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Losing My Patience, Never My Passion

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Joe Marconi

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Losing My Patience, Never My Passion

 

As a shop owner, that began his career as a mechanic 36 years ago, the effort of building a business has taken its toll in many ways. While I have not lost my passion for what I do, I have lost my patience with many of the things I see around me. I have built a business from a small 2-man operation to a 2-facility company with close to 20 employees. It’s often said that you need great people around you in order to achieve success. But the truth is without leadership, vision, passion and a whole lot of determination, nothing will ever get accomplished. It also takes risk, with countless sleepless nights. All of which must come from the founder or owner of the business.

 

Here’s my frustration. I hold myself accountable each and every day. If I screw up, I admit it and work twice as hard to rectify the issue. Why don’t others in the company hold themselves accountable? Not for me, for themselves. Take for example, a technician misdiagnoses a problem and costs the company money in lost time, wrong parts installed and an upset customer. Now, mistake happen, we are all human. That’s not my issue. My issue is the lack of remorse, the lack of concern, the lack of sense of urgency to make things right.

 

I see too many times after a mistake has happen, that nothing changes in the attitude from the tech that made the error. He does not work any extra to make up for the loss. He does not come in early to try to make amends. And when I try to bring it up, I’m the bad guy and the tech gets upset at me! Upset at me? I have to suck it up and keep it inside me? And, Heaven forbid if I even suggest that the tech come back from lunch a few minutes early or maybe forgo his “natural birth right” of spending time on the tool truck.

 

In their defense, my techs work very hard. They endure the cold, the rain, the sweltering heat of the summer and the daily bodily punishment of being a mechanic. I guess, what I want is just a little of the passion I have. That show of concern and the paying attention to all the details of the business. Also, I would love to see people have the same energy level as I have. I have more than 20 years on some of my employees and there are days that they can’t keep up with me!

 

I guess, maybe it’s a lot to ask. My techs are great people. The morale is great and we are profitable. Some people tell me that it’s impossible for an employee to care like the owner cares. I don’t agree. Before I went into business, I took my work personal. When I worked for someone, I worked like it was my own business. But, that was me and to be honest I didn’t stay in the workforce long, starting my own business at the age of twenty five.

 

Maybe I have been doing this too long, maybe I need to ignore some things. Maybe I just need a break. But, I am who I am and I can’t see myself changing. My passion will continue to be the force that drives me into the future. I will continue to work hard to bring out the best in me and in my employees. I am dedicated to my family, my business and to my employees. I will not push my ways on anyone. People need to show respect for themselves first. Only then can they truly grow with others.

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Joe, from your story you answered your own problem. You, at 25 made the decision to do better. That is the difference in you and a employee. I see this all the time, and from being in a association for the past 15 years of business owners in my area I hear the same thing from each and everyone of them. Every Tuesday we meet for lunch and it's amazing how the same thing happens in every business.

 

I've never had an employee that put as much effort in it as I do, mainly the employee looks at me as the guy with all the money. HA, what money.... Most of them only see their paycheck at the end of the week and have no CARE to figure out where each and every dollar goes when a job is completed. It's as if they think the whole thing goes into the owners pocket. But, if things start getting tight, and slow at the shop, they're the first to run down the street looking for work.

 

To have as many employees as you do and keeping it all together is an art. You've accomplished more than you think Joe... there's no shame in your game... You've done well.... step back from it a second, and look at the whole picture... you'll have pride in what you've done. Believe me, it's worth the look.

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Joe, from your story you answered your own problem. You, at 25 made the decision to do better. That is the difference in you and a employee. I see this all the time, and from being in a association for the past 15 years of business owners in my area I hear the same thing from each and everyone of them. Every Tuesday we meet for lunch and it's amazing how the same thing happens in every business.I've never had an employee that put as much effort in it as I do, mainly the employee looks at me as the guy with all the money. HA, what money.... Most of them only see their paycheck at the end of the week and have no CARE to figure out where each and every dollar goes when a job is completed. It's as if they think the whole thing goes into the owners pocket. But, if things start getting tight, and slow at the shop, they're the first to run down the street looking for work. To have as many employees as you do and keeping it all together is an art. You've accomplished more than you think Joe... there's no shame in your game... You've done well.... step back from it a second, and look at the whole picture... you'll have pride in what you've done. Believe me, it's worth the look.

 

 

Thanks Gonzo, I just needed to vent a little. I guess what makes people like us go into business is our passion and to make a difference. You are right about the money, too. Employees (and customers) don't know how the money gets distributed.

 

Thanks for the pep talk. I needed it...

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I ask myself that same question every single day. I always worked as if I owned the business and I think that is what made me who I am.

 

But I have to tell you after an episode I had the other day, I have a new attitude. You WILL be held accountable for you actions. Employee showed up late after being specifically told he better not. It was explained to him why. He showed up 45 minutes late anyway. I cancelled his training and told him when I get 6 months of "Good Behavior" I will send him.

 

Not backing down anymore. We are not the bad guys we give them jobs and benefits and other perks and they think we are the bad guys?

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