessary to do their job well. Having a system means that each and every new employee gets all the information that they need without it being extra work for current employees; the system sets everyone up for success by ensuring all relevant information is given to new hires as soon as they start.  Using a set system also makes it easier for you to identify gaps in training, and allows you see where changes can be made to make new and current employees more effective at their jobs.

Use The Right People

Some people are good teachers, and some people just aren’t. Even people who are really good at their jobs aren’t always awesome at explaining it to others. When you are deciding who will be training new hires, you want to pick the people who are good teachers and who don’t mind taking the time to show someone how everything works. You want to use the people who can thoroughly explain and outline how task works, but also someone who makes the trainee feel welcome and understands that there will be a learning curve. Questions are essential in the learning process, so having people who can and are willing to answer questions is important because it will help the new hire learn faster and ensure that they are fully understanding all the tasks required of them in their new position.