Meeting Maxons!

Meetign Maxons

Our Blog series, “Meeting Maxons!” continues this week. We will hear from Gregg, a Client Services Associate, about his experiences at Maxons.

Q:  How long have you been with Maxons?

A:  I started in 2001, and stayed for six years.  Then I can back in 2015, altogether almost 8 years.

 

Q:  Do you remember what your impressions were of the company after being here for about a month?

A:  Having been at other places, here you can see the commitment to culture and it is one of the best things about this place.  It is practiced and given attention.  We care about maintaining healthy information and database as well, that is easy to let slide, but it make all of our jobs so much easier.

Upper management is really emotionally healthy and that filters through the entire organization and there is a large level of transparency, and everyone has an equal opportunity to learn grow and succeed and, it is really unique and wonderful to find.

 

Q:  What was the first thing you had to learn when joining the team?

A:  Had to learn what the business was in the very beginning.  And I happened to join the company after one of the largest disasters and tragedies this country had ever seen, so I had to learn quickly.

 

Q:  What is the most important thing you have learned since you have been here?

A:  Communication and mutual respect go a long way.  Don’t over promise and under deliver, it is not only a great rule for business, but a great rule for life.  And that our core values are not only business values, they are personal values.

 

Q:  Why do you have a passion for this industry?

A:  I think it is truly a business where you are helping people.  Whether you are actually out in the field or not, someone calls and they have a real need for our help.  It’s a wonderful feeling to either help get someone get back on their feet, get their home or business back together.  Whether we are dealing with the end user or other professionals in the industry, it is nice to hear our work is appreciated.  By doing a good job we make sure everyone looks good.

 

Q:  Which company core value speaks to you the most – and why?

A:   I really like responsibility, and enjoyment!  I think if you take responsibility for something the rest of it will all fall into place.  No one here can say “it’s not my job” everyone takes ownership of anything that may come their way.  By doing this it touches on all our other values.

I also think a lot of people don’t enjoy where they work, and I love that here it is a major tenant of our company.  People spend a lot of time at work, and if you don’t enjoy it, you can’t do your job well.

 

Q:  What is your favorite Maxons story?

A:  One of the reasons I love this company so much is that I started during 9/11 and it was an intense, full on experience.  There was a sense of us all pulling together.  I have never had an experience like that.  Where dealing with something so tragic, yet I felt like I was contributing and making progress.  In the midst of all that I made great relationships with coworkers and it was a foundation of my young professional live.  It speaks to the character of this place, that despite what seemed like an impossible task we pulled together and cared about each other.  This part of the company has lasted, even when we deal with catastrophes still, we pull together and have an intense focus on the needs of our customers and clients.  And it is why I am so happy to be able to come back.

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Meeting Maxons!

Our Blog series, “Meeting Maxons!” continues this week. We will hear from Sarah, a Senior Project Coordinator, about her experiences at Maxons.

Q:  How long been with Maxons?

A:  5 Years.

 

Q:  Do you remember what your impressions were of the company after being here for about a month?

A:  I remember my first initial impression!  I instantly knew it was going to be a different company than I’d ever worked for before.  Before I started I got flowers delivered to my apartment!  It was a relief to be going to a company that appreciates employees, a place that was just excited to have me starting as I was.  Everyone was friendly and welcoming.  I could tell everyone was close knit, and everyone truly cared about each other, inside and outside of work.

 

Q:  What was the first thing you had to learn when joining the team?

A:  Goldmine!  How to navigate in the program.

 

Q:  What is the most important thing you have learned since you have been here?

A:  One of the big things I have learned is to have more confidence in my work, and in general in the office.  A lot of my job is holding my Project Managers accountable – I have gained the courage to speak up and keep them in line when they need it.  When I first started I wasn’t confident enough to do that.  Now that I am leading some regional meetings I have become more outspoken.

 

Q:  Why do you have a passion for this industry?

A:  I like it because I am always dealing with a new situation.  Each day is always different, I get to interact with so many different customers.  Sometimes people are frantic when they call, and I like being able to talk them through it and calm them down.  I explain that we are there to help them.  It is also nice to see the start and the end of project – and how quickly we can make a difference to our customers and clients.

 

Q:  Which company core value speaks to you the most – and why?

A:  Teamwork- I think our company revolves around that.  I have seen how important that is over this last summer.  We had stretches of time where we were short handed.  We didn’t skip a beat – we came together to get everything done and provide awesome customer service.  It seems like it comes natural to everyone here, to pitch in when needed.  We don’t have to put work towards teamwork, we just do it.

 

Q:  What is your favorite Maxons story?

A:  Participating in Tough Mudder with a group from Maxons was such an amazing experience and accomplishment!  We really bonded – working towards the goal for so long together in training.  We all completed the course and could celebrate that night together and it brought us closer together as a group.

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Meeting Maxons!

Meetign Maxons

Our Blog series, “Meeting Maxons!” continues this week. We will hear from Lou, a Project Manager, about his experiences at Maxons.

Q:  How long been with Maxons?

A:  7 years.

 

Q:  Do you remember what your impressions were of the company after being here for about a month?

A:  That we were pretty well organized, and we knew what we were doing.  I had worked for others in the industry who were not put together as well.

 

Q:  What was the first thing you had to learn when joining the team?

A:  The Maxons way – I knew the work, but had to learn how to do it our way.

 

Q:  What is the most important thing you have learned since you have been here?

A:  Negotiation.  I can take this personally, but now I understand it is give and take and I don’t need to take it personally.

 

Q:  Why do you have a passion for this industry?

A:  I like to help people, and I like the people I work with.

 

Q:  Which company core value speaks to you the most – and why?

A:  Our brand anchors – speed communication expertise, and of those, speed really means a lot to me.  Because I try to act as quickly as possible to whatever needs to be done – I like to get things done.

 

Q:  What is your favorite Maxons story?

A:   We were planning to do a relay race at our summer outing one year.  Alan and I decided we were going to practice to get an advantage on race day!  We were running up and down the hallway practicing for our event – confusing our neighbors!  It totally worked – we were the best at our part of the race!

And I have another good one to share.  One time on a job I was with one of my coworkers, Andrea.  A pump had gotten clogged at the site.  When I went to look at it, I touched the top of it and it burst!  Filthy water from a parking garage sprayed all over Andrea and I.  I quickly stood in front of her and we ran from the room.  We got outside and she said “Look at me.”  Filthy water was dripping down her face.  I responded “You look terrific.” We both cracked up!

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Meeting Maxons!

Our Blog series, “Meeting Maxons!” continues this week. We will hear from Debbie, a Senior Project Coordinator, about her experiences at Maxons.

Q:  How long been with Maxons?

A:  16.5 years

 

Q:  Do you remember what your impressions were of the company after being here for about a month?

A:  It was a lot more technically savvy than my previous company, I didn’t have much prior experience with computers and Maxons was a bit ahead of the curve for a small firm (we were much smaller then!).

 

Q:  What was the first thing you had to learn when joining the team?

A:  Learning how to use email (right away I learned you don’t capitalize and bold in emails as that is perceived as yelling – I had to learn that real quick).  I had to figure out scanning and the estimating programs.  And then learning collections, everyone at Maxons gets involved in collecting payments!

 

Q:  What is the most important thing you have learned since you have been here?

A:  That turning a bad situation into a positive situation is what we do, and it is rewarding to do so.  And that communication is the key in doing that – and anything!

 

Q:  Why do you have a passion for this industry?

A:  To really just help people, to make a difficult situation into a good situation.

 

Q:  Which company core value speaks to you the most – and why?

A:  I can relate to all our core values, but the one that speaks to me is Responsibility.  Being accountable for our words, attitudes, and efforts.

 

Q:  What is your favorite Maxons story?

A:  I have so many stories in my 16 years!  One of my favorites is from many years ago.  At our first summer outing, my car battery died.  Damon went out and bought a new battery for my car and a few of my coworkers helped me get it installed!  I was able to drive home and didn’t have to get towed – it was so sweet of all of them.

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And Debbie at a Maxons Halloween party!

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Checking in on Work In Progress!

Occasionally in our industry we get called into situations where a customer has had their health impacted as a result of their property damage.  Our staff is always very aware of these situations and takes the extra time and care these situations require.  Our Senior Project Coordinator, Angeliki Zontanos, relates one of the stories below and stresses the importance of not only doing the right job, but listening, empathizing and caring for our customers every step of the way:

I recently was working on a job where my main contact was a tenant’s mother.  She had called in a fire damage that was the result of a cooking fire.  After speaking with the customer’s mother I learned that her daughter had actually suffered 3rd degree burns as a result of this fire was in the intensive care unit recovering.

The mother has been running back and forth, staying at the hospital at all hours of the day to tend to her daughter as well as handling the fire damage clean-up at the apartment on her own.  She had never experienced a property damage like this before and they are not filing an insurance claim so she has no one else to help to guide her through the restoration process.

Throughout this process, I have been communicating with the mother by answering questions, informing her the crew’s arrival and assuring her that we will have the apartment cleaned thoroughly before her daughter’s return.  This was a huge concern as due to her daughter’s condition, her skin is sensitive and the apartment must be cleaned thoroughly from any residue from smoke or grease.

When I proceeded with the follow up call to see how the job was going, the mother informed me she is “grateful” as she is currently “exhausted” and encountering her own health issues; at the time of the call, she was experiencing a headache.  The mother said that the crew was working hard and “appreciates” our call as she “trusts” in us and the work being performed; so much so, she left during mid-day as she felt she was in our crew’s way.

It made me realize that when you take a step back, it is easy to see who our follow up calls and showing compassion makes a difference; it also makes you appreciate and value those around you.

~Angeliki Zontanos

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Thanksgiving Safety Tips

Thanksgiving is a day full of enticing smells, good company and lots of laughs – but along with the enjoyable chaos is the reality that cooking fires are three times more likely to occur on Thanksgiving than any other day of the year. In addition to cooking and entertaining, Maxons Restorations is reminding families to take a minute for safety. Whether you plan to keep your meal traditional with Grandma’s favorite recipes, or want to add a dash of gourmet to impress your guests, make sure these safety tips are ingredients in all your dishes.

Safety Tips for the Feast

While you get busy in the kitchen, make sure that safety doesn’t get lost in the whirlwind:

  • Keep the cooking range free of clutter. Even though you have myriad dishes to prepare, don’t overload a cook top with too many pots and pans. Trying to cook all your dishes at once could cause grease to accidentally spill onto a range top and cause a fire.
  • Do not try to hold your child in one arm while cooking with the other. Holding a child while cooking is an invitation for a burn. It’s best to keep your child out of the kitchen while you’re cooking.
  • Never put a glass casserole or lid on the stove or over a burner. If it gets hot and explodes, it will send dangerous shards of glass in all directions.
  • Do not pour water on a grease fire. Pouring water on a grease fire can cause the fire to spread. In the event of a range-top fire, turn off the burner, put on an oven mitt and smother the flames by carefully sliding a lid onto the pan. Leave the lid in place until the pot or pan is cooled.
  • Evaluate appliances wisely and look for the UL mark. When purchasing electric cooking products such as electric knives, slow cookers and food processors, look for the UL mark. The UL mark is one of the most widely recognized and trusted safety symbols among consumers. Manufacturers use it to indicate that a product meets specific safety standards.
  • Avoid using a turkey fryer. Because turkey fryers pose a number of distinct safety concerns, including burn and fire hazards. If a family decides they must use a turkey fryer this Thanksgiving use extreme caution.
  • Keep a clean work surface. Be sure to wash surfaces, utensils, the sink and hands after handling raw food. It’s a good idea to identify one cutting board for raw meats and one for other uses.
  • Un-stuff the turkey. According to the USDA, for optimum safety, stuffing a turkey is not recommended. For more even cooking, cook the stuffing outside the bird in a casserole dish until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Thaw the bird with care. If using a frozen turkey, the USDA recommends thawing it in the refrigerator in its original wrapping, in a tray or pan that can catch any juices that may leak.
  • Call for help. If you’ve accidentally cooked the giblets inside the turkey, melted the “hock lock” or have any other questions about cooking your Thanksgiving bird, be safe and call the pros at the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline: 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854)

Everyday Essentials for Kitchen Safety

Kitchen safety should remain top of mind throughout the year, not just on Thanksgiving. Here are some great tips to remember in the kitchen.

  • Keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen in case of emergency and know how to use it. Make sure the fire extinguisher is UL Listed and rated for grease and electrical fires. Read the directions carefully before an actual emergency occurs. The acronym P.A.S.S.can help make sure you use it properly.
    • Pull the pin; Aim the spray nozzle low at the base of the fire; Squeeze the nozzle to spray the contents; Sweep back and forth as you spray the base of the fire.
  • Always keep a potholder, oven mitt and lid handy while cooking.If a small fire starts in a pan on the stove, put on a flame-resistant oven mitt and smother the flames by carefully sliding the lid over the pan. Turn off the burner. Don’t remove the lid until the food has cooled.
    • When removing lids on hot pans, tilt them away from you to protect your face and hands from steam. If there is an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed to prevent flames from burning you or your clothing.
  • Never wear loose fitting clothing when cooking. Long, open sleeves could ignite and catch fire from a gas flame or a hot burner. Wear short, close fitting or tightly rolled sleeves when cooking. If you have long hair, be sure to tie it back.
  • Keep smoke alarms connected while cooking. Smoke alarms can save lives. Make sure smoke alarms are installed and working.
  • Stay in the kitchen while food is cooking. Most fires in the kitchen occur because food is left unattended.
  • Turn pot handles away. Make sure that young children cannot reach a cooking pot by turning handles toward the back of the stove.
  • Unplug small appliances that aren’t in use. Not only will you save the energy, but you will also avoid the potential dangers if they were to be turned on accidentally.