Kathy Wells is the editor of Construction Business Owner magazine.
In Part I of “The Project Manager’s MBA” webinar series, speaker and FMI consultant Gregg Schoppman discussed methods for employing MBA-caliber knowledge on your projects. Schoppman, who once worked as a general contractor in Florida, holds an MBA from the University of Tampa and specializes in the areas of construction productivity and project management. Hundreds of business owners, management staff and project managers attended the free webinar to take a deeper look into fundamental MBA concepts including finance and accounting, organizational behavior and ethics.
In today’s construction industry, it’s no secret that the war for talent is raging. And, if business owners can’t find the right new hires for their management team, they are faced with the need to develop leaders in-house—and honing a high degree of business sense is paramount to their success. Part I helped business owners understand fundamental MBA principles and how to employ them to teach, train and develop PMs and seniors managers to become future leaders.
Turning PMs into strong business managers means developing leadership skills and increasing business focus. Business owners should take it upon themselves to provide PMs with the skills to advance and add further value to the organization. It’s also important to maintain a balance between an employee’s talents in building/construction/engineering and business management, and to understand the conditions of walking that line. Some employees may be great builders, but that’s not always enough to become the company’s next generation of senior management.
Live poll feedback from participants during Part I revealed several insights into the importance of developing managers. A poll regarding important topics asked attendees to prioritize MBA subjects for their project managers. Poll results found the highest percentage of respondents noted that finance & accounting (39.1%) was the most important topic for their project managers to work on, with management (34%) and operations (26.2%) coming in second and third, respectively.
Polling in Part I also revealed, with overwhelming response, that the most important ethical subject in most firms was developing processes for employees and upholding process integrity (60.5%). Building and maintaining process integrity typically falls to senior management teams, and in order to succeed, PMs need basic business knowledge to properly execute this task.
For more information on Part I and how your company can start developing leaders, click here to watch the playback and learn more.
Next month, CBO and Viewpoint Construction Software partner to bring the construction industry another free opportunity to gain education through a new round of coursework. Moving forward in this two-part series, “ The Project Manager’s MBA, Part II ” will again explore methods for applying fundamental MBA practices for practical use in day-to-day construction operations. This time, we’ll cover:
- Operations management
These vital business topics, based on the core curriculum of the nation’s most prominent MBA programs, can provide the education you need to help you continue to develop managers in your firm. The live, online event, “The Project Manager’s MBA, Part II,” will take place Feb. 17 at 1 p.m. EST. Registration is free at constructionbusinessowner.com/webinars.
After the presentation, attendees are encouraged to stick around for a Q&A session to ask questions that apply to their real-life business management situations. Do you have great builders lacking basic business knowledge? Or PMs with great existing business sense that needs further development? Construction businesses of tomorrow will require an exceptional blend of great builders and great businesspeople, and it’s up to you to make sure those people are working for your company. Sign up to join us on Feb. 17 and see how you can gain the guidance to create leaders and legacies for your firm’s future.