In order to be successful in our calling, we must constantly improve. All those who think that what they learned back in the days while attending college are enough will soon be overtaken by others. Every profession is constantly changing and improving, and that is why we must follow what is new and always educate ourselves so that we can continue to do our job properly.
And it is especially necessary to constantly improve and learn new things if your profession is as complex as construction project manager. In just one construction project, you have more responsibility than someone has in their entire working life. You are responsible for a lot of lives and for a very large amount of money invested in that project. Precisely because everything is so complex and demanding, there are books written by experts in this field and will help you be a better manager. That way you will make more money and you will not be in a situation where you are responsible for a catastrophic event that took place on the construction site.
“Construction Management Jumpstart” – Barbara J. Jackson
Whatever college or course you complete, no degree guarantees that you will know everything. And often fundamental things are exactly what you miss to learn in college. That’s why you need to read the “Construction Management Jumpstart” book written by Barbara J. Jackson, one of the leading authority in this field. Her career is very rich and she is the Director of the California Center for Construction Education and a Professor of Construction Management at California Polytechnic State University, so she is very authoritative on this topic. First of all, this book will allow you to gain insight into every step of the whole project, which is very important, because it will complete your theoretical knowledge and you will know what awaits you. You will also be able to read about different technological advancements. Although this book is primarily intended for beginners, we advise everyone to read it.
“Construction Scheduling: Principles and Practices” – Jay Newitt
Good organization and planning are key to success in any business, especially in the construction business where so many people and tasks you have to organize to function simultaneously. Precisely because it is necessary for you to learn how to plan every detail in the project, this book will be of great importance to you. By reading this book, you will learn how to make a schedule for everything from the beginning to the very end of the project, but that is not the only thing you will learn from this book. In it you will find explanations on how to use the various software that is necessary for every construction manager. Some of the software you will be able to read about are Microsoft Project, SureTrak and many others. It will also make it easier for you to understand how other software like Jonas Premier, which you need to be able to successfully manage everything, work.
“Construction Project Management – A Practical Guide to Field Construction Management” – Glenn A. Sears Richard H. Clough, S. Keoki Sears
As the title of this book says, this is an unavoidable read for all construction project managers. However, we must emphasize that this is primarily a book intended for more experienced managers, because it mostly talks about very complex methods. Inside you will find a guide on different types of projects, and what is especially good is that they are all real-life projects, which are analyzed in detail. Such case studies will best help you understand the application of different methods. Be prepared for a lot of technical terms, so if you are not familiar with everything, look for a specialized dictionary. You will also come across different color illustrations that will make it even easier for you to understand this complex topic.
“Managing the Profitable Construction Business: The Contractor’s Guide to Success and Survival Strategies” – John M. Murdough, Kenneth T. Sullivan, Thomas C. Schleifer
Often the extensive knowledge we have is not enough for us to be successful in our business. That is why it is necessary to learn to do everything with confidence, because only then will you be able to use your knowledge in the right way. If you have had experience in the construction business, you know how rough it is, where you will face a variety of problems. That is why it is very important to learn to recognize potential problems in time. This book will help you with that, and you will also better understand how to handle employees. Learn how to punish someone and how to reward them, because that will further motivate people. In addition, you will learn the basics of accounting and profitability calculation, so we can say that this book is one of the most comprehensive guides on this topic. The decades of experience that the three writers have will make your job much easier.
“Running a Successful Construction Company (For Pros, By Pros)” – David Gerstel
What is particularly interesting is that the author of this book, David Gerstel, is self-taught. He will explain in detail the methods he devised and used to become one of the leaders in this industry. Mr Gerstel is one of the most respected experts and most successful people when it comes to the construction world, and he does not have an MBA degree. He will show you that this is actually a very unpredictable business and that is why you do not need an MBA, but experience and constant improvement of knowledge. Through his case studies you will get to know the different challenges that will be in front of you, and after reading the book you will know how to solve them when they arise.
Here are 5 books you must read if you want to be a successful manager. And once you read them all, keep looking for titles to help you improve. Only such thinking can lead you to success.