Crew Size is Key

August 14, 2018

 One drawback of small crews on large properties is they cannot complete the work fast enough.  They spend too much time on-site, or do not get the job done on time.  One answer to that problem is increasing the crew size.  All that is needed is a crew-cab truck and a few more snow pushers.  You should be able to send as many as six people to one property and “knock it out”, then move on to the next site.  Large crews are fun to work with.  They appeal to the social side of our nature, making it easy to build enthusiasm.  Large crews make the members feel safe and secure.  They feel as though there are enough of “us” to get it done.

                             

Production managers and snow removal customers like large crews because absenteeism does not cripple the production effort.  Supervisors (especially non producing supervisors) like a lot of people to look after.  It makes them feel needed.  Crew members like large crews.  It is like being on a team.  You don’t feel the pressure to produce.  They have more freedom to do the things they enjoy as long as they keep busy.  Property owners/managers love big crews!!  They are taught in property management school that the more people running around their property the better !!  They sometimes demand contractors “get more people” on the job and “get it done”!!

 

Crews working a specific route are often sized to fit the largest property.   Crews seem to grow almost by themselves.  Supervisors and production managers often add one member as ‘insurance’ against anything going wrong.  This is a sign of mismanagement, not efficiency.  Everyone likes large crews except the person responsible for profit.  In some cases he (or she) does not know that large crews (with more than 3 people) are the problem rather than the solution.  They blame people, the pricing system, or the weather for the production crisis that is reducing profits. 

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John Allin Consulting

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