A tight timetable, high quality standards and legal pitfalls pose demanding tasks for managers and leaders

Project background:
A construction company (250 employees) from the German state of Saxony-Anhalt observed that there were systematic differences in the performance results of different site managers and work crews. We worked together with the company to analyze the situation and discovered that it was the individual managers' ideas of management and management responsibility that was making the difference.
The goal of the project was to raise the leadership qualities of all senior managers closer to the level of the top performers.
As always, one of the specifications for the project was, of course, to keep both the costs and the amount of time the senior managers were away from their posts to an absolute minimum.

On the basis of observations and interviews, the project team determined the prime learning goals:

  1. That each manager knows his or her own areas of responsibility and feels a commitment to that responsibility
  2. That managers know exactly how their performance is measured, and strive to continuously improve this performance
  3. That managers have precise knowledge of their duties regarding construction planning and coordination
  4. That managers have precise knowledge of their duties regarding their management of employees
  5. That managers have the skills and abilities to perform their duties.

The program consisted of three courses in all:

  1. Training for site managers and division managers
  2. Training for foremen and team leaders
  3. Coaching services for special challenges

Training for the managers took place in three two-day blocks:

The starting point in terms of learning content was the responsibility of the managers in the four areas:

  • Financial responsibility (cost- and profit-orientation)
  • Responsibility for customer goals and customer referrals
  • Responsibility for high quality and streamlined processes
  • Responsibility for the motivation and qualification of employees

We compiled the duties of the managers using our "Management Cube", which allows the employees to systematize all their management duties and to conduct an easy target-performance comparison for their respective fields.
Then, using specific case scenarios, the managers practiced their handling of management duties and management tools.

Measured key performance indicators showed that the average performance results rose significantly, especially in terms of processes and customer satisfaction. There was also a clear increase in employee satisfaction.
Training for the foremen took place in two blocks and concentrated primarily on clarifying the possibilities for influencing quality and processes, and training the necessary skills.