An Energized Environment
ASG Electric plugs into success through safety and service
“Your great work and communication are the reason we got the job!” told Tammy Fox, Chief Operations Officer, to the electrical crew at ASG Electric after they landed a second major project with Vogel Bros. Building Co.: the expansion of the Sun Prairie Westside Community Service Building. Tammy had rushed from the office to the current job site at the Waunakee Public Library to share the good news as soon as she received the call.
Building new relationships and maintaining current ones are key to running a successful business, especially in the commercial construction industry. No one understands this better than Tammy and her husband, Chuck, both of whom founded ASG Electric in 2008.
Chuck had enjoyed his job with a local electrical contracting firm in Madison, Wisconsin. But when the owner decided to sell off the firm’s TEGG Service division, Chuck and Tammy took the plunge and purchased that division. “The electrical contractor was struggling and didn’t see a need for that part of the business,” Tammy recalls. “My husband’s job was in sales and project management for the TEGG services, so he knew what was involved in selling the services and making the business succeed.”
Highly focused on safety, Chuck believed strongly in the TEGG electrical preventive maintenance program. He knew it was a service that was essential for the industry and could be foundational to the success of their business. So, Tammy and Chuck essentially bought Chuck’s job—and in the process created ASG Electric.
Taking Risk Leads to Growth
In its early days, ASG was a specialty electrical contractor focused on electrical safety, maintenance and special testing. In addition to TEGG’s historic services, the company added arc flash risk assessment services, electrical safety training and additional specialty testing services.
As the company began offering more services, the Foxes added employees to keep up with the demand. Business expansion snowballed from there. “We needed more people because we were getting busier. Then we needed more work to keep our people busy, and the business grew into a full-service electrical contracting company,” Tammy says.
Today, ASG Electric not only continues to perform special testing but also provides a wide breadth of services, including commercial and industrial electrical system design, planning and installation.
But what makes ASG unique is it still performs those special services that no other contractor its size offers. The company’s background in safety and electrical testing has played a big role in helping build relationships with general contractors and other project partners.
When it first opened, one of ASG’s early jobs was providing TEGG electrical predictive maintenance for Ball Corporation in DeForest, Wisconsin. The success of that work led to the opportunity for ASG to perform a major revamp of Ball Corporation’s electrical system for new production lines when the latter expanded its manufacturing plant in 2014. It was a landmark project for ASG, a growing company at the time.
“This was a huge project for us based on our size back then,” Tammy says.
Since then, ASG has continued to expand and grow its services and expertise, working with general contractors in a wide range of industries, including commercial, retail, manufacturing, renewable energy and government, among others.
Any electrical contractor can run wire, but ASG enjoys interesting projects that allow the team to add a flair of creativity into the design and beauty of a building. For example, when Kahler Slater, Inc., an architectural firm in Madison, relocated, ASG’s electrical, data and fire protection work helped turn the new location into a beautiful, functional office for the company. In another office building, ASG created a unique, artificial skylight by installing LED panels with the appearance of a glass ceiling showing the sky overhead.
ASG’s dedication to quality, safety and customer service has led to many happy, repeat customers along the way, creating valuable long-term partnerships. When Royle Printing outgrew its facilities in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, and needed an additional building, ASG headed up the design and build of the electrical. Since then, Royle Printing has continued to use ASG to add additional circuits, lights and other electrical systems to accommodate its growing needs.
Building Trust and Friendship
It’s true that building relationships with clients is the backbone to any successful company. But as Tammy and Chuck have found, building meaningful relationships among their 20 employees has been just as important to ASG’s success.
Having previously worked in a corporate environment, Tammy knew when she and Chuck founded ASG that company culture and those personal relationships would be an important focus.
“I wanted something personal, where people aren’t numbers, where they’re an extended part of our family,” Tammy explains.
True to Tammy’s vision, the culture at ASG places a strong emphasis on family. She and Chuck make it a point to not only personally get to know each employee, but to get to know their families, too.
At the end of the day, Tammy says, “People work to support their families. We understand that family is the most important thing in their life—that’s why they’re here. But we also want them to enjoy their work.”
For Tammy, it’s also important that ASG has a supportive atmosphere that allows all team members to develop personal connections so they feel comfortable reaching out to one another for help.
For instance, if one employee on a job site runs into an issue and is struggling to resolve, it, that individual will call a co-worker on another site who can offer support and another perspective. “It’s that support and comradery that helps us create a great team,” Tammy says. “They’ve built trust and they have each other’s backs. Nobody can be an expert at everything, so for them to know they have a support group like ours is important.”
‘Safety. It’s What We Sell.’
In addition to providing a team-centric atmosphere, there are three key areas that guide ASG Electric’s culture: communication, quality and—of course—safety.
It makes sense that a company whose beginnings were rooted in safety testing would highly value safety. As Tammy points out, “Safety is what we sell.”
She believes that ASG team members have developed great communication and interpersonal skills—not only by being able to communicate well with one another as colleagues, but also with customers.
It’s these “soft skills” that Chuck and Tammy encourage. They know that communication can make or break a good project or a client relationship.
“We look for electrical skillsets in the people we hire, but even more so we look very carefully at other skills, such as a desire to work safely and to be part of a team,” Tammy shares, adding, “Our team members take pride in the quality of their work. Our people communicate well with customers and amongst themselves. They focus on building each other up as a team.”
Ongoing professional development is also embedded into the culture, with ASG employees encouraged to complete at least 20 hours of continuing education every year. To compare, Tammy points out that the state of Wisconsin only requires 24 hours every four years for electricians to renew their licenses.
“Our employees have a drive to grow themselves professionally, and we strongly encourage that,” she says.
Our Best Salesmen
The future of ASG Electric is bright. The Waunakee Public Library was the company’s largest project yet. The attractive new building is an impressive landmark for the town.
ASG Electric was hired by Vogel Bros. Building Co. to complete the electrical work from beginning to end, including switchgear installation, interior lighting, outdoor lighting, data systems and fire protection—and, as it turns out, this project was only the beginning of a new relationship.
As Tammy shared the exciting news with the crew that they’d secured the Sun Prairie Westside Community Service Building expansion, the team was proud to know their contributions had made a difference in ASG Electric’s success. After all, as Tammy points out, “Everyone has heard me say, ‘our electricians are our salesmen’...and it’s true! When a customer sees our work and talks to our electricians, if they’re looking for quality work at a good price, they’re definitely going to call us again for the next project.”