“To be right up front, Antis does not currently have a drug policy, we are developing it as we speak,” stated Karen Inman, Antis Roofing president in an interview with RCS. “When I was hired by Charles Antis as president, my job was to grow Antis from a small roofing company to a mid-size company which involves adopting policies.” Karen was transparent for a reason. She feels there are many roofing companies that are in the same position. She wanted to share the experience through this influencers interview.
Karen continued, “We have added a human resource director, Ernie Basulto. His initial focus is on safety and risk management, which led to the development of a drug policy. He is currently doing a full audit on all human resource business practices and we are prioritizing risk. Employee hiring, onboarding, drug and safety will all be important components.”
“As part of the audit, I am determining where the largest risks lay,” stated Ernie Basulto. “One of the greater liabilities is bringing new employees into your culture. California has an overall drug-free policy but marijuana is now legal. How do we balance the two? For me it is starting with the hiring process and understanding if new prospective employees do not pass drug tests we are not going to have them continue in our hiring process. We feel one of the important first steps is being clear from the very beginning.”
Sharing company history, Charles Antis, founder of Antis Roofing, commented, “I have tried to implement drug policies in the past. Sometimes it was too harsh and other times not firm enough. Drug testing on suspicion of use was getting us in trouble. We made a conscious decision to stop looking for the bad behavior and start focusing on employee empowerment. Safety before profit, people before profit. I feel we have the best drug free environment to date and it will only get better when our new policy combines with our current culture.
Karen agreed, “Managing risk has to be consistent. If things are arbitrary your overall risk increases. We focus on process for the protection of our employees and the company - not trying to catch someone doing something wrong but staying focused on a strong culture and always following the company policy. As part of any accident we have a well check afterwards that includes a drug test. Our employees understand that this is a requirement for everyone. We are consistent every time and the employees understand it is about their safety and well-being along with protecting the company which is their livelihood. You can have a high-level sense of procedure and best practice even in a very small company.”
“Safety before profit is part of a drug free and secure jobsite” continued Ernie. We must have safe job sites where no person is under the influence of anything - drugs, alcohol, marijuana or even prescription drugs. We are training all our employees to look for signs of a person who is not feeling right or under the influence. It keeps the work place free from harm so everyone goes home safe at the end of the day. Our culture is the measuring stick for the reaction. In a bad culture, no one reports. In a good culture, employees patrol themselves, accidents happen less and when it does the culture dictates that everyone works to fix the problem to keep themselves and the company protected.
Karen summed it up by saying, “A key part in an “employee first” culture, is that leadership takes the stance that we assume the employee has done the right thing first and then we investigate to clarify the details. We have our employee’s backs. We assume innocence, not guilt, but investigate immediately to clear the air and reassure our customers and their tenants that all is good.”
Charles Antis is founder and CEO of Antis Roofing and Waterproofing. See his full bio here.