Construction work may appear to be straightforward, but you should remember that it is a mentally and physically challenging career. There are plenty of traits and skills that construction workers have to possess in order to be good and successful at their work. There are different kinds of working conditions and tasks in construction jobs, from operating heavy equipment in rough weather to navigating hazardous heights and tight spaces. However, the pacing and rewards of this career can be quite rewarding for many professionals. The modern construction worker requires a mix of physical endurance, technical knowledge and effective communication skills.
Listed below are some important skills that you need to land a job in construction:
Endurance and physical strength
It shouldn’t be surprising that a job in construction is physically demanding. Considerable stamina and strength is essential for carrying out the different tasks on a job site. Nearly 50% of construction jobs require physical strength and heavy lifting. Hence, workers need to have proper form and posture for safely and effectively conducting manual labor, both outdoors and indoors.
Engineering and building knowledge
Technical knowledge is just as vital as physical strength. According to Patrick Shin, nearly 36% of contractors fail because of inexperience and lack of adequate training with particular types of work. Familiarity with tools and materials is needed for filling a wide range of construction services. Some skills that workers need to have include plumbing, masonry, demolition, HVAC, masonry, framing, power tools, roofing and renovations.
Hand-eye coordination and dexterity
Hand-eye coordination and dexterity are also a must for construction workers. Construction work involves lying, sitting and standing for long hours. Limb coordination is required for moving both arms and legs accurately and quickly in any environment. Excellent eyesight is also mandatory in construction work. Skilled workers should be able to see dials and gauges for operating equipment properly, examine details at far and close range and be able to read documents.
One of the most essential construction skills is communication. 48% of construction rework happens due to poor communication. When working on the job site, the workers have to be able to communicate directions, decisions and questions to their team, along with crafting documents, reports and emails.
Strong math and reading skills
There is not just manual labor involved in construction work. A working knowledge of geometry, algebra and math for calculating building materials, determining necessary adjustments and keeping track of measurements. Reading is also a crucial skill to have because you have to interpret blueprints and read plenty of documentation.
Along with these skills, construction workers should also have experience with technology, a willingness to learn, organization and teamwork, problem-solving and decision-making skills, leadership and customer service.