I just… I just… what the fuck, over?
Just, what the fuck?
I’m sitting at my desk here, right now, plowing through all sorts of customer related incidents and scheduling and repair coordination and parts ordering.
I’m feeling like a champion because I beat down our billing system from four pages down to less than one page of outstanding orders to invoice. I’m bringing home the bacon.
While I’m sitting my butt down behind a desk, I have my fleet of service techs out there right now, busily representing us to the customers, performing the repairs, installing the parts, doing inspections.
From out of nowhere, I get a call from one of our most remote service techs. Or perhaps I should, one of our more far out techs.
I’ve got this guy out being a hero for a customer. Customer had a busted system, big old honking $250,000 machinery installation, and they had all sorts of studs (multi-level threaded structural bolts) that had sheared off from side load force.
Customer had tried some other service provider, and they quoted 6 weeks to replace, ordered the parts, and then when the parts came in, they were the wrong parts. Customer was looking at waiting ANOTHER 6 weeks for the right parts to come in, and turned to me.
“Help me, Big Bear Butt, you’re my only hope! I can’t be down ANOTHER SIX WEEKS!”
I understand. I’m here for you.
Well, your biggest problem is, you didn’t come to me first. But that’s okay, I can help. I’ll send a guy up today, pull one of those studs out, I’ll draw it up in CAD and have a machine shop match the hardness, fabricate you a new set, we’ll get it heat treated and back to you installed in less than two weeks.
Customer swoons. Sales are made. BIG money. Happiness descends across the land, and another competitor falls before the might of the Bear.
Or so I thought.
I’ve got my guy there RIGHT NOW, installing the newly machined studs, and he gives me a call.
All I want to hear from him is, “Mission accomplished, and I’m on my way to my next scheduled assignment.”
What I hear instead, is “Hey, the customer wants to know what our safety policy is concerning running my lift while it’s still on the trailer.”
“What did you say? I know what all those words mean individually, but placed together the way you said them, they make no sense to me.”
“The customer wants to know what OUR safety policy is concerning me running my man lift while it’s still on the trailer.”
“So wait. Let me… just, okay. So, you’re saying… you used the man lift while it was still on the trailer.”
“Yes, I backed the trailer under the equipment and then got in and used the lift while it was still on it.”
“On IT. The trailer. While the lift was still ON the TRAILER.”
“So you’re saying… the lift. The man lift. The lift that takes you 26′ into the sky to fix shit… this lift was still on the two-wheeled little trailer you use to haul it around behind your truck. It was on the trailer when you used it.”
I can’t believe I’m asking this. The words, they come out of my mouth, but they can’t be right. I must not understand.
“Yes, the customer wants to know what our safety policy is concerning that.”
“You know, I’m going to have to get back to you on that. I just slapped my palm so hard across my face I just knocked a few of my own teeth out, and I need to go clean up the blood and find them. I’ll call you back.”
For those of you out there wondering, “What’s the big deal?”, let me explain something.
If you are a contractor, you carry insurance. You have safety policies. You have procedures.
One of the procedures is, you follow the safety policies of the customer when you are on the customer’s work site, unless your own policies are STRICTER.
If a customer requires personnel to wear safety goggles, steel toe boots, a rigging harness and fall arrestor strap, high visibility yellow mesh vests, a hard hat with special stickers denoting training completed, ear plugs AND ear muffs and a feather sticking out of your ass, YOU WEAR THEM.
You follow the customers rules, ALWAYS when on their property, unless your own rules are MORE stringent, not less.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go have lunch, and a fifth of tequila, and contemplate our being banned from a customer because one of my geniuses decides to back the truck right the fuck on up and then use a 26′ man lift because he was too fucking lazy to back it off the lift first.
Oh, and HAPPY FRIDAY!!!!