Stress is a leading cause of human illness and disease. Many doctors’ visits are from stress related ailments. Stress increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Stressed people often overeat, or eat unhealthy foods. Many stressed people lose sleep every night which leads to poor productivity at work. Stress can reduce grey matter in the brain leading to future psychiatric problems. Stressed people spend much of their time worrying, so their day-to-day tasks become neglected. Stressed people can become fearful of making decisions. Stress can cause people to become short-tempered, sometimes even becoming irrational. It’s not pleasant working for a stressed manager, or with a stressed co-worker. Stress leads to more stress.
Surely these are enough reasons to make the average project manager take steps to lessen the stress on their project?
How can we lessen stress on our projects?
Visiting some projects, and dealing with some project managers can be exhausting. There seem to be a permanent situation of crisis, people are shouting, almost a note of panic, there are people on the phone, changes of plan, begging and pleading. Then there are other project managers that, almost casually, get on with the job. Why are some project managers always solving crises while others go about their jobs quietly and calmly, simply getting tasks done? Is it because some projects are not as tough as others? Well, some projects are tougher than others, but it is often only about the way the project manager operates. Yes, that calm project manager will sometimes hit a problem, they may get a bit excited, they may work late sometimes, and they may have to pull in some favours from suppliers and subcontractors, but it’s not the norm.
How can we destress our lives and projects?
Construction is difficult, it is stressful, things will go wrong, people will let us down, clients will be unreasonable. But we often make our jobs more stressful. We create extra problems. We take on extra work we shouldn’t. We don’t delegate. We don’t plan and we are disorganised.
Take a step back and look at how you are managing your project. What can you do differently? What can you change? Don’t let stress send you to an early grave. A less stressed you will be a more efficient you, and a more pleasant person for your colleagues and your family.
Is your project stressing you out? Why? What can you change?
This article is adapted from information in the author’s popular books: 'Successful Construction Project Management: The Practical Guide' and 'Building a Successful Construction Company: The Practical Guide' and 'Construction Project Management: Tips and Insights'
'Construction Claims: A Short Guide for Contractors' is another of Paul's useful books. These books are available on Amazon and other online book stores.
Paul publishes articles regularly on LinkedIn and his website.
Paul writes regular articles for other websites, gives lectures, mentors, and is available for podcasts and interviews.
© 2017 This article is not to be reproduced for commercial purposes without written permission from the author.
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Copyright 2016 - The attached articles cannot be reproduced for commercial purposes without the consent of the author.
The opinions expressed in the attached articles are those of the writer. It should be noted that projects are varied and different laws and restrictions apply which depend on the location of the contractor and the project. It's important that the reader uses the supplied information taking cognisance of their particular circumstances. The writer assumes no responsibility or liability for any loss of any kind arising from the reader using the information or advice contained herein.
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