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Work Ethic

 
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Old 06-02-2015, 04:18 PM   #41
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Re: Work Ethic


Anyone who refuses to dig a hole is either very good at what they do or they aren't good at doing anything.

I had that same conversation with my 20 year old employee who didn't want to climb through attics and crawl spaces to pull wire. He said that he thinks he might be better at hooking up the wires in the control panel and programming the system. When I explained to him that the position has already been filled AND every single person on the crew has been through the crawl space before, he had the nerve to ask if I would make one of the other guys pull the wire since they had no problem doing it.

So after playing out the next scenario in my mind of me beating the guy down, putting him in the hospital, getting arrested, going to jail, meeting Big Tiny, getting passed around to each one of Big Tiny's friends, and having traumatic flashbacks for the rest of my life, I politely dismissed him for the day.

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Old 06-02-2015, 04:23 PM   #42
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Re: Work Ethic


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Originally Posted by tedanderson View Post
Anyone who refuses to dig a hole is either very good at what they do or they aren't good at doing anything.

I had that same conversation with my 20 year old employee who didn't want to climb through attics and crawl spaces to pull wire. He said that he thinks he might be better at hooking up the wires in the control panel and programming the system. When I explained to him that the position has already been filled AND every single person on the crew has been through the crawl space before, he had the nerve to ask if I would make one of the other guys pull the wire since they had no problem doing it.

So after playing out the next scenario in my mind of me beating the guy down, putting him in the hospital, getting arrested, going to jail, meeting Big Tiny, getting passed around to each one of Big Tiny's friends, and having traumatic flashbacks for the rest of my life, I politely dismissed him for the day.


I would nick name him Bubble Boy! But that's just me!
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Old 06-02-2015, 06:21 PM   #43
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Re: Work Ethic


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Originally Posted by tedanderson View Post
Anyone who refuses to dig a hole is either very good at what they do or they aren't good at doing anything.

I had that same conversation with my 20 year old employee who didn't want to climb through attics and crawl spaces to pull wire. He said that he thinks he might be better at hooking up the wires in the control panel and programming the system. When I explained to him that the position has already been filled AND every single person on the crew has been through the crawl space before, he had the nerve to ask if I would make one of the other guys pull the wire since they had no problem doing it.

So after playing out the next scenario in my mind of me beating the guy down, putting him in the hospital, getting arrested, going to jail, meeting Big Tiny, getting passed around to each one of Big Tiny's friends, and having traumatic flashbacks for the rest of my life, I politely dismissed him for the day.


Where I used to work, I eventually became the guy that does the hiring. My first hire was sight unseen, and behaved exactly like your guy. His first task was to move 300 studs from the lumber pile to the inside of the house. He had the gall to ask me, "Why don't we all carry these, and it will go much faster?. The only thing that went faster was his termination that same day.
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Old 06-02-2015, 07:00 PM   #44
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Re: Work Ethic


I set up 4 flights of scaffolding today, took it down, set it up again, took it back down and then humped it back up the hill to my trailer

I decided to quit early after that.
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Old 06-02-2015, 07:10 PM   #45
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Re: Work Ethic


We made nicknames for the labourers.

Buttercup, Gucci, Nancy.

If you got a nickname, you knew you were on the way out.
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Old 06-02-2015, 07:19 PM   #46
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Re: Work Ethic


My earlier post was ragging on 20 somethings that feel entitled, special and hoping for more hand outs from mom, dad, business, society, the government and so forth.

But just yesterday we started on a project. The other guy helping owns a firm in the sunny, seaside, city of Santa Cruz, CA. Home of University of California Santa Cruz....who just happen to turn out more highly educated dolts than any other campus (Berkeley might be a close second). But the university is not my story.

So my pal hires a 50 something guy, part time to start, to help out on jobs. This guy has something close to 20 years experience with another firm, but is out on his own, while he wife has a "real" job and basically is the bread winner of the family.

So this guy fits the mold of the hippy dippy alarm guy. Basically his experience is just doing pre-wires for housing developments. Well, out here, the large housing development has gone away, and, this guy no longer works for the firm that had him. Although the owner of the firm says this guy was great and had a lot of knowledge.

Well Mr. Great and Knowledgeable showed up for the job interview with dreadlocks (he's a white guy, 50+ years old), surfer dude T-shirt and sandals. He mentioned toward the end of the interview that he doesn't do "good" first interviews. What??? This is your first interview !! and you know you don't do so well, so you show up like this !!!

Well, my pal hired him anyway just to try him out. Guess what ? The dude doesn't like wearing company shirts....doesn't like working 5 days a week.....doesn't like getting up early to go to work.....doesn't like going out of town for work.....doesn't like rules and regulations that "hinder" his life style and self expression.............BTW....him and his wife tried going into the organic bagel business (like every other person in laid back Santa Cruz) and it flopped....like a dead bagel.

My only connection with this is that my pal and his hippy dippy worker dude were both supposed to show up at 7am Monday for a project of mine. My pal shows up alone and not in a good mood. He said that the "dude" called him up Sunday night and said he couldn't make it to work because he hurt his back staining his deck.....and he had to take a couple of days off to go see his holistic new age chiropractor to get his back fixed, his aura readjusted and his chakra straightened out.

Nonetheless, I am using the old "I told you so" on my pal right now. As it was, the project went fine with just two of us.
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:13 PM   #47
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Re: Work Ethic


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Originally Posted by pinwheel View Post
Me too, but I couldn't avoid it this weekend. Had to help my neighbor build fence around the ground he sold me for my shop.

That worst part, I'm ashamed to say, I let a 75 year old man outwork me.
He's probably sitting at the coffee shop talking about the damn kid that can't keep up with him.
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:25 PM   #48
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Re: Work Ethic


Many years ago, i think i was about 17,I was hired as a labourer.
We were building a fairground.
I was tasked with covering a culvert with gravel.
I wanted to show the supervisor that I could work hard.
Shovelling gravel like a madman, impressed with myself.
The super says, you remind me of a dog taking a [email protected]
Expending a lot of energy, and getting [email protected] all accomplished.
He then taught me how to shovel properly.
I've never forgotten that lesson. Still makes me laugh
He was later my instructor at a heavy equipment college.
Took me aside and said, it's just as easy to be ten minutes early as it is to be ten minutes late.
Another good lesson.
What can I say, I was a slow learner. Haha
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:29 PM   #49
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Re: Work Ethic


Here's the problem : For about 50 years, we ve told our brightest young people to go to college and make something of themselves . At the same time , we abandoned the concept of directing , developing and insuring future tradespeople .

Teachers told challenged students they would "dig ditches". ( heavy equipment operators do quite well....)

We developed a negative view toward blue collar work as a culture .

As Mike Rowe said, " We have been so busy filling the corner office, we forgot to train someone to build it." Well said.

Now we are left with a bunch of dopeheads to build our houses .

The upside is , if you are clean, sober and dependable , have good trade skill and can manage money , and ..I repeat... and aren't afraid to work, you will do well out here. Also, you won't have as much competition. ....these guys aren't going to take your work away. You can't even give it to them.

These guys aren't burned out....they aren't even lit !!!

Every website, nationwide, every contractor is so fed up trying to develop a team to serve his clients . the shortage of technical knowledge is critical ...we have guys that know nothing and don't want to know anything . They want a check, no stress and an easy day.

My advice: Don't let them bring you down. Say no.. Reward the good ones , sell and schedule smart and make it happen .
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:47 PM   #50
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Re: Work Ethic


....
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Last edited by blacktop; 06-02-2015 at 08:49 PM.
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Old 06-02-2015, 09:54 PM   #51
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Re: Work Ethic


I ll add this ....I hate it for all of us. I'm passionate about what we do .... I want the best for my clients, my employees and my family . I am constantly working to save my company from its own employees.... And I have some great folks ....but waste, mistakes , bad attitudes, rework ....it can kill you .

Here is one more thing ...you don't die out here usually from one big goof......YOU DIE THE DEATH OF A 1,000 CUTS. And that's slow and painful.

Stand tall, do good work, charge accordingly, be specific in your contracts and collect what is owed and when its owed. Be a person of your word, return calls, put it in writing , show class.

Be nice , but more importantly, be professional. Keep it business.

And as hard as it is , when people aren't performing , let them know . Show them , write down the days objective , then come back and check how they did. Review it. Teach them to work ahead .


Also, if you leave one crew , don't tell them where you are going or when you will be back.... Keep them on their toes ...also they ll warn crews at other jobs to get busy , you are heading that way. You don't have to be a bear , but stay on top of your work .
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Old 06-02-2015, 10:41 PM   #52
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Re: Work Ethic


Dude I've seen that picture of your trailer a dozen times by now is it your signature or something?
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Old 06-02-2015, 11:49 PM   #53
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Re: Work Ethic


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I am not missing any point.

Shoveling dirt is not adversity.

Amazing that you have already determined that he won't be able to support his possible sick future wife because he sucked at shoveling some dirt.
You do seem to be missing the point because it has nothing to do with shovelling.

To you, me, and I'm sure everyone else on here, shovelling dirt is not adversity. It's a menial task that we tend to avoid if possible. But if either of us were put into a situation where for some reason we had to shovel, or do some other menial task, it would get done. Not doing so just means you're incredibly weak-minded. And for someone who's weak-minded, shovelling becomes adversity.

I stand 100% by my sick wife conclusion. This guy shows up eager to work and needing the money. The first "challenge" he came across was a pile of dirt. In his mind, the challenge was too much for him and he was incapable of completing such a daunting task. If you've ever competed in a sport like wrestling, you know what it means to see someone "break." Yesterday, I saw this guy break on the end of a shovel.

Life's challenges are a hell of a lot harder than moving dirt. If that's enough to break him, I don't see how he could function in the face of real adversity.
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Old 06-02-2015, 11:58 PM   #54
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Re: Work Ethic


For everyone saying I should've gave him a time frame, lead by example, etc, believe me I tried.

First thing I tried was to show him what it looks like to do it right. He said he couldn't go that fast. I said I wanted the pile gone in an hour. He came no where close.

I even went over and asked him if he wanted to quit. He begged me to let him keep working. I told him I needed him to work faster. He kept saying "I'm sorry." and "I'm really going as fast as I can."

In truth, I don't think he was lying. Like I said, he's a good person. I genuinely believe he thinks that's as fast as he can work because he doesn't have the mental strength to push himself any harder.

I do believe that social trends and technology have enabled many of my peers to grow up living a life where they never once had to push themselves. This separates my generation from previous ones. For these reasons, I stand by my original conclusions.
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:03 AM   #55
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Re: Work Ethic


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You do seem to be missing the point because it has nothing to do with shovelling.

To you, me, and I'm sure everyone else on here, shovelling dirt is not adversity. It's a menial task that we tend to avoid if possible. But if either of us were put into a situation where for some reason we had to shovel, or do some other menial task, it would get done. Not doing so just means you're incredibly weak-minded. And for someone who's weak-minded, shovelling becomes adversity.

I stand 100% by my sick wife conclusion. This guy shows up eager to work and needing the money. The first "challenge" he came across was a pile of dirt. In his mind, the challenge was too much for him and he was incapable of completing such a daunting task. If you've ever competed in a sport like wrestling, you know what it means to see someone "break." Yesterday, I saw this guy break on the end of a shovel.

Life's challenges are a hell of a lot harder than moving dirt. If that's enough to break him, I don't see how he could function in the face of real adversity.
I look at that pile of dirt as a solution to my challenges and not THE challenge. That challenge is paying my rent and eating.
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:07 AM   #56
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Re: Work Ethic


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I look at that pile of dirt as a solution to my challenges and not THE challenge. That challenge is paying my rent and eating.
Agreed. Either way you look at it, no grown man should be mentally broken at the prospect of shovelling dirt.

The damn pile wasn't even that big...
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:15 AM   #57
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Re: Work Ethic


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I had a labourer, same age as me, that complained that about shoveling and said that he came here to learn carpentry not dig holes. I said everyone starts out digging holes. Then he says I want to do important things, this is BS! I said how can I expect you to handle the big things if you can't handle the small ones. I'm here right now, digging the same holes and I'm a carpenter. If we needed the help the boss would jump in here with us and help. You need to earn your keep and if you show you can handle the menial tasks then we will consider you for training. He still didn't get it.

He didn't last long. Thought he should start at the top with no marketable skills.
I think I might have hired that same guy... for 14 1/2 hrs
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:27 AM   #58
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Re: Work Ethic


I've noticed the young bucks that regularly visit this site are the kids we all would like to have work for us. Everytime I start thinking we are all doomed and I read Posts from youngin', extremmtnbiker, etc, it gives me hope. It's a daunting thought to think this generation will be taking care of me when I'm old and senile.
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:55 AM   #59
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Re: Work Ethic


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Some people are not cut out for manual labor, big deal.
I know when I was younger I didn't want to do manual labor. Especially for someone else.
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You ask for your money frequently, and you collect it quickly, else you stop working immediately.
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Old 06-03-2015, 04:37 AM   #60
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Re: Work Ethic


hockeydman,
you are too young and close to the situation to have correct perspective on it......

I will be 53 this summer---so I have watched ---- for over 30 years each new batch of 21 year olds come and go.......

nothing has really changed--- it is the same now as it was then.......

some people are mature at age 15
some at 20
some at 25

some never grow up--- I have a sister who is nearly 60---who never left home. she graduated college---and instead of taking a professional job which was easily available to her at her employer at that time----she took a low level clerical job instead---worked 25 years and retired.
never left home, never started her own life, never married, never raised a family, never bought a house--- never progressed beyond where she was at 16 ( though she has managed to go bankrupt TWICE)

I could go on and on---but basically 21 year olds today are not much different than we were 30 plus years ago.--- they have grown up with a few more toys and gadgets than we did---and they have a few less opportunities than we did--- but they are basically the same.

also--- one of my sons got married last october. at the wedding reception one of his buddies got pretty drunk and came up to me and said " I want to thank you for everything you taught me.--- remember when I worked for you a couplle months about 6 years ago??????? I know I wasn't a very good worker back then--- but you taught me so much........" and then for about 10 minutes he went on to repeat all these things he claimed I told him---things I said, lessons imparted------ ."
Of course I didn't remember doing anyof it--- but apparently working for me,briefly was a formative moment in his life ( he was 18-19 at the time)

so, just do your best ,set an example, teach when you can and keep moving forward.
it will all work out.
stephen

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