You need to take time at the start of a job to plan so you can keep to a job’s schedule and the budget. But the Production department almost always feels like they’re under the gun at the start and just want to get to work. Even with a schedule, something unexpected almost always happens and throws the whole thing off.
It’s frustrating, and it’s easy to throw up your hands and give up on planning — it takes up too much time at the beginning of the job and it seems like it never works. That’s why you need to plan for the unexpected at the beginning, says Dave Wittig.
In this episode, Dave talks to Tim and Steve about spotting potential problems and building in contingencies in your job planning and scheduling.
Dave is a Project Manager with Adams & Beasley Associates in Carlisle, MA. He’s been with the company for almost two years, working on high-end residential remodels mostly within Boston. One of his projects recently won a Builders and Remodelers Association of Greater Boston Prism Gold Award.
Because most of his projects take place in the downtown core of a major city, logistics, deliveries, and parking add to his planning and scheduling headaches. But learning to spot the red flags and make allowances in his schedule for them helps. “When I hear an ‘if,’ I know there’s going to be a problem,” he says. He tells you how to stay flexible within the structure of a schedule, by building in contingencies, as well as:
- The value of working backwards to fill in gaps
- Working with your team to nail the details
- Getting buy-in
- Tapping others’ knowledge and experience to forecast problems
- Not painting the rosy picture
- Why you need a whiteboard on-site
- And much more…
It’s not the hiccups in the job that get things off track, says Dave. It’s how you react to them that will make or break the schedule.
Have a Production Superstar?
If one or more of your Production pros has a skillset, system, or solution that should be highlighted on the podcast, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. We’d love to have them on the show.
Did You Know There are Roundtables For Production Managers?
Developed by show host, Tim Faller, this special Roundtables™ Group Program for Production Managers focuses on all aspects of production management including: People Management, Training, Technology and Customer Service. For more information, click here or contact Tim directly.