A Shining Example
G&J Paving’s sense of purpose, integrity and family guide its ‘hot’ growth
We’ve all seen those ugly old trucks pulling equipment encrusted with tar from months or even years of paving jobs. So why does G&J Paving, Inc. (G&J) keep their equipment and trucks so shiny? President and CEO Chad Jordan believes it’s akin to Admiral William H. McRaven’s advice to start a successful day by making your bed.
Paying attention to every detail helped Chad build G&J from a small operation with only two employees and two pieces of equipment, to 20 employees and 40 pieces of equipment—all in barely 20 years. However, growing a company so quickly requires much more than attention to detail—it requires an idea man.
Becoming the Best in Southern Ohio
With competition from much larger paving companies, Chad knew that he had to be not only the best, but also different if he wanted to grow his business in the foothills of Appalachia. He relied on the exceptional business skills of his wife, Tara, to run the office, and he mapped out a plan for projects and procedures that would guide G&J’s growth well into the future.
Because larger and older businesses had dotted the horizon and served the needs of Southern Ohio for years, Chad decided on three principles: be the best, offer the greatest number of options for customers, and make customer and employee loyalty a priority.
To become the best, Chad decided the way to be on top of a job is to be on the job. Thankfully, if he didn’t get back to the office until nightfall, Tara could easily take care of all the business needs and keep Chad informed of any aspects that required his attention. So, every morning, Chad goes from jobsite to jobsite. He’s there for his crews and there to discover any imperfections in G&J jobs. Except…there are very few to address.
Once, during a post-completion inspection of a 30,000-square-foot parking lot, Chad’s examination revealed a shallow dip that may not have completely drained water. Within hours, equipment and a crew were back on the site to repave
Options for Southern Ohio Customers
The issue of repaving during the winter presented Chad with the opportunity to offer a particular service none of his competitors could provide. Normally found only in the largest of cities, Chad’s new infrared paver warms existing blacktop. “Now, customers are able to hire G&J to repair potholes and install permanent pavement, avoiding temporary fixes that our competitors have to re-fix with a permanent solution once the weather warms.” Chad says. “And of course, we can pull hot asphalt from our own plant and keep our customers from having to pay twice for the same problem.”
An asphalt plant. A gravel plant. A milling operation. An excavation crew. G&J draws upon a full range of resources to make life easier for customers—whether they need pothole repairs or multimillion-dollar new installations.
One will find the latest innovations in quality and efficiency on the G&J yard—from a shiny infrared paver or a bulldozer and a place to crush concrete or sort gravel to a carefully managed excavation. G&J is eager to provide one-stop shopping on a scale and level of excellence most often associated with big-city operations.
Loyalty is Good Business
Chad’s mission involves more than growing a business, however.
As with many organizations, he understands that “customer loyalty is good business.” Making customers happy enough to turn to G&J throughout the decades is a given for Chad and Tara. But few know the extent to which they go to earn employee loyalty.
For example, they provide company outings, such as barbecues and fishing trips, to encourage teamwork and give employees a sense of family. “Part of providing excellent services and products depends on providing excellent working circumstances for crews and office personnel,” Chad says. “That means sticking to the philosophy of providing a home environment. We share the holidays together, go deer hunting on our farm, and make sure everyone sees their family every night.”
Chad and Tara also go much, much, further than this to support their employees and their community.
A Giving Spirit
G&J contributes to its local community in a variety of ways. Chad and Tara make donations to public schools—including those their own children do not attend. G&J also sponsors and coaches Little League teams and takes care of baseball diamonds. You have to pry answers about everything else they do from Chad’s brother, Mike Jordan. “When a local family lost their home to a fire, Chad was there to help rebuild it,” Mike says. “When boys and girls want to go on summer trips, Chad and Tara pay for hotels and other expenses.”
When it’s time for a 4-H fair, Chad and Tara are there to buy the auctioned animals raised not only by their own children, but to buy all the animals of all their employees’ children and grandchildren. Amazingly, Chad and Tara don’t collect the animals.
“For large animals ready for the stockyards, all monies go back to the children. Smaller animals become pets or livestock on employees’ farms. Steers, goats, rabbits and chickens benefit only the families of employees. And it’s all done anonymously,” says Mike. For children who want to keep their animals but don’t have the facilities, they can keep them on the Jordans’ farm.
When you see a caravan of G&J’s red Kenworth trucks and equipment driving down the road, these shiny examples are but a clue to the behind-the-scenes excellence fostered by Chad and Tara. Their sense of purpose, integrity and family guide them to provide excellent products and services to customers…just like family.