30 Year Employees Don’t Exist Anymore

Posted by David Chism | Tue, Aug 19, 2014

 30 Year Employees Don’t Exist Anymore

Always Be Recruiting

The num­ber one prob­lem I have been hear­ing about from clients this year is not a lack of leads. No, leads have been strong across the U.S. The prob­lem has been a lack of good peo­ple. I have actu­al­ly been asked if I can pro­vide recruit­ing ser­vices, not mar­ket­ing! If you do need help find­ing good help, I would rec­om­mend con­tact­ing my friends at Sum­mit Ser­vices. They pro­vide head­hunt­ing ser­vices for esti­ma­tors, office staff and, I believe, help with hir­ing field employ­ees too.

This brief post is a refresh­er to some of you and maybe some­thing new for oth­ers. It is quite sim­ple: Always Be Recruit­ing. You’ve seen this con­cept before on vehi­cles, web­sites and store­fronts: We’re Hir­ing!” or We are always look­ing for tal­ent­ed peo­ple to join our team!” Some of these post­ings stay up year round for busi­ness­es. It should real­ly be no dif­fer­ent for the home improve­ment industry.

Find­ing and keep­ing good employ­ees in the trades today is hard­er than ever, espe­cial­ly for the paint­ing indus­try. I’m not sure why that is, although I have my opin­ion. I per­son­al­ly think a grow­ing num­ber of painters, car­pen­ters, framers and so on do not take pride in their work today. They look at their job as ordi­nary and non-extra­or­di­nary with every­thing else the world appears to offer them. Per­haps there are also a few more of these trades­men who just were not raised with good work ethics. What­ev­er the rea­son, it appears there is no real end to this prob­lem of find­ing and keep­ing good people.

A Long Term Employee?

The days of a long term employ­ee are over. I’ve read a num­ber of sta­tis­ti­cal reports over the last decade that say if an employ­ee stays with you for 5 years, that is con­sid­ered a long term and loy­al employ­ee. If this is the norm, then we should all stop think­ing about how to find a 30 year employ­ee and just know that the employ­ment expectan­cy is 3 – 5 years for a decent employ­ee. If some­one gets past the 5 year mark today, con­sid­er rolling out the red car­pet for him/​her! Just don’t be too shocked if he gives his notice at year 6 to look for green­er pas­tures” else­where! Remem­ber, you are always recruit­ing. He can be replaced; even though it can and nor­mal­ly is painful. 

My dad is good at find­ing and keep­ing good peo­ple. He is always on the look­out for peo­ple that will be a good fit for his com­pa­ny. I remem­ber one time at a restau­rant, my dad hand­ed one of the servers his busi­ness card and gave a quick sales pitch about his com­pa­ny. He also recent­ly hired a new employ­ee with no paint­ing expe­ri­ence who he met at my broth­er’s new brew­ery (side note: my dad does­n’t even drink! but he does prospect!). The new painter is work­ing out well and his staff real­ly likes him. A keeper!

Don’t Let Employ­ees Dis­cour­age You

There will always be a turnover of employ­ees. There is not much you can do about this as I’ve men­tioned above. There are, how­ev­er, plen­ty of things you can do to help keep employ­ees hap­py and pro­long their employ­ment. Anoth­er tip I’ll share from work­ing with my dad: spend time get­ting to know your peo­ple. My dad cares about his peo­ple. He runs a small paint­ing com­pa­ny in San Diego with a very low turnover rate. Though he is small, he is prof­itable and nation­al­ly rec­og­nized by paint com­pa­nies of all sizes. I think it is because of how he runs his busi­ness and treats his employ­ees. He keeps tabs on how his staff is doing. He pays them above aver­age wages. He also has tak­en many of them out for break­fast just to talk.

I hope this post will just inspire you to press on as a busi­ness own­er. Hir­ing, recruit­ing and keep­ing employ­ees is just a part of what it takes to cre­ate and run a fan­tas­tic com­pa­ny. It real­ly should be treat­ed as being just as impor­tant as sales and marketing.

About David Chism

David Chism started his business out of a passion for helping small contracting businesses grow, be more profitable and become better known to their target clients. One lifelong hobby of David is using techie gadgets. So this blog is a place where he writes about technology, marketing ideas, just for fun (humor), personal thoughts on small business and more.


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