All of my days here at Williams Company are good days. When it comes to great days, these come in different varieties. At the top of the great day list are the ones that a client sincerely, and deliberately tells me that our team is doing an awesome job for them! These are my best days here at Williams Company!
And so it was last Friday at Sickles High School in Hillsborough County. The Superintendent of Hillsborough County Public Schools, Jeff Eakins, was at Sickles High School to speak to the media about the state of the school district as we begin the 2019-20 year. All of the local television stations were there along with reporters from the Tampa Bay Times (the best newspaper in Florida).
Superintendent Eakins brought Luke and Mark up to thank them, and also allowed them to speak about the importance of this project to our company. The Principal and Assistant Principal also praised our team for our incredible progress. Everyone was thrilled with the work we have completed!
Superintendent Eakins had at least 15 different schools he could have presented from, but he picked Sickles. Why? ... because out of all the school work in Hillsborough County that has come from the half penny sales tax referendum passed last November, our school project has come the furthest!
This did not happen by accident. Dirk, Tony, Luke, Mark, Nolan, Bill and Melanie worked their tails off on the front end of this very aggressive schedule. The team has been working 7 days a week, around the clock this summer. Early on they worked closely with the design team to get information about the long lead items. They used multiple subs on some trades, and most importantly they were able to get the chiller ordered, delivered and installed over the summer!
The event last Friday was a public relations homerun for the Williams Company!
Great job and well deserved praise for Team Tampa!
We have a team working on our 100th Anniversary Gala next March, and so we have been looking at old documents and newspaper articles about our company. In an article dated July 25, 1971, an Orlando Sentinel reporter describes how the company was founded in 1920. He goes on to say that J.J. Williams founded the company on three simple principles. He called them the rules of building.
1. Outstanding appearance
2. Proper function
3. Superior quality
Before the 1960's, Williams Company (known as Williams Development Company then) was primarily a home builder and built new houses in many areas of the growing City of Orlando. The article quotes Ralph Williams (J.J.'s son), "it means that our customers are not only satisfied, but proud and confident they have received full value for their investment. The best proof of this is the large number of repeat customers we have". The article stated that Williams Development Company repeat customer number at the time was 60%. Repeat business now stands at 90%!
From our humble beginnings 100 years ago, many things haven't changed. Our clients recognize a properly built building, which have an outstanding appearance, and are of the highest quality!
Our company was built on a strong foundation almost 100 years ago now. J.J. Williams would be so proud of all of you and what you have accomplished with the company that bears his name!
What is the American Dream? I believe most of us here at the Williams Company are living that dream!
So what is the American dream? I found this definition at Investopedia:
The American Dream is the belief that anyone, regardless of where they were born or what class they were born into, can attain their own version of success in a society where upward mobility is possible for everyone. The American Dream is achieved through sacrifice, risk-taking, and hard work, rather than by chance.
So there is talk in the press that the American Dream is dead. Don't believe it! I see too many of you at Williams Company that have made many sacrifices, taken risk, worked incredibly hard and yes, are living the American Dream!
So for me personally, I have a few more items that I believe are part of the American Dream.
Owning your own home (and having it paid off before retirement)
Owning part of a company (as you all do)
Being able to provide adequately for your family
The ability to create wealth and be debt free
The opportunity to pursue your goals, passion and hobbies
Pursuing your American Dream is not easy, nor should it be. It takes dedication and a lot of will power. The American Dream should never be taken for granted, and none of us are simply entitled to it. The opportunity to even pursue the items listed above should be cherished and valued. Most people of the world have zero opportunities to pursue any of this.
Most of us here at Williams Company have come from humble beginnings. Many of you have started your careers with nothing in the bank, including me. But I have witnessed with hard work, a desire to continually learn, a passion for service and excellence, and a dedication to our team, you will experience the American Dream right here at Williams Company!