By Renée Biery

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Add-on’s, renovations, and new construction homes can seem intimidating to take on. How do you even get started? How do you find and manage contractors? What surprises should you anticipate coming up? How long do these things take?

In this podcast, you will learn all that and so much more!

How to Manage the Logistics Required to Running a Smooth Project

What you will learn in this episode: 

  • Logistics of communicating with your clients

  • Logistics of managing the trades, purchases, and deliveries on your projects

  • Logistics in managing yourself

Today’s topic is all about logistics and how to manage a project successfully from beginning to end. 

I know your designs are also important, and if you are focused on them, you think some bumps in the renovation side will go unnoticed. But why should you bank on that when if you manage a project through the logistics that every project has, you can actually win on both ends? Both the amazing designs that you have created, as well as the contractor’s and the client’s experience they have working with you. The experience is what will be remembered. 

Logistics are honestly a total pain in the ass. There are so many moving pieces that need to be monitored, addressed, set up, and rescheduled, and all of that can dictate how the week will go on every single project. 

Firstly you have the client.

There is a lot of communicating with your client and walking them through the obstacles they will be experiencing on a daily basis with their project. The daily interruptions, the mess, and the loss of space, and how their project will essentially be affecting their life for however long the project takes. 

I can’t say enough how clear and transparent you need to be with a client in the beginning. 

Now, the other thing to discuss with your clients are the trades coming and going. There are times they may show up at the same time every day. Or sometimes, maybe a little later due to an emergency call they received. Some days, nobody comes, so you need to let the client know all of these things.  

There can be situations where you need to let someone in the door. Maybe your client is gone, and they aren’t comfortable leaving their door unlocked. That can be a secondary-level situation that has to be contended with. And you will be managing those comings and goings on an even more granular basis which takes time and energy to accomplish. 

The second component of the logistics that you will be managing is the trades. 

That goes without saying. The guys have to come and go to do the work. You’ll need to be scheduling them unless there is a contractor doing that. But more often than not, on the smaller projects, the designer is in charge of scheduling or maybe sharing it 50-50 with the contractor. Personalities are something a designer needs to be aware of and manage successfully as well. You will get everything from an introvert who just wants to come in and the work and then leave to someone who comes in and wants to talk more than work. If the tradesmen aren’t happy, then they won’t show up to do their work because they won’t be happy being there. So managing these personalities correctly is key. 

And then thirdly, and one that may seem very obvious, you have to manage the logistics of the purchases and deliveries. 

This can be an absolute nightmare! Especially because of COVID and the supply chain issues that we are still suffering through. 

Then you also have to consider who will be there to meet the delivery, and if someone calls off, who will replace them if you have a large object to carry in – all while keeping it looking seamless and easy to the client. 

Then lastly, and most importantly, how you manage yourself. 

You likely are working on more than one project, so you’ve got this craziness going on in multiple places at multiple times at different stages. Then God forbid, you have a life of your own. So that’s where you need to make sure you are allotting enough time for these projects. It’s not just about the design. It’s not just about individual site meetings. It is a lot of work in between all of those stages to get a project running smoothly. 

So take the time to figure out where you are and where you need to be, and make a plan to get there more smoothly than you have been. The success of a project is truly measured by how smoothly it runs. I know this is a lot to take on, so please feel free to reach out to me if you need anything clarified or expanded upon!

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