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Default Wow those drinks go so fast!

I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?
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wrote:

I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


Welcome to the wonderful world of general contracting. If you
supply the materials, what incentive do they have to conserve
anything? Now a really good human being and electrician may do
it because it is the right thing to do, but those guys are not
around much anymore, so you have to deal with what you get.

Here is how I do it: I supply drinks, but I get a 10 gal. cooler
and fill it with water and the gatorade mix of their choice. I
give them enough of those packets to last however long they are
going to be working, or a weeks supply, whichever is less.

Materials; I give them the materials and I tell them that this
is enough to complete the job (plus some) and I tell them that if
they run out, they need to show me where all of them went. I
make sure that they understand that there will be no more coming
unless they can demonstrate that they used more than I estimated.
Sometimes they do and I don't give them a hard time, but I do
check to make sure that they haven't walked off the job.

Ask them to be a bit more organized because it is a money and
safety issue.

--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
Georgetown, TX
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Robert Allison wrote:
wrote:

I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

....
Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. ...
Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, ... and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, ...


Welcome to the wonderful world of general contracting. If you supply
the materials, what incentive do they have to conserve anything? Now a
really good human being and electrician may do it because it is the
right thing to do, but those guys are not around much anymore, so you
have to deal with what you get.

Here is how I do it: I supply drinks, but I get a 10 gal. cooler and
fill it with water and the gatorade mix of their choice. I give them
enough of those packets to last however long they are going to be
working, or a weeks supply, whichever is less.

Materials; I give them the materials and I tell them that this is
enough to complete the job (plus some) and I tell them that if they run
out, they need to show me where all of them went. I make sure that they
understand that there will be no more coming unless they can demonstrate
that they used more than I estimated. Sometimes they do and I don't
give them a hard time, but I do check to make sure that they haven't
walked off the job.

Ask them to be a bit more organized because it is a money and safety issue.


If you can talk to them you're ahead...

I concur it now is the only way to deal w/ them--otherwise one has to be
there babysitting 100% of the time which isn't possible/practical.

--


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On Apr 7, 2:16*pm, wrote:
I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. * They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. *So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. *They
drink a lot? *Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. *So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. *I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. *I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. *Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


I have hired a team of electrician

In my case...

I have a league of teen-age softball players
I have a bunch of Soap Box Derby racers
I have 4 kids of my own
My kids have friends that come over a lot

Problem, at the end of (any given event) I go around and between the
(group) of them it is not unusual that I find (XX) or more drink
bottles. They drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full.

Sound familiar?

Maybe all these kids are going to grow up and become electricians...
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wrote in message
...
I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


What ticks me off is that one can provide trash cans, and they end up empty
at the end of every day. Know whut uh mean, Vern?

Steve




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"Robert Allison" wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
wrote:

I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


Welcome to the wonderful world of general contracting. If you supply the
materials, what incentive do they have to conserve anything? Now a really
good human being and electrician may do it because it is the right thing
to do, but those guys are not around much anymore, so you have to deal
with what you get.

Here is how I do it: I supply drinks, but I get a 10 gal. cooler and fill
it with water and the gatorade mix of their choice. I give them enough of
those packets to last however long they are going to be working, or a
weeks supply, whichever is less.

Materials; I give them the materials and I tell them that this is enough
to complete the job (plus some) and I tell them that if they run out, they
need to show me where all of them went. I make sure that they understand
that there will be no more coming unless they can demonstrate that they
used more than I estimated. Sometimes they do and I don't give them a hard
time, but I do check to make sure that they haven't walked off the job.

Ask them to be a bit more organized because it is a money and safety
issue.

--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
Georgetown, TX


But they are professionals! Don't they want to be treated as one?

I don't get it.


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On Apr 7, 2:16 pm, wrote:
I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


Surfeit does not make people happy. It makes them wasteful. Bob
Allison has it right with the big jug of Gatorade. Give them three
plastic cups and use a Sharpie marker to put their initials on each
cup. It's a little late in the game to switch, and you might be
shooting yourself in the foot by doing so, so maybe you should just
stock that fridge with three or four bottles per man.

Electricians should be able to estimate their material needs to within
10%. You should have done a takeoff before starting the job and had
the estimated amount of materials on the job with a bit over for the
unforeseen. In reality, you're probably not saving much money at all
by buying the materials. The electricians will have an account with
their local supply house and will pay no more than you pay at a big
box store, probably less, and they'll get the same or better
materials.

Those additional materials will start disappearing. Ask them for a
list of what they'll need to finish the job and then give them that
and only that. You're living at the house, right? So if they run out
they can just ask you for additional.

R
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"RicodJour" wrote in message
...
On Apr 7, 2:16 pm, wrote:
I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


Surfeit does not make people happy. It makes them wasteful. Bob
Allison has it right with the big jug of Gatorade. Give them three
plastic cups and use a Sharpie marker to put their initials on each
cup. It's a little late in the game to switch, and you might be
shooting yourself in the foot by doing so, so maybe you should just
stock that fridge with three or four bottles per man.

Electricians should be able to estimate their material needs to within
10%. You should have done a takeoff before starting the job and had
the estimated amount of materials on the job with a bit over for the
unforeseen. In reality, you're probably not saving much money at all
by buying the materials. The electricians will have an account with
their local supply house and will pay no more than you pay at a big
box store, probably less, and they'll get the same or better
materials.

Those additional materials will start disappearing. Ask them for a
list of what they'll need to finish the job and then give them that
and only that. You're living at the house, right? So if they run out
they can just ask you for additional.

R


RicodJour:

No I am not living at the house. No way will I live on a construction site
anymore!

I will move in when it's habitable.



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MiamiCuse wrote:
"Robert Allison" wrote in message
news:[email protected]...

wrote:


I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


Welcome to the wonderful world of general contracting. If you supply the
materials, what incentive do they have to conserve anything? Now a really
good human being and electrician may do it because it is the right thing
to do, but those guys are not around much anymore, so you have to deal
with what you get.

Here is how I do it: I supply drinks, but I get a 10 gal. cooler and fill
it with water and the gatorade mix of their choice. I give them enough of
those packets to last however long they are going to be working, or a
weeks supply, whichever is less.

Materials; I give them the materials and I tell them that this is enough
to complete the job (plus some) and I tell them that if they run out, they
need to show me where all of them went. I make sure that they understand
that there will be no more coming unless they can demonstrate that they
used more than I estimated. Sometimes they do and I don't give them a hard
time, but I do check to make sure that they haven't walked off the job.

Ask them to be a bit more organized because it is a money and safety
issue.

--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
Georgetown, TX



But they are professionals! Don't they want to be treated as one?

I don't get it.


Professionals today are not what professionals were when I was
younger. In the old days, missing 3 days of work over a month
would get you fired. Showing up late more than three times a
month would get you fired. Using company time to make phone
calls would get you fired. Spending too much time in the
bathroom would get you fired. Wasting materials would get you
fired. Not knowing how to do your job would get you fired.

Nowadays, if you fire someone, you had better be ready to defend
yourself in court, unless you have a document trail showing every
thing that he did to cause him to be fired and every infraction
had better be signed by the employee.

In addition, it is very hard to come by anyone to work, much less
quality workers. I no longer employ ANY workers (except for the
occasional day laborer) and do everything by subcontractors.
When I did have employees, there would not be a week that went by
that someone didn't come on the jobsite and offer them work at
another company, for more money!

So, I guess that treating them like I do, IS treating them like
the professionals of today. When you get a real professional on
the job, you will quickly be aware of it, and treat them
accordingly. It doesn't take long to recognize the difference.

--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
Georgetown, TX
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On Apr 8, 1:00 am, "MiamiCuse" wrote:
"RicodJour" wrote in message

...



On Apr 7, 2:16 pm, wrote:
I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.


Something that bothers me.


I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.


Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.


Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.


Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


Surfeit does not make people happy. It makes them wasteful. Bob
Allison has it right with the big jug of Gatorade. Give them three
plastic cups and use a Sharpie marker to put their initials on each
cup. It's a little late in the game to switch, and you might be
shooting yourself in the foot by doing so, so maybe you should just
stock that fridge with three or four bottles per man.


Electricians should be able to estimate their material needs to within
10%. You should have done a takeoff before starting the job and had
the estimated amount of materials on the job with a bit over for the
unforeseen. In reality, you're probably not saving much money at all
by buying the materials. The electricians will have an account with
their local supply house and will pay no more than you pay at a big
box store, probably less, and they'll get the same or better
materials.


Those additional materials will start disappearing. Ask them for a
list of what they'll need to finish the job and then give them that
and only that. You're living at the house, right? So if they run out
they can just ask you for additional.


No I am not living at the house. No way will I live on a construction site
anymore!

I will move in when it's habitable.


Didn't know you'd moved out - when did that happen? The rest of the
advice still goes, and additional emphasis on the extra material
walking.

R


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In article [email protected],
Robert Allison wrote:

MiamiCuse wrote:
"Robert Allison" wrote in message
news:[email protected]...

wrote:


I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.

Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.

Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.

Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?

Welcome to the wonderful world of general contracting. If you supply the
materials, what incentive do they have to conserve anything? Now a really
good human being and electrician may do it because it is the right thing
to do, but those guys are not around much anymore, so you have to deal
with what you get.

Here is how I do it: I supply drinks, but I get a 10 gal. cooler and fill
it with water and the gatorade mix of their choice. I give them enough of
those packets to last however long they are going to be working, or a
weeks supply, whichever is less.

Materials; I give them the materials and I tell them that this is enough
to complete the job (plus some) and I tell them that if they run out, they
need to show me where all of them went. I make sure that they understand
that there will be no more coming unless they can demonstrate that they
used more than I estimated. Sometimes they do and I don't give them a hard
time, but I do check to make sure that they haven't walked off the job.

Ask them to be a bit more organized because it is a money and safety
issue.

--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
Georgetown, TX



But they are professionals! Don't they want to be treated as one?

I don't get it.


Professionals today are not what professionals were when I was
younger. In the old days, missing 3 days of work over a month
would get you fired. Showing up late more than three times a
month would get you fired. Using company time to make phone
calls would get you fired. Spending too much time in the
bathroom would get you fired. Wasting materials would get you
fired. Not knowing how to do your job would get you fired.

Nowadays, if you fire someone, you had better be ready to defend
yourself in court, unless you have a document trail showing every
thing that he did to cause him to be fired and every infraction
had better be signed by the employee.


Not only that, but if you count the number of personal phone calls he
makes, you had better count the number of phone calls every other
employee makes, too. Otherwise your ass is in a sling for singling him
out.


In addition, it is very hard to come by anyone to work, much less
quality workers. I no longer employ ANY workers (except for the
occasional day laborer) and do everything by subcontractors.
When I did have employees, there would not be a week that went by
that someone didn't come on the jobsite and offer them work at
another company, for more money!


The trades are suffering, because kids don't perceive any glamor and
prestige in them. And then by the time an apprentice becomes a useful
journeyman, he sets up shop for himself. My mechanic, plumber, and
electrician are all guys that work by themselves. They've all tried the
employee route, but it takes at least six guys to make that business
model viable, and it's a PITA in many ways.

I don't know if this is still the case, but when I spent a month in
Germany as a high school exchange student in the early 70's, high school
was for the academically gifted students who almost always went on to
college and a "professional" career. The other kids were sent to trade
schools after junior high, so that by the time they were 18 they had a
reasonable level of skill as a tradesman of one sort or another. Makes
more sense to me than what we do here in the U.S.


So, I guess that treating them like I do, IS treating them like
the professionals of today. When you get a real professional on
the job, you will quickly be aware of it, and treat them
accordingly. It doesn't take long to recognize the difference.

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Default Wow those drinks go so fast!

On Apr 8, 12:06*pm, Smitty Two wrote:
In article [email protected],
*Robert Allison wrote:





MiamiCuse wrote:
"Robert Allison" wrote in message
news:[email protected]...


wrote:


I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. * They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.


Something that bothers me.


I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. *So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.


Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. *They
drink a lot? *Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. *So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.


Same thing with materials. *I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. *I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. *Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.


Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


Welcome to the wonderful world of general contracting. *If you supply the
materials, what incentive do they have to conserve anything? *Now a really
good human being and electrician may do it because it is the right thing
to do, but those guys are not around much anymore, so you have to deal
with what you get.


Here is how I do it: *I supply drinks, but I get a 10 gal. cooler and fill
it with water and the gatorade mix of their choice. *I give them enough of
those packets to last however long they are going to be working, or a
weeks supply, whichever is less.


Materials; *I give them the materials and I tell them that this is enough
to complete the job (plus some) and I tell them that if they run out, they
need to show me where all of them went. *I make sure that they understand
that there will be no more coming unless they can demonstrate that they
used more than I estimated. Sometimes they do and I don't give them a hard
time, but I do check to make sure that they haven't walked off the job..


Ask them to be a bit more organized because it is a money and safety
issue.


--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
Georgetown, TX


But they are professionals! *Don't they want to be treated as one?


I don't get it.


Professionals today are not what professionals were when I was
younger. *In the old days, missing 3 days of work over a month
would get you fired. *Showing up late more than three times a
month would get you fired. *Using company time to make phone
calls would get you fired. *Spending too much time in the
bathroom would get you fired. *Wasting materials would get you
fired. *Not knowing how to do your job would get you fired.


Nowadays, if you fire someone, you had better be ready to defend
yourself in court, unless you have a document trail showing every
thing that he did to cause him to be fired and every infraction
had better be signed by the employee.


Not only that, but if you count the number of personal phone calls he
makes, you had better count the number of phone calls every other
employee makes, too. Otherwise your ass is in a sling for singling him
out.



In addition, it is very hard to come by anyone to work, much less
quality workers. *I no longer employ ANY workers (except for the
occasional day laborer) and do everything by subcontractors.
When I did have employees, there would not be a week that went by
that someone didn't come on the jobsite and offer them work at
another company, for more money!


The trades are suffering, because kids don't perceive any glamor and
prestige in them. And then by the time an apprentice becomes a useful
journeyman, he sets up shop for himself. My mechanic, plumber, and
electrician are all guys that work by themselves. They've all tried the
employee route, but it takes at least six guys to make that business
model viable, and it's a PITA in many ways.

I don't know if this is still the case, but when I spent a month in
Germany as a high school exchange student in the early 70's, high school
was for the academically gifted students who almost always went on to
college and a "professional" career. The other kids were sent to trade
schools after junior high, so that by the time they were 18 they had a
reasonable level of skill as a tradesman of one sort or another. Makes
more sense to me than what we do here in the U.S.





So, I guess that treating them like I do, IS treating them like
the professionals of today. *When you get a real professional on
the job, you will quickly be aware of it, and treat them
accordingly. *It doesn't take long to recognize the difference.- Hide quoted text -


- Show quoted text -- Hide quoted text -

- Show quoted text -


Makes more sense to me than what we do here in the U.S.

You mean giving a high school diploma to a kid who can barely read at
the fifth grade level so you (1) "don't hurt his feelings" and (2)
keep the school's graduation numbers up?

You mean banning dodgeball because the jocks beat on the nerds?

You mean cancelling music and art because officials think test scores
will go up if the kids take more "academic courses"?

You mean not keeping score at sporting events because "it's not about
who wins or loses"?

What could *possibly* go wrong in a system like that?



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wrote

I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of


Something that bothers me.

I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.

Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it


Grin, happens. I'll go against the grain of the others and say this isnt
really a problem although it's not all that much fun if you have to cleanup
after them and they leave cans in the attic.

Had some plummers here, working til 10pm on a split pipe. It was cold
(possibly no more than 20F). I was running the tea pot with lots of hot
tea, powdered fancy coffee, and even made up a batch of hot spiced cider
(non-alchohol type). I fed'em home made dinner, showed them the phone if
they needed to make a call, and said anything in the fridge was fair game.
Then we made any runs they needed for supplies.

Great guys, great job, lots of cups let go cold as they concentrated on the
*work* and would forget they left a cup of now lukewarm tea or whatever
someplace grin.


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On Apr 8, 6:36 pm, "cshenk" wrote:
wrote

I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
Something that bothers me.


I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.


Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it


Grin, happens. I'll go against the grain of the others and say this isnt
really a problem although it's not all that much fun if you have to cleanup
after them and they leave cans in the attic.

Had some plummers here, working til 10pm on a split pipe. It was cold
(possibly no more than 20F). I was running the tea pot with lots of hot
tea, powdered fancy coffee, and even made up a batch of hot spiced cider
(non-alchohol type). I fed'em home made dinner, showed them the phone if
they needed to make a call, and said anything in the fridge was fair game.
Then we made any runs they needed for supplies.

Great guys, great job, lots of cups let go cold as they concentrated on the
*work* and would forget they left a cup of now lukewarm tea or whatever
someplace grin.


There is a bit of a difference between an emergency repair at night
and a planned project extending over a number of days. I'm entirely
with you about treating the guys right, but that's a two way street
and they shouldn't treat the owner poorly, which is what MC's guys are
doing...at least as far as the drinks and materials are concerned. I
think that's indicative of their attitude, don't you?

I also wonder how they could be so far off on estimating EMT
couplings. Do you think that they all have early onset dementia or
that the house is so freakin' huge they couldn't find their way back
to where they left the boxes of couplings? They knew they didn't
finish a single box - 50 couplings goes a _long_ way on a residential
job. From the cheap seats it smells like those couplings, and
whatever other materials aren't nailed down might take a stroll with
the guys when they leave. Why else ask the owner for 150 couplings?

R
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On Tue, 08 Apr 2008 13:43:51 GMT, Robert Allison
wrote:

Nowadays, if you fire someone, you had better be ready to defend
yourself in court, unless you have a document trail showing every
thing that he did to cause him to be fired and every infraction
had better be signed by the employee.


Just a note. If the employee leaves a suicide note at home;
threatening too kill himself, and the wife calls the job just in
time...he gets fired with little paper work (it has happened).

His employment was not terminated on the spot, so too speak!

He was fired after a signature, and duty weapons were removed from
possession (on the spot)! The bosses should have had a thick folder of
documents on this one



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"RicodJour" wrote

Great guys, great job, lots of cups let go cold as they concentrated on
the
*work* and would forget they left a cup of now lukewarm tea or whatever
someplace grin.


There is a bit of a difference between an emergency repair at night


Emergency yes, but they started at 10am. Fed'em lunch then dinner. One
wasnt able to eat green peppers as I recall and the other was a vegetarian.
Had hot food snacks going all day suitable for both so they could come in
and warm up. No, this isnt required, but it just was how my Mom raised me
to be. I sent'em home with a loaf of home made rye bread from the
breadmaker after they raved at the first loaf. After all, they were there
long enough to let the breakmaker cook and spin out a second one g.

and a planned project extending over a number of days. I'm entirely
with you about treating the guys right, but that's a two way street
and they shouldn't treat the owner poorly, which is what MC's guys are
doing...at least as far as the drinks and materials are concerned. I
think that's indicative of their attitude, don't you?


I saw a worry about the partly drunk drinks but I didnt see the note on the
materials. Perhaps I missed that?

I'm not even remotely enough electrically savy to know what a coupling is.


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"RicodJour" wrote in message
...
On Apr 8, 1:00 am, "MiamiCuse" wrote:
"RicodJour" wrote in message

...



On Apr 7, 2:16 pm, wrote:
I have hired a team of electrician (3 of them) to do some re-wiring of
the house I am working on. They are 50% completion and I have been
furnishing all the materials.


Something that bothers me.


I hooked up a fridge and told them to help themselves, I asked them
what they like and everyone seems to like Arizona ice tea or
Gatorade. So I stock the fridge full with those drinks.


Problem, at the end of the day I go around and between the three of
them it is not unusual that I found 15 or more drink bottles. They
drink a lot? Noooooo... most of those are 80% full. So they worked
in the kitchen, went and got a drink, took three sips, leave it
sitting on a half framed wall, 30 minutes later he moves up into the
attic to pull some wire, goes to the fridge and pull out a new cold
drink, carries it into the attic, took three sips and sat it down in
the attic...so at the end of the day they went through half a dozen
16oz drinks but only drank a little out of each.


Same thing with materials. I got them a box of EMT couplings, 50 of
them, three days later they needed more, ok another 50, then another
50, I started to wonder, that is 150 EMT couplings, they have not laid
that much pipes. I walked around and round up everything and yes I
have 3 boxes of couplings, almost 90% full in each of them, so they
forgot where they left something and ordered new. Same thing with
wire nuts, connectors, MC connectors, reducing washers, switch plates,
outlets etc...just seemed to be misplaced.


Now I am not worried too much about these materials, compared to the
labor it's insignificant, but is that an indication that they may be
sloppy and absent minded in the wiring as well?


Surfeit does not make people happy. It makes them wasteful. Bob
Allison has it right with the big jug of Gatorade. Give them three
plastic cups and use a Sharpie marker to put their initials on each
cup. It's a little late in the game to switch, and you might be
shooting yourself in the foot by doing so, so maybe you should just
stock that fridge with three or four bottles per man.


Electricians should be able to estimate their material needs to within
10%. You should have done a takeoff before starting the job and had
the estimated amount of materials on the job with a bit over for the
unforeseen. In reality, you're probably not saving much money at all
by buying the materials. The electricians will have an account with
their local supply house and will pay no more than you pay at a big
box store, probably less, and they'll get the same or better
materials.


Those additional materials will start disappearing. Ask them for a
list of what they'll need to finish the job and then give them that
and only that. You're living at the house, right? So if they run out
they can just ask you for additional.


No I am not living at the house. No way will I live on a construction
site
anymore!

I will move in when it's habitable.


Didn't know you'd moved out - when did that happen? The rest of the
advice still goes, and additional emphasis on the extra material
walking.

R


I never moved in. I bought the house and have been working on it on and
off, and will move in when it gets done one day.

MC


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On Apr 9, 11:04 pm, "MiamiCuse" wrote:
"RicodJour" wrote in message
On Apr 8, 1:00 am, "MiamiCuse" wrote:
"RicodJour" wrote in message
On Apr 7, 2:16 pm, wrote:


No I am not living at the house. No way will I live on a construction
site
anymore!


I will move in when it's habitable.


Didn't know you'd moved out - when did that happen? The rest of the
advice still goes, and additional emphasis on the extra material
walking.


I never moved in. I bought the house and have been working on it on and
off, and will move in when it gets done one day.


Hmmm, I wonder where I got the idea you were in the house? Maybe it
was the way you were talking a month or so ago about the light at the
end of the tunnel looking pretty dim. What projects do you have
coming up?

R
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