Growing Business & Customer Service

We’re always trying to find ways to improve our business and our customer service. We’ve grown exponentially in the last couple of years, but with that growth, it became hard to manage the business like it had been. We were so busy, one person couldn’t get back to everyone in a day. Our customers have asked for better customer service, so we’ve responded. We’ve hired two great staff members to run the show. The hard part (or the easy part, depending on which way you look at it) is that they are both named Melissa.

Please join us in welcoming Melissa…and Melissa.

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If you’ve had the pleasure of working with them already in the past few weeks, I’m sure you’ve been pleasantly surprised. We are so thrilled to have them part of our team here at Riddle Services.

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Customer Service is very important to us. Always has been, always will. Our goal here at Riddle Services is that you have a great experience from start to finish. From the first call to one of these team members, to those last moments when your project is complete, we hope it’s a very positive experience. We become friends with our customers because we enjoy what we do and enjoy the people we work with wholeheartedly.

So, when you are ready to have your next home project done, make sure you call Riddle Services and ask for Melissa or Melissa at 419-304-9343. If you want to get on the schedule, that is the quickest way to do it.

We look forward to serving you. Give us a call, or stop in and say hello over here at our office in Levis Commons. Our hope is that you walk away from your experience working with us here at Riddle Services knowing that we work hard to make your (home project) dreams come true. We want you to have a great experience and we value you and your opinions and will make the needed changes.

 

Don’t Get Busted! This is Your Home Pipe Alert RS Style

This happened this week. One small burst pipe. A hole no bigger than the end of your pinky finger. 12,000 gallons of water pouring into this home.

Don’t let this happen to you!

IMG_4979Here at Riddle Restoration, we want to give you some tips to help prevent having a major water disaster in your home this winter.

Prevention BEFORE they are frozen:

Use common sense and keep your pipes warm. Look around your home for areas where water supply lines are located. If any of these places are not heated, consider insulating those pipes. All major home improvement places have simple and cheap supplies for this, but even extra newspaper wrapped around the pipes will help. Areas you should consider are: basement and/or crawl space, attic areas, garage, kitchen and bathroom cabinets.

Other simple tips:

  • Don’t set your thermostat below 55 degrees if you are leaving.
  • Keep your garage door shut to keep cold air out.
  • Open bathroom and kitchen cabinets below sinks to allow more heat in.
  • Consider keeping your home at a consistent temperature day and night. The small cost in heating bills out-weighs the hassle of burst pipes.
  • Be sure to drain swimming pools and sprinkler systems according to manufacturer’s directions.

What to do if the pipes are frozen and have not yet burst (no water or barely a trickle comes out when you turn a faucet on):

  • Turn faucets on so that as water melts it has a place to go. Even if it’s a slow trickle, any water movement helps to keep the pipes from completely freezing.
  • Use a heat source such as a hair dryer, a space heater or even a heating pad. Just be VERY careful with electric elements and keep them away from anything flammable.
  • Run very hot water in your bathtub and put towels in the hot water. Ring out as much water as you can, and then wrap the hot towels around the pipes. Once they cool off, repeat the process.
  • Consider turning off your water supply.

If your pipes burst:

Shut off the main water supply as quickly as possible and call a professional. A burst pipe (just one) can have 4-8 gallons of water a minute shooting into the house.  This means that in a matter of minutes, there can be thousands of dollars of damage.

Call Riddle Restoration at 419-304-9343 and we will be there as quickly as we can. We have a team ready 24-hours a day to help you in these emergency situations. You want the best. Not only do you want the best, you want a company and a team that will immediately make you their priority in your time of need. Your lives turn upside down with busted pipes. Call a company that brings some “calm” to you and your home.

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How do WE do it?

IMG_7350I can’t tell you how many calls I take from people stating how amazing my crew is.

I get asked all the time, “How do you do it”….how do you get an hourly employee who is often working in unideal conditions, doing physical labor, to WANT to go the extra mile?

The answer is actually fairly simple.  Teach it.  Model it.  Expect 110%.  Use “We”.

 

TEACH IT:

Here’s the deal. Anyone can do construction, landscaping or restoration if they really want to.  The skills can be taught, the tools can be bought, but the positive ATTITUDE must be caught.  I teach my crew, and they teach each other, to look for opportunities to provide that extra edge, the “it” factor that separates us from everyone else. Find a way to go above and beyond each day, and do it.

 

MODEL IT:

As the saying goes, a team is only as good as their leader.  I can’t expect my crew to give 110% unless I do the same.  I believe in leading by example, maintaining a positive attitude, and empowering my crew to go into a job with confidence, a smile and a customer focused mindset.  My guys know to never call me if a customer needs or wants something a little different than what was originally planned. Why?  Because they KNOW what I will say—“DO IT!”  Whatever it takes.  I feel the biggest mistake a leader can make is to become detached from what his employees do.  Sometimes you have to set down the paperwork and get out the tools to be reminded of who you are. When the boss works alongside of the team, the bar gets raised and amazing things happen.

 

EXPECT NOTHING LESS THAN 110%:

We always look for an opportunity to add value to the job we are doing.  Go the extra mile.  Know the customer and make sure they know you. I won’t settle for anything less than the best, because I know my crew is capable of it and I want our customers to expect it. And mess-ups happen in this line of work.  We have a motto of ‘we are only as good as what we do next’.  Own the mistake, fix the mistake, and make it better than it would have originally been. THIS is what separates a “good” from a “great” company.

 

USE “We”:

This company is not “My” company….it is “Our” company. Each employee is part of something bigger then themselves. “We” are Riddle Services.  “We” are Riddle Restoration.  “We” are a team. On the job, and off the job. When my workers are happy and enjoy their work environment as a team, our customers receive a higher level of care and customer service. Our crews develop bonds and friendships that reach outside of working hours because we have fun and enjoy what we do together.

I talk to my staff about the big picture and where “We”, as a company, are going. They need to know that each of them have played a role in getting Riddle Services and Riddle RestorBreakfast groupation to where it is today, because without them, we would be nothing.  I preach all the time to every one of them that the skills and the relationships that they are building now will be used later in life and in whatever job they do.  It’s not just about Riddle, it’s about creating life time relationships, positive work ethics and lifelong skills.

 

So “how do I do it”….

I teach my team by example, to give nothing less than 110%, so at the end of the day it isn’t “Me” it is “We” that has exceeded the customers’ expectations!

The Man, The Myth, The Legend

A few weeks ago, my dad retired after 40 years of service to the state.  As I sat at his retirement party and listened to him, and the many others that spoke about him, it brought on so many thoughts and memories.  It made me realize that this is how Riddle Services came to be and where we are as a company today.

I think I need to start with a little background about myself. My upbringing was a little different than most. I was born and raised on Put-In-Bay, and island out in the middle of Lake Erie. The “locals” consisted of a very small number. There were only 3 other girls in my class at school. It wasn’t until I was older that I realized that I had a unique childhood. My mom was a child herself when she had my brother, sister and I at ages 13, 15 and 18.  As you can imagine, that brought on its own challenges. Neither of my parents had High School degrees at the time–they later went back and got them. So, growing up, there was never much money available.

I started working when I was quite young–probably 9 or 10. My first job was peeling fat off the chickens at the Chicken Patio. I also started making their potato salad and famous home-made sauce for the chicken. Around that same time, I started to help my dad and step-mom clean the school every evening.  While my friends were out playing and doing their own thing, I spent my “free time” working.

From this young age, work ethic was instilled in me.  I used all my own money to pay for everything since my parents really didn’t have much money. I realized pretty quickly that if I worked hard, I had money to do the things that I wanted to do, and buy the things I wanted to buy.

As I grew up, I used to spend the weekends working with my dad.  We would wake up and go over to work at the State Park and the Fish Hatchery.  We would work from morning until night.  I remember asking my dad, “Hey, when’s lunch?” And his response was, “lunch is when the work is done, and done right.”

Throughout my youth, my dad would do different things to challenge me and to see if I was really understanding what he was doing and trying to teach me. When we were cleaning the schools, he would periodically leave things around to see if I was paying attention to the details.  I will never forget the time he told me in passing, “When I have two people come in for an interview, I set a piece of paper on the ground.  Both of those people may have exactly the same skill sets, but it’s the person that picks up that piece of paper that separates themselves from everyone else.”  I’ve never forgotten that. It’s instilled in my mind that attention to detail and working hard are some of the most important things on a job, and it has made me and Riddle Services what it is today.

With a childhood like mine, I could have had a lot of “excuses” to not excel at what I did. But, it never seemed to be an option in my mind.  As I grew up, I worked a lot of hours. I was given the opportunity to start in management when I was very young.  The opportunities grew from there, and here we are today. We are constantly working hard and trying to improve Riddle Services to be the best that it can be.  One of the things I try to instill in my workers on a daily basis is that hard work wins every time.

As I sat back at my dad’s retirement party, looking around a room filled with people there for him after he had served 40 years with the state, I just smiled and got a little teary-eyed. I was thinking this right here summarizes what hard work looks like—dedication, commitment and treating people right. My dad did it the right way. He worked hard. He took care of people. He always gave his best.

At the party, my dad took the microphone and went around and talked about each person in that room—who they are, what they did and how he appreciates them. My dad connected with each one of those people and understands it’s all a team effort. He made it clear that he is who he is, and has accomplished what he has, because each person in that room is a valuable part of the team. There is nothing my dad wouldn’t jump in and do that he asked his workers to do. It wasn’t about him. Listening to my dad and his commitment to all these people, and the state, was just one of those great moments in life. Yes, he was the state employee of the year. And, yes, he saved so much money by doing things himself vs. calling in people. But it wasn’t for his benefit, it was because he truly enjoyed what he was doing.

That’s why I’m dedicating this first post to him. To the man who taught me these important values in life. To the man I hope to be one day. To the man who gave me the drive to continue making Riddle Services better every day. My hope is that our customers feel the same way every time we work with them. That the relationships we build with them make the jobs more personal for us. That we will work hard and pay attention to the details. That it isn’t about us, but it is always a team effort.  And that we will continue striving to be better than we are today.