Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industry Logo

If you could add one new person to your staff right now, what would be that person’s title (e.g., Director of BIM, Foreman, etc.)? Why is this person needed now?

Estimator. Shortage on qualified estimators and a lot of bid activity on the current market.

—Jorge Lopez, Drywall Estimator, Baker Triangle, Texas

Field BIM Engineer. Someone with an innate understanding of field conditions who can also work inside the virtual and real worlds of BIM models and associated tools such as Total Stations and LiDAR. Why? While knowledge of either discipline is good, knowing both is synergistic (of greater value than the sum of their parts) as the applicability of such knowledge in a productive format will drive our profits and move our company into the future. Tough to find.


Project manager/Estimator. Starting to get busy, and could use one more office person …

—Giles Turgeon, Green Mountain Drywall Co., Inc.

Executive assistant


In-house Attorney. This day and age it seems like no matter what you do, right or wrong, there’s someone out there trying to make a quick buck off of the small businessman. We’ve been pulled into construction defect lawsuits that didn’t have one thing to do with our work or materials installed but still had to add to the pot for “Good Faith” plus pay our attorney’s fees. We’ve had bogus workers comp claims that still went forward because of slack attitudes of workers comp hearing judges. Also an in-house attorney would be great for collections.


Outside salesman


Estimator—no question. Without “sticks in the fire,” the other positions are useless.


A top notch salesperson. With the growth of our business to an international status and our WBE Certification (Women Business Enterprise), we would like to have a person who is motivated, great personality and can sell, sell, sell! Why is it needed now? With all the people I speak to on a daily basis from architects to contractors, the handwriting is on the wall that business is going to pick up and we all want more pieces of the pie when that happens.

—Carol Schary, President/Owner, Nathan Kimmel Company, LLC, Los Angeles, CA

HR manager. I think any company should be constantly recruiting for estimating and project management staff. Qualified people are in short supply, and we need to be actively looking for them all the time.


An estimator. We used to close 1 out of 3 jobs we bid on, now it’s more like 1 out of 15. Usually you are only given two weeks or less to do a bid, which isn’t enough time to do a thorough take-off. We have to pass on a lot of nice projects because my estimator doesn’t have enough time.


Foreman. Denver has a lot of new construction breaking ground this year. It is going to be difficult to staff all the work that is coming up. Solid crew leadership is going to be a crucial part of getting things done.


Title: Director of Accountability. Responsible for converging on given project sites on a continuous basis, day after day, week after week, during the entire duration of our work effort on given projects. [Someone] who will prod (with light-duty taser assist if necessary) the general contractor’s or, heaven forbid, the construction manager’s on-site representative to actually walk the project in order to be able to understand the sequence of operations so that given projects have a chance of running reasonably smoothly!

—Howard F. Hopson, Hopson Specialty Systems, LLC, Forty Fort, Pennsylvania

An attorney. Contracts are so confusing now. I try to keep up with new laws applying to construction, but it is difficult.


A BPI auditor and installer.


Estimator. We have been doing a lot of bidding and could really use one person to do this rather than taking our president’s valuable time or job site supervisors off the job to do this.

—Mary Pauly, CFO, J & J Industries Inc., Jordan, Minnesota

Collections. 60 & 90 days are getting normal.


Project manager/estimator


I would kill for an all-purpose organizer with killer accounting skills and mild OCD. Not sure what kind of title I would give this person, but they would certainly be one of my most valuable people. Maybe their title would be “VP of Awesomeness.” They one thing I really need more than anything right now is someone who can come in and keep all the books and my office organized and running efficiently so I can stay focused on growing my company. It’s a skill that many claim to have but few really do.
—Craig Favors Owner Craig Favors & Associates, LLC Dallas, Texas

Marketing/Communications specialist. In a major ramp-up mode, and there are a number of marketing/writing/communications (including Web and social/professional media) needs that are not being adequately addressed.


Quality, dependable journeymen / drywallers


Estimator/Project manager. Running the business after losing a partner (brother) to death several years ago has proven to be a considerable challenge. Being a family business, it would be nice to have a family member fill in this spot. However, there is no one interested or capable. It looks like adding this person from outside the family is the way we will go.

—Roger Olson, Owner Sig Olson & Sons Plastering, Inc. Moorhead, Minnesota

It would be great to have another “me,” one who had the knowledge to go out look at jobs, do takeoffs and come back to the office and prepare an estimate and email the estimates out to the client, then follow that up with a phone call. Plus visit the jobs in progress and check with the crews or clients and make sure all is running smoothly.

—Asars Inc., Atlanta

Title: RHASW. Meaning: Reliable, Happy And Stable Worker. Desperately needed.

—Kevin Lithgow, KL Drywall, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Drywall Hanger or Drywall Finisher, and it would be six people, not one. Have been looking for several weeks and have hired 10 new ones and subcontracting to eight more last week to appease our General Contractors. 2013 could not have come soon enough!

—Jerry Reicks Jr., JARCO Builders, Sioux City, Iowa

With the passage of time and the many obstacles put in front of American business owners, I believe that the key to success lies in morale. Achieving that elusive goal of high morale seems to require the intelligence of Einstein, the mind reading abilities of Carnac the Magnificent and the ability to react as swiftly as Usain Bolt. Despite many efforts to push the right buttons with individuals and to keep morale at a high level, I am baffled by how often I push the exact opposite button and get the very response I was hoping to avoid. I have upset people by putting them on jobs that were too big or too small, too close to home or too far away, too simple or too complicated. I have also upset people by not paying enough attention to their personal crisis or by prying into their personal affairs that are “None of my business.” I have insulted people by not bonusing them enough and believe it or not, bonusing them too much. The irony is that in many cases, the same individuals have voiced their displeasure on both sides of each dilemma on different occasions.

The man whose marriage was falling apart because I always send him out of town is now telling me that he is headed for divorce unless I stop burdening him with local projects. The person who was ready to “Crack” because of the stress of larger jobs is now insulted that I don’t trust him anymore to run our larger projects…

Our next hire clearly needs to be a psychoanalyst, who can better facilitate our business decisions and advise me as to when I need to administer:

1) Disciplinary measures that coincide with our written policies in order to promote better productivity

2) Monetary “Spiffs” to elevate self-esteem and promote better productivity

3) Beatings from a hickory paddle board to intimidate and promote
better productivity

4) Hugs to give a sense of connectedness & love, while promoting better productivity.

In their free moments, the successful applicant can help to remind me what on earth I am doing in this business and show me coping mechanisms. While I am doing my deep breathing exercises, perhaps they can prepare me a green tea and hide my paddle before someone gets hurt…


Right now another foreman would be helpful. Customer relations is very important and to have another hand with someone you trust is crucial in these times.

—Jim Morton, Dickinson Drywall, West Bridgewater, MA

Estimator and Foreman. Definitely more opportunities to pursue.


Browse Similar Articles

You May Also Like

At what age are you planning to retire, and what are you doing now to prepare for retirement? For me, Retire = Slow down. My goal is to build the

I think radios onsite are permissible if the content being played is monitored both for content and for volume. Yes, if the volume is kept to a low to medium