What to Do When Crunch Time Goes Wrong

What to Do When Crunch Time Goes Wrong

Aug 4, 2015

What-to-Do-When-Crunch-Time-Goes-WrongWritten by: Lyle Charles Consulting

Any commercial construction project will need to stick to very tight deadlines if the project is to come in under budget, but project managers can’t control every aspect. Permits, for instance, are the mercy of the review process. If there is a problem at any point in the project schedule, workers have to scramble to make sure things get done properly.

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The first instinct of project managers is to add overtime hours to the project, but this may not be the best approach. If workers have been working long hours leading up to crunch time, they may not be as sharp and acute. If they happen to slip or drop tools, that could injure someone else or themselves. It is sometimes more cost-effective to bring additional help onto the site.


Construction delay claims try to sort out who is responsible for a delay, because those delays cost money. Every change to a plan, order unfulfilled or worker who calls out contributes to this ever growing list of potential problems. It’s crucial that project managers document everything to protect themselves from liability. Especially in commercial construction, where the stakes are significantly higher.


The worst part of a delay is that a legal challenge can contribute to the problem. It’s normal for legal challenges to stop the process when more money has to change hands, but the work stoppage only contributes to the problem. Construction mediation solves that problem with a meeting of two parties before a neutral third party. Each party voices concerns and airs grievances, and the mediator brainstorms a mutually beneficial solution.

Bio: Lyle Charles is an expert in commercial and residential construction, and a certified mediator and expert witness for the construction industry.