Builders Insurance – Essential Tool in Construction Industry

Fatalities in construction industry are common. Construction workers, business owners and even general public are always at risk of accidents at construction sites. Not only the people are at risk, there are many chances of material and machinery damage.These unwanted issues at construction sites can be very burdensome for builders, contractors or business owners. These issues can cost them thousands of pounds. Therefore, it is essential for a builder or contractor to have something in hand that can save him from this financial burden.Builders insurance policy: Builders insurance is a broad term covering all kinds of risks associated with the construction business such as death, injury or material damage. A comprehensive package covers all individual insurance policies like public liability insurance, employee liability insurance, machinery insurance, and personal accident insurance for each of the above risks as they all are covered under a single policy.Here, we will discuss about the potential risks at construction site and how a tailor-made builders insurance policy helps in each case.Construction sites – risky work locations: Constructing a facility is not a one day task or a one man job. It takes many days of work, requires huge man power and wide range of machinery. As people work at elevated heights, handling heavy and dangerous equipment, their lives are always in danger. Every worker including the owner of the company and the neighbors are vulnerable to accidents at construction site.Workers are prone to injuries and accidents: Workers and other employees working at a construction site are at risk of accidents and injuries. As their work involves manual labor and critical machines, they are highly prone to injuries and disablement or sometimes death. Since the employees are injured at work, employer is liable to pay related medical expenses and other costs. In such cases, having employers liability insurance helps the owner in paying the cost of the claim.Building activities could injure/kill public: Not only the workers, but other people who are not related to the business such as neighbors, visitors, clients, etc., present in and around the site can fall victims to the accidents at construction sites. They can sue the owner for this unfortunate incident. In such cases, public liability insurance saves the policy holder from the related unexpected expenses like medical costs, etc.Material and machinery damage: Material and machinery damage may occur due to a natural calamity or human error or during transit. Moreover, as the materials and machinery used at construction sites are costly, they are often prone to thefts. Companies or builders having builders all risks insurance or machinery insurance can effectively face these situations as they can repurchase the material or machinery using the reimbursed amount. These policies provide cover for the equipment used at the construction site.Personal accidents may keep owners away from work: Having a personal accident insurance policy is very important, especially for the builders, since they spend most of their time on the risky construction sites. As an owner, one cannot sue his own company and file for a compensation claim when he gets injured at construction site. Thus, personal insurance policy helps builders or contractors to protect themselves from such incidents. This is highly useful for business owners, partners and company directors.All the above mentioned policies are essential for every builder as they are effective in covering all the possible risks and damages. However, it is better to approach a reputed insurance brokerage firm to find your exact requirements. He will offer impartial advise and will also help you in renewal process.

Is the Organization Managed or Led?

This is a really important question these days since the understanding of management and leadership has gotten so distorted that the terms are used synonymously. The result is that most managers think they are leaders when they definitely are not.So what is the difference and why is it important? There is a clear difference between managing and leading, and the effect it has on an organization is dramatic.Virtually anyone who reads and studies this article will be able to tell what kind of organization they are dealing with after a very short time. You will also know how to deal with that organization more effectively.The first thing to look for is organizational growth. Managed organizations tend to grow quickly and then plateau. Organizations with strong leadership grow more slowly, but keep on growing.So the goals of the organization can be a good indicator as to whether it is managed or led.I am working with an organization right now that is having very fast growth. They are hiring managers in several states to run their rapidly growing facilities. They don’t have time to train their managers, so they hire people with the skills they need today.An important point for this discussion is, “You manage things and lead people.”My client is hiring people to run their various offices – managers. Managers assure that the day-to-day operations are carried out.A management-oriented company is easier to expand at the outset since you hire people with known skills to manage the organization.You get a faster return since the manager hits the ground running. And it seems logical to hire managers when you need them.As a brief side note here I want to mention micromanagers. These are people who manage too much. They control virtually everything, allowing no one to function independently. In most cases, a micromanager should not have people working for them since they do everything anyway. (The one exception to this rule in my opinion is a surgeon. I want him to be in total control when he is working on me.)I am not downplaying the importance of management; every organization must have managers to function. So every organization will have people performing a management role. This does not mean that every organization will have effective leadership, however.I see this most clearly in sales management. Sales managers, for the most part, over see the day to day operations of a sale department, establish sales goals, and work with Marketing to co-ordinate activities. Rarely, if ever, do sales managers focus on developing people. I don’t consider an annual sales training class as a people development program.And this is where the real difference comes in. Leadership, not management, is required if an organization is going to experience sustained, long-term growth.One of the most important actions that a leader takes is to hire people based predominantly on character traits. That is, leaders hire people who possess the character traits that underscore the values of the organization and help it grow over the long run. They know and understand the rule, “Hire by character traits. You can teach skills.”This obviously takes longer, so would not be practical for my fast-growing client. However, the downside to their situation is that they are not developing the next generation of managers, or more importantly, developing leaders. They have hired for skill-sets only, with little concern for character traits. They will soon hit a wall to growth and not know how to get over it unless they start creating and grooming leaders.One other problem organizations face when hiring by skill-set alone is interpersonal conflict. When you don’t take character traits into consideration you can find that you may have people who can manage but don’t necessarily fit in. The single biggest reason people leave companies is due to interpersonal problems. This is an expensive situation many companies seem to face continuously.Now, let’s look at what my client will be doing to solve this dilemma.The most important thing they did was to recognize that they need to develop a team from within the organization to avoid many of the problems they could face in the future.They now understand the difference between management and leadership, and want to focus on leadership. However, they still are hiring managers due to the rapid growth.This company is lucky in that they have a core group of senior managers who are good potential leaders. They just need to be trained, and that is relatively easy.The first thing I did was to get the team together and explain that they will now have a dual role – management of resources and operations, and leadership of people.Leaders develop people, set the standards of performance, and focus on achieving the long term goals of the organization.The next thing we did was select potential leaders within the organization in whom they will begin the grooming process.As you can see, this requires planning and time – not something that an organization focused solely on management will do.Leadership requires skills development, mentoring, training, delegation, patience, and a whole host of other well thought-out actions that are over and above simply running the day to day operations of the organization.The most difficult aspect of leadership is that is doesn’t have an immediate return which is hard to accept in our society where short term thinking is a way of life.The nice thing about leadership is that it is easy to assimilate into any organization if the senior level people wish to do so. And the rewards are usually beyond all expectations.Lead well,Bill [email protected]© copyright 2008 WJ Truax

Why Project Time Management Is Your Defense Against Delay and Disruption

When the timely completion of a construction project or a project stage is at risk or has failed, the result is disruption or chaos, and this has been the subject of many lawsuits for many years. Delay and Disruption disputes are often centred on time issues. The CIOB has reported its findings that projects that suffer from disputes about delay also suffer from poor time control. So it would seem that good project time management would be an essential element of any construction programme.Project Time Management is too often neglectedThis is not often the case. Of the issues that commonly determine project success, cost, quality and time, time is the least understood and least often managed with the support of formal models, benchmarks or tools. Managing project timings seems to sit in the shadows of successful project management. Where, for example, Quantity Surveying is a specific and recognised discipline, with professional bodies that govern performance and advise on techniques, there are no such bodies for the time-related aspects. Time management is often viewed as simply a feature of the project management software. But if we don’t lend greater priority to managing time, then time-related issues, such as delays, will have a disproportionate impact when they go wrong.Put a strategy in place for managing time on projectsHaving a strategy in place for training and tools that improve project time management will bring immediate and long-term rewards; good time management in construction project management is key to minimising the risk of a delay and disruption claim. Managing time using tailored and developed time management software is a powerful weapon in the arsenal of any construction company’s best practices. It is a discipline that brings with it a trail of evidence and auditable records that can be used to stand up in any law case and minimises the risk of even getting that far in first place by encouraging best practice and mitigating risk.Pick the tool with Project Time Management capabilitiesThe effects of poor time management relate to every size of project, but the more complex a project the more disproportionate are the effects and impacts of time. So having the backup of strong project management information systems that can show how plans may have adapted throughout the course of a project to cope with deviations provides a strong defensive tool for when things go awry.Choosing the right project management solution is essential. The time management tools embedded in software for managing construction projects, regardless of complexity, are much more capable than the simplistic time management models which are designed to improve personal productivity. They are fundamental to the contractor’s productivity and the effective management of its entire supply chain. They are also necessary for the building of a strong reputation for good project time management, which is essential within an industry long suffering from delay and disruption issues, and will create a distinct competitive edge for the contractor.