Professional Development – Truss Design: A Trick My Day Job Never Taught Me That GDI Did – Part 19

Every business has a list of values that were created to inform how they do business. Being distinct from the product or service being provided they communicate to customers or employees what to expect of the business. A hypothetical company, let’s call it “A-Z”, might have a list that looks like this:

  • Ethical business practices
  • Proper training
  • Employees
  • Quality product / service
  • On time / on budget
  • Reliable
  • Clear communication
  • Customer care

customer-is-king

So, A-Z says that they “value” all these things. How do we know whether or not they do? We examine their practices. If “Customer care” is important to A-Z and you call with a problem with the product and no one picks up the phone, or they bite our head off if they do pick up, then their claim falls flat. Conversely, if they listen to you, then assist with courtesy to correct the problem, their claim to value customer care holds true.

A more potent example is what A-Z’s employees think. An employee can smell hypocrisy from a mile away.

Training is one of those things that is often touted but rarely followed through with by businesses. Customers are led to believe that they will have well-trained professionals serving them, but the reality is often far from the ideal.

When I started Professional Development with Gould Design, Inc. (GDI), I didn’t know what to expect. I saw a list of “values” and “commitments” but I knew that it would take time to discern the validity of these claims. The training has confirmed that GDI is the real deal and that they are relentless in applying their stated values to their business.

One particular area is in Professional Development. While I have extensive hands on construction experience coming in, I had no design experience. Thankfully, GDI took an in-depth look at where I was at and catered their training to get me up to speed in a step by step process.

Through this time they’ve identified my proclivities, strengths and weaknesses, and where to place more or less emphasis. It has been both structured and dynamic: I have goals but they are changed as I grow and change. Some feedback I received:

  • Ask more questions.
  • Utilize the experienced designers on staff, they REALLY want to help.
  • Slow down. Don’t rush the process. Slow down.

training-pipeline

While there have been times that I felt like this, it has not been caused by GDI in pushing me too far, too fast, but by my own inflated expectations. Christopher Gould told me recently that stress is self-induced. This is true to any situation. By getting stressed we actually lose our ability to function in an efficient and effective manner. By slowing down we actually improve our retention of information and our productivity.

At the end of the day this is what has impressed me the most (so far) about GDI and makes me all the more determined to complete my training and join their ranks. I have not been rushed into live work unprepared. I am not making choices that could affect million dollar homes or multi-million dollar commercial projects. I am being thoroughly prepared for the job ahead. I won’t start live work until GDI is thoroughly satisfied that I am ready. This is what I’m taking away right now and applying to my day job. I’m taking the time to train when it applies, and it pays off.

So, if you say that you value your employees I challenge you to prove it. Do what GDI does and give them the information, tools, and instruction to succeed in their work. They will become more invested if they sense that you are invested in them and that you back it up beyond the black and white of promotional material.

You can read Part 1 in this series here.

You can read Part 2 in this series here.

You can read Part 3 in this series here.

You can read Part 4 in this series here.

You can read Part 5 in this series here.

You can read Part 6 in this series here.

You can read Part 7 in this series here.

You can read Part 8 in this series here.

You can read Part 9 in this series here.

You can read Part 10 in this series here.

You can read Part 11 in this series here.

You can read Part 12 in this series here.

You can read Part 13 in this series here.

You can read Part 14 in this series here.

You can read Part 15 in this series here.

You can read Part 16 in this series here.

You can read Part 17 in this series here.

You can read Part 18 in this series here.

Stay tuned for Part 20.

Tim Hoke – Design Trainee

Gould Design, Inc.