What’s the first career you think of when you think ‘amazing job’? What about the first three careers?
When people come up with lists of ‘amazing jobs’, construction work doesn’t usually make the cut at all. The list will usually have professions like ‘investor’, ‘model’, ‘actor’, ‘influencer’, and ‘popstar’ – perhaps even ‘reality TV star’ the way the world is going. However, you shouldn’t let looks deceive you: construction workers are actually among the happiest workers in America.
You can’t deny that construction work is a tough job. It takes an abundance of skills, smarts, experience, common sense, and is incredibly physically demanding on top of all of that. Not everybody has what it takes to be a skillful construction worker. You’d be forgiven for thinking that these workers are super stressed, but many of them actually love the work that they do and can’t wait to show up at work each day.
Why Are Construction Workers So Happy?
Studies showed that the two main reasons construction workers loved going to work were as follows: because of their colleagues, and because they enjoy completing their projects.
Around 34% of the happiest employees said that their colleagues helped workplace satisfaction. This is an industry known for strong connections and great relationships – after all, when communication needs to be absolutely spotless to complete a construction job, it has to be!
You might just think that this is a roundabout way of construction workers saying that they like seeing their friends at work, but they also enjoy the challenges and responsibilities they get to deal with each day, and the problems they must solve. In fact, 19% of employees said they were excited about their current work and projects.
This just goes to show that not only is working with people you like a huge motivator but an environment in which you can put your skills and knowledge to the test.
Is There Anything That Can Be Improved On In The Construction Industry?
While construction workers tend to be a happy bunch with a lot of positive things to say, no construction business is perfect. There are always going to be things that managers can improve on to make things run even smoother. You can’t just expect your employees to be happy because the stats said so, without actually doing anything to make it true for you!
Managerial support is one of the top-cited things that make employees dislike their work. A negative relationship with their supervisor meant that employees became dissatisfied with their roles. Many stated that their managers communicated poorly and did not make time for the team. This just goes to show how important building relationships and connecting with the team is as a whole. Communication and support will make a big difference in any industry, even construction. Just because you may view construction workers as ‘tough’, does not mean they don’t need appropriate support and encouragement from their bosses.
Using construction management software could help to create better communication with fewer misunderstandings, but you should also work on sharpening up your communication skills in person. Being able to articulate what you need and ensure the other person is on the same page is a great skill to have, both in your personal and professional life.
If you tend to show little interest in employee welfare, this could be another reason your team becomes dissatisfied. If your team feels like you don’t really care about what happens to them, they will quickly become complacent and won’t want to put their all into projects for you.
By implementing safety manuals and holding meetings, you can make sure that everybody is on board with the correct procedures, and that your team knows you care about their safety. In fact, consider asking your team how you can improve on what you’re doing. They will likely venture some answers, and if they don’t, you could always find an anonymous way of getting feedback.
Follow up with people on their ideas, and let them know that you listened, even if you don’t go with an idea fully. Some simple happy hour ideas for work could ensure you’re nurturing those all-important relationships for satisfaction – and don’t neglect to get involved in them yourself.
Things To Remember
The following things will ensure you won’t forget what’s important when you’re heading a construction team:
- Appreciation is crucial – construction workers want what every other employee wants: appreciation. As a manager, showing your appreciation is essential. Your team will always be happier at work when they feel appreciated.
- Encourage chit chat – this isn’t school. Don’t discourage chatter. Your team needs intellectual stimulation to while away the hours as they work hard.
- Create a workplace your team can be proud of – feeling proud of your job and the company you work for is a great feeling. Construction is already a great job to have: you build the infrastructure on which society operates. You build roads, hospitals, offices, houses, and more. Cultivate a sense of pride within your company culture that encourages your team to feel good about what they do and enjoy the workplace all the more.
- Never underestimate the power of your team – belief in your team and they’ll work hard for you. When your team feels happy and connected, and you add in that appreciation and belief, you will get incredible results that dwarf your competitors.
Construction may not be an easy job, but it’s an honorable job. If you make sure you allow your team to build solid connections, show your appreciation, listen to them, and even challenge them to test their ability, you will love how your business transforms.
Construction workers have the potential to be the happiest in America, but certainly not if you’re a bad manager or boss. Work on your communication skills and look at yourself before blaming others for issues. Always aim to grow and improve, and your construction business will thrive!