What a Great Construction Management Company / Client Relationship Looks Like
If it’s your first new build, you probably will go into the process with quite a few questions. There are the ones your contractor can answer, of course; When is the estimated date of completion? How much will this run me? But there also are the ones your contractor can’t answer objectively—take, for example, if their behavior is a sign of good client treatment, is simply industry standard, or a pretty fair indication that you’re the last item on their priority list.
This makes knowing if you’ve got a quality Minnesota commercial construction company quite difficult. Sure, your commercial construction team may be able to logically justify their behavior when asked about it, but how do you know that you’re being treated as you should be without prior industry knowledge?
We at KBS Companies, as a Minnesota local construction company, are here to make the building process as straightforward as we can for you. Below, we’ll share a few indications that your relationship with your commercial construction company is not only satisfactory, but spectacular.
Of course, this entails the obvious things that any business, not just a construction company, should do for its clients. Dates of importance should be made clear to the client, and any changes to them communicated immediately. Financials should be made transparent as they grow and change with the project, and any questions should be answered honestly—even if it’s not an answer the client may like to hear.
Expect no less than straightforwardness and integrity from your commercial construction team. You deserve nothing less.
A Note on Jargon
Like any field, the commercial construction industry has its fair share of specialized terms—field specific lingo, if you will. While there are certainly occasions where no other term will do, your commercial construction company should take care to minimize using this jargon while in consultation with you.
Not only is it alienating to the client, but on a more practical note it completely eliminates the possibility for clear communication. How can you two stay on the same page when only one knows the meaning of what’s being said?
The Client’s Communication Expectations Should Be Met
A key part in a healthy client / commercial construction relationship is the establishment and meeting of communication expectations.
Good construction companies will let their client know how frequently they can expect to hear from them for updates on their build, as well as when they’re reachable and when they aren’t. This helps to create a sense of security for the client, but it also helps the commercial construction company stay on top of communications and not be overrun by customers contacting them at all hours.
The client will also know what phone number, email address, or app they can expect the contractor to reach them on, as well as who their number-one liaison is and when certain pieces of information are due. In short: you should know what to expect as far as communication goes from the first consultation onward.
No commercial construction company wants to deliver bad news to a client, and no client wants to deliver bad news to the company. In short, nobody likes making waves, but sometimes in the commercial construction industry, it’s necessary—and it’s necessary to take accountability for those waves, both for the client and the builder.
In construction, sometimes things don’t go as planned, and the faster and more honestly either party owns up to their role in it, the quicker a solution should be found. It’s important to note, though, that accountability does not eliminate negligence or carelessness on the part of the commercial contractor, but if you’ve got a good one, they won’t need to be accountable for anything other than their stellar work.
Contractors Should Cultivate the Relationship
The construction industry is stereotyped as cold and industrial, but when it comes to client / contractor relations, things should be anything but.
Your contractor has a responsibility to establish trust, credibility, and a positive working relationship throughout your time together. This is, of course, accomplished by accountability and clear communication, but it’s by and large created in the little things—like how your contractor speaks to you and the care they take to listen to your needs. You’re paying them, after all, not the other way around.
If your gut says you deserve better treatment, you’re probably right. Anything other than warmth, understanding, and flexibility is a sign that this positive relationship is not being forged, and the contractor is unlikely to care about its clients.
KBS Companies: Comprehensive Commercial Construction Experts
From choosing building products to the actual commercial construction, we work intimately with every step of the building process to give our customers the dream build they deserve. Give our Plainview office a call today at 507-534-3855, or our Rochester location at 507-287-3264.