Better Together

A critical outcome of a project kickoff is changing our pronouns – when you and me becomes we.

For our projects at Advoco, the you is our customer and me is Advoco and together we deliver project success. Even better is when the you and me is our customer’s operations and maintenance organizations who for the first time consider themselves a we.

The bottom line, we are better together.

Whether tying Advoco to our customer’s business success or tying maintenance improvement to operations success (preferably both), this is where the magic starts and project success is more certain.

As we kickoff the new year, I’m glancing in my 2018 rearview in preparation to move forward in 2019.

2018 came with several personal struggles: my dad passed after a courageous battle with a long-term illness and both my mom and youngest daughter had critical health scares.

I learned very quickly how much I needed “we” and this note is my way of encouraging you to support your team in and out of the office.

My dad’s funeral was a day filled with many emotions from grief and sadness to indescribable gratefulness and pride. I will never forget the turnaround in emotions when I looked up and saw my boss and mentor Marty Osborn and co-worker Jefferson Sturkey during the visitation time.

And it gets better, right next to them was our customer, Stan Belk from Wayne Farms. I’ll never forget their selfless acts and will be forever grateful as they helped me conduct my dad’s funeral.

We are better together.

My mom and daughter’s health crisis happened during the same timeframe, as well as our efforts to earn business from two strategic customers. Out of bandwidth, I needed a we and the we included several from our team (you know who you are!). The way we came together as a team to present winning solutions was moving and I’m grateful.

And there’s more. In each case, both of these customers knew my situation and reached out to me – after hours and on the weekends – to check on my mom, my daughter, and me.

We are better together.

As we head into 2019, I encourage you to get involved with your teammates. Make it personal. Make it we, and we will be better together.

Until next time...we are Advoco, make every minute count.

About James: James serves as Advoco’s Maintenance Improvement Practice Lead. His career has been dedicated to Reliable Plant Operations Performance, with experience ranging from “mega projects on a global scale” with Fluor Corporation to owning and operating a South Carolina-based plant services company. Known affectionately in the office by his childhood nickname Jimbo, he is passionate about restoring the value and pride in American Manufacturing through our Reliable Operation Initiative (ROI) and PRIDE in Maintenance implementation approach. He’s also known for dropping “idea bombs” – his way of challenging others to think differently in order to solve problems. If you have a question for James or Jimbo (he answers to both!), send him an email.