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Advice On A New Hire

 
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:29 PM   #1
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Advice On A New Hire


Posted on here a few months back looking for advice on making my first new hire. Needless to say it took me a couple of months to get around to making a decision and hiring someone.

Here's the situation: new hire is from the corporate world (never did manual or skilled labor), hired because of his (seemingly) sincere and intense passion to learn a trade as well as all around good initial vibes.

Been with me not quite two weeks. Half the time he is on time, and I mean right on time, if we start at 7:30, he is pulling in at 7:30. The other half he is 5-10 minutes late. Never packs his lunch - always goes out. Texts often on his phone when he thinks I am not looking. Does not hustle to get things, carries only one or two items, etc.

I have stressed and over-stressed the importance of being on time. Advise him to pack lunch to save money and time. Told him a few times to leave the cell phone alone.

Overall, he is mediocre. Shows a slight promise in an ability to be trained, but uncertain if he has the drive, desire or knows the time he needs to put in to do it.

Problem is I am swamped with work, really need the extra hands. Sometimes I feel like I need him more than he needs me (could this be right??). Do I let him go? Try and find a replacement, then let him go? Go extra hard on him hoping he learns his lesson and mans up or goes home?

Any advice would be appreciated.
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:37 PM   #2
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


If he is pulling in at 7:30, in my book he is late.
Work means working, not sippin your coffee, getting your tools out, finishing your phone calls, etc.

YOUR FIRED! Plenty of good help available in times like this.

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Old 07-28-2009, 06:39 PM   #3
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


State the rules - enforce the rules

The only time a cell phone should be in anyones hand, it had better be to call me, or your answering an emergency call

Can him, & search for someone else - with the way most places are a quick help wanted add will flood you with calls
Make sure you list all your expectations up front to all new hires & see what they think - they hem & haw, better to know up front
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:41 PM   #4
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Quote:
Originally Posted by CookeCarpentry View Post
Posted on here a few months back looking for advice on making my first new hire. Needless to say it took me a couple of months to get around to making a decision and hiring someone.

Here's the situation: new hire is from the corporate world (never did manual or skilled labor), hired because of his (seemingly) sincere and intense passion to learn a trade as well as all around good initial vibes.

Been with me not quite two weeks. Half the time he is on time, and I mean right on time, if we start at 7:30, he is pulling in at 7:30. The other half he is 5-10 minutes late. Never packs his lunch - always goes out. Texts often on his phone when he thinks I am not looking. Does not hustle to get things, carries only one or two items, etc.

I have stressed and over-stressed the importance of being on time. Advise him to pack lunch to save money and time. Told him a few times to leave the cell phone alone.

Overall, he is mediocre. Shows a slight promise in an ability to be trained, but uncertain if he has the drive, desire or knows the time he needs to put in to do it.

Problem is I am swamped with work, really need the extra hands. Sometimes I feel like I need him more than he needs me (could this be right??). Do I let him go? Try and find a replacement, then let him go? Go extra hard on him hoping he learns his lesson and mans up or goes home?

Any advice would be appreciated.
Well, since I'm not a dog eat dog canbal like some on this site, you may not like my answer.

The texting is just a way of life now.....all these kids do that.

As far as being later, he needs to be on time and his lunch is his business, unless he is bumming money from you for lunch.

I say, if he is on time and is willing to learn, honest, trustworthy....then the 30 or 60 minutes a day you lose in texting or walking slowly is far better than having a guy who never brings a phone and runs, but when you turn your back, he steals you blind.....

I'm happy if I can get 6 good hours out of someone in an 8 hour day, with lunch and breaks, bathroom stops.
The other thing is, what are paying the guy...? Lets be realistic guy.
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:41 PM   #5
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


I was upfront with the rules from day 1. I admit that the day to day operations (being on the jobsite everyday) prevent me from always noticing and enforcing them.
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:42 PM   #6
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


He's getting $12/hr with option of medical after 90 days.
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:43 PM   #7
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Quote:
Originally Posted by CookeCarpentry View Post

Any advice would be appreciated.
If you start at 7:30 and he pulls in at 7:30 HE'S LATE! Make him start at 8:00
If he shows up at 7:35 tell him to sit in his car till 8:30 He just lost an hours wages.
If he's messing with his phone when he should be working... GO SIT IN THE CAR FOR 1 HR
As long as he's back on time from lunch...Cool but if he's late make it a Loooong lunch. Sit in the car!

I know a lot of you guys hate CraigsList but Go on craigslist and get you someone who WANTS to work. Either in the JOBS section or look in the houshold services for a HANDYMAN... I'm just a CL handyman because I can't find guys like you who NEED a good worker with skills.

Last edited by MZ-HANDYMAN; 07-28-2009 at 06:52 PM.
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:12 PM   #8
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Just because you are considering it at such an early stage tells me there is only one question. Not if you are going to fire him, but when? Get it over with before it cost you.
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:26 PM   #9
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Fire him! I would have sent him packing the first week. If he had any experience or motivation I might say try and get him to tow the line, but it appears he does not so why bother.

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Old 07-28-2009, 07:36 PM   #10
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


If you're a small company, there's no reason why you can't have a team full of superstars. It just takes sorting through the rabble to find them.

I'd replace him. Sooner than later.

If you want to light a fire...send him home the next time he shows up late. Give him a "decision day" to think about if he really wants to work for you.

In the end though, he's shown you his true colors. He doesn't fit the program and the longer you wait...it's just that much longer before you find your next superstar. As was said, it's a buyers market for employers right now...especially if you offer steady work and benefits.

Don't waste time wringing your hands over why a promising young man won't take hold of such a good opportunity. I've put up with more than my share of so-so guys over the years to know that things aren't going to get any better with him. It is what it is.

There's a superstar out there that will make your life soooo much easier... Now go find him. (or her )

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Last edited by ChrWright; 07-28-2009 at 07:47 PM.
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:43 PM   #11
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


As for Craigslist...

Two of my carpenters came direct from CL posts and they are absolute termites. They work hard, are dependable, and my clients love them. (and both are over the age of 30 if that tells you anything .)
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:55 PM   #12
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Quote:
Originally Posted by CookeCarpentry View Post
Posted on here a few months back looking for advice on making my first new hire. Needless to say it took me a couple of months to get around to making a decision and hiring someone.

Here's the situation: new hire is from the corporate world (never did manual or skilled labor), hired because of his (seemingly) sincere and intense passion to learn a trade as well as all around good initial vibes.

Been with me not quite two weeks. Half the time he is on time, and I mean right on time, if we start at 7:30, he is pulling in at 7:30. The other half he is 5-10 minutes late. Never packs his lunch - always goes out. Texts often on his phone when he thinks I am not looking. Does not hustle to get things, carries only one or two items, etc.

I have stressed and over-stressed the importance of being on time. Advise him to pack lunch to save money and time. Told him a few times to leave the cell phone alone.

Overall, he is mediocre. Shows a slight promise in an ability to be trained, but uncertain if he has the drive, desire or knows the time he needs to put in to do it.

Problem is I am swamped with work, really need the extra hands. Sometimes I feel like I need him more than he needs me (could this be right??). Do I let him go? Try and find a replacement, then let him go? Go extra hard on him hoping he learns his lesson and mans up or goes home?

Any advice would be appreciated.
oh boy. You are a masocist aren't you?

Listen, a corporate kid's only way he is going to get it is if he gets stuck on a deserted island and has to learn to fend for himself. Gets totally broke down and built back up.

I absolutely refuse to hire guys who haven't been in the trades. There is no substitute for somebody that has been abused, made fun of been hazed and treated like a bag of dirt by a construction crew and they have slowly grown and gained skill. Those guys know what construction is about and how it works.

Those corporate boys are ridiculous. They have no clue what real work and never likely will.

You're nuts to waste your time with this kid. Get rid of him and find somebody with trade experience. There is no substitute.

When I hire somebody I put in big letters must have XX amount of construction crew experience - if you were a house flipper, that doesn't count, if you helped out your uncle billy that doesn't count, if you fixed up your own houses you lived in, that doesn't count!

You'd be amazed how pissed some of them get trying to justify how experienced they are, but you put them toe to toe with a guy who has construction crew experience and it's like Mike Tyson getting into a ring with Tiny Tim.

Your corporate boy will never measure up. He's from the land of mommys and daddys taking care of him, from the land of the X-box, not construction.
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Old 07-28-2009, 08:01 PM   #13
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Mark, after being in the 'swamped' boat for a while, I sucked it up and accepted mediocre workers BUT tried to run the show as often as possible. Production without me versus with me was night and day difference-so I would often spend the first 4-5hrs w/ the slow crew and then jump to the next job where a more skilled worker was taking care of business.

My recommendation would be to clamp down on what's important regarding rules and use him for what he is, your paycheck. Profit's not going to be as good, but you'll bide time whilie you activley search for another laborer. I say don't let the first guy go until the second guy pans out. I hired a guy who lasted for 3 days before he confessed he couldn't hang with the physical work (older guy). For $12 an hr in the surrounding Philly area, you're getting a laborer.

best of luck!
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Old 07-28-2009, 08:06 PM   #14
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Finley View Post
I absolutely refuse to hire guys who haven't been in the trades.
I hired a college kid for the summer as a laborer-I know his family so there are ties there. No experience with construction or remodeling, but he'll do all right in life. After teaching him what to do, he keeps up on it and moves on to the next thing. I turned around one day wondering where he was, he took the initiative to cut the rebar for the upcoming next step without the experienced guys telling him to. Point being, either a guy wants to or he doesn't want to, work that is.

In my experience, the go getters, hustlers, guys looking for a better way, those are the ones using you because one day they'll start their own crew/business
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Old 07-28-2009, 08:12 PM   #15
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


He's a goner...bye-bye...c'ya...adios...whatever suits you. I can't even imagine pulling that crap...and right after you've started a new job on top of it....
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Old 07-28-2009, 08:28 PM   #16
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Quote:
Originally Posted by MZ-HANDYMAN View Post
If you start at 7:30 and he pulls in at 7:30 HE'S LATE! Make him start at 8:00
If he shows up at 7:35 tell him to sit in his car till 8:30 He just lost an hours wages.
If he's messing with his phone when he should be working... GO SIT IN THE CAR FOR 1 HR
As long as he's back on time from lunch...Cool but if he's late make it a Loooong lunch. Sit in the car!

I know a lot of you guys hate CraigsList but Go on craigslist and get you someone who WANTS to work. Either in the JOBS section or look in the houshold services for a HANDYMAN... I'm just a CL handyman because I can't find guys like you who NEED a good worker with skills.
Yeah and most of those Craigslist guy's are not too concerned with working for someone that has workers comp...


Till they fall off a ladder.
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Old 07-28-2009, 10:24 PM   #17
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


I tell every one the rules the first day .
I will watch them for one week .
On Day 6 I start enforcing the rules .
Talking on the phone , smoking , drinking coffee, pissen me off . Gets them the rest of the day off .
show up late ! (Go home)
I pay on Monday so most guys show up . If they aren't there they don't get payed until the following week . If you don't like it ( Quit ) .
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Old 07-28-2009, 10:37 PM   #18
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Quote:
Originally Posted by wellbuilthome View Post
I pay on Monday so most guys show up . If they aren't there they don't get payed until the following week

Is that even legal ???
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Old 07-29-2009, 12:42 AM   #19
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


i had a kid trying to text his girl friend while we were both moving a 30' pic around the househe didnt last the day
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Old 07-29-2009, 04:45 AM   #20
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Re: Advice On A New Hire


Quote:
Originally Posted by Celtic View Post
Is that even legal ???
There are a certain number of days before someone has to legally be paid for their work. If he is within those days, probably is. Not sure if the laws are the same there, though.

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