Recruiting for the waste industry, no matter the position is challenging. Presenting opportunities for advancement are always attractants that play to our desires to improve. No one likes to be in the same position they were 10 years ago, so presenting opportunities for growth and advancement to new and veteran employees is a good idea to implement into your business strategy.
Filling a Position
When attempting to fill a position, one of the first questions a manager might ask is if he has anyone from his current employee roster that fits the bill. For sake of this topic, let’s discuss filling an operations manager position. Depending on the size of your business, public or private, this position may be asked to do more or less depending on the employer. The basic principle: can the operations manager run the assigned operations? Can he ensure that the trucks leave and return daily, work safely, handle employees, deal with customers, resolve conflict, etc.?
When you have the job description you are looking to fill, ask yourself: should I find someone within or search from outside the company? I have seen both attempts succeed and fail. Most of the time it boils down to finding someone who is hardworking, dedicated, honest and with experience. When searching from outside, I would encourage you to use the services of the many recruiting firms serving our industry. We are always searching for qualified applicants. We are constantly growing as a company at Florida Express Environmental, so we have an ongoing need for all positions waste related. From the bottom to the top, we keep the opportunities open because you never know what edge someone with experience can bring to an already experienced team.
Outside or Inside?
When searching outward, I would encourage one tip, don’t forget the word recruit. The best talent in this industry is currently employed. If they are at home, waiting for a job, frankly, they aren’t the person needed to fill your position. I always tell the recruiters to find someone who is happy in their position, has an experienced track record and I will make them even happier.
Filling a position from within has many benefits as well. You can find someone who is already comfortable with your work environment, one who already has a clue to the big picture, depending on their tenure and experience. Through the years, we have promoted from within the company and have always seen great success in these individuals. I have been
able to lead many of my employees to believe that they too can be part of the big picture. We have two current employees that both improve every day in learning what it takes to make a business run. I have full confidence that one day soon they will be able to run it with little intervention from upper management. This is the path I took as I grew in the waste industry. I started from the bottom and worked my way up. Those that have hands-on background experience will never be beat in this business. You can’t teach an educated person hands-on experience, but you can educate someone with experience. We have enrolled managers in business classes to assist them in the tools they need to succeed from behind the frontline.
Go with Your Gut
Deciding to fill open positions is never an easy one; there are always costs and risks associated with both styles of hiring that will never be avoided. The best practice is to always go with your gut. If you have the ability to hire and fire, someone has the faith in you that you know what pieces of the puzzle are needed to execute the task properly. Have faith in yourself and the decisions you make. Also remember that you could change someone’s entire life course by presenting them with an opportunity to succeed. What better way to reward a hardworking member of your team than with an opportunity to better the life for themselves and their family? Take care of your staff and they will be there to take care of you. We are all in this together. | WA
John Paglia, III is a 4th generation garbage man. Before he climbed the ranks to become Florida Express Environmental’ s (Ocala, FL) General Manager, he had a successful career in college and professional athletics. John has been around the garbage industry since his car seat days. Currently, John is focused on growing his company and offering the highest level of customer service and prolonging the world that we live in today. John wakes up every day knowing the impact professional haulers have on their community is far greater than most realize. He can be reached at (352) 629-4349, e-mail John3@ floridaexpress.us or visit www.floridaexpress.us.