IVGID GM’s Corner: Celebrating our wonderful employees | SierraSun.com

IVGID GM’s Corner: Celebrating our wonderful employees

Steve Pinkerton
Special to the Bonanza
Steve Pinkerton

Several months ago, I wrote a column about Gung Ho!, the culture alignment training that all our full-time employees went through earlier this year.

As I noted at the time, culture training focuses on helping your workforce align its purpose, values and goals. It emphasizes frontline, not top-down, decision-making responsibility, and celebrating workforce successes, no matter how small.

Its principles are general enough to respond to various organizational needs and adjust with the ever-changing demands of today’s workplace.

The main goals of the process are to:

Improve employee morale and productivity,

Reduce employee turnover,

Develop a sense of purpose at personal and corporate level,

Improve service to internal and external customers; and

Empower individuals and teams.

Gung Ho! has three central principles:

1. Doing worthwhile work driven by the goals and values defined by the workforce.

2. Putting your workers in control of achieving their goals.

3. Cheering each other on.

That last principle — cheering each other on — is an area where all of our staff felt we could improve. To that end, we’ve created a “Gung Ho! Moments” page on our organization’s intranet.

Each week, we highlight instances where an employee has gone above and beyond the call of duty or had a special achievement.

Here are some of the “Gung Ho! Moments” we’ve recently celebrated:

Moment No. 1

During normal operations at the treatment plant on Friday, March 27, a large effluent (wastewater) pipe burst inside the operators lab building literally creating a wastewater geyser that proceeded to rain down on Tim Bauer.

Despite the obvious feelings to run far away fast, Tim remained while being drenched in wastewater to save some vital equipment and the data sheets that he had been working on in the lab.

All of the operators that were at the plant immediately stopped what they were doing and literally ran towards the wastewater geyser and waded through the many inches of deep wastewater that were filling the room to get the leak under control and start clean-up.

Once the leak was under control the pipeline department responded to help repair the pipe and the compliance department helped with the backflow considerations.

Tim Bauer was even nice enough to make copies of the slightly wet paperwork before distributing it. Everything appeared to be done with a positive helpful Gung Ho attitude and it was impressive to observe.

Moment No. 2

Alexander Cravallo’s keys were in his house and the door was locked. He didn’t want to be late for work so he knocked the door handle off and broke the lock.

As he was riding up the lift, he shared his story with the gentleman sitting next to him. That happened to be Brad Wilson, our Ski Manager. who thanked him for his dedication to making it to work on time.

Moment No. 3

We would like to congratulate the Child Ski Center’s Lauren Iida on passing her Children’s Specialist Level 2 Accreditation this past week at Mammoth Mountain. Lauren took it upon herself to pay for this event, study and train on her own and was successful in her efforts.

This accreditation is PSIA highest for child ski educators and will be a great stepping stone for her achieving a level 3 certification. The Child Ski Center staff and our customers will be affected in a very positive manner due to her accomplishments.

Moment No. 4

Back in January it was brought to our attention that the District’s collection site for household hazardous waste (HW) could no longer be used for collecting HW generated by District venues, so we went to the experts to see what could be done to mitigate the problem.

Sarah Vidra and Madonna Dunbar made all the arrangements to make sure we were in compliance for all the challenges that were required, they set up a meeting with a representative from the NDEP (Nevada Div. of Environmental Protection) just to verify we had all the correct information and then the process steamrolled ahead.

The District was the generous recipient of a grant from Pool/Pact which helped offset the cost of this project as well. Thanks to following for all their help: Gerry Eick for walking us through the grant application process; the Pipeline guys, Scott Hubele and Chris Orton, for moving the container to its new permanent home; Justin Bluhm and Brett Courtney for installing the ventilation fan (when it gets here); and Sarah Vidra ordered all the critical safety equipment that was required enabling us to be ready to accept Hazardous Waste from your facilities in the next couple of weeks.

This project is a great example of all three Gung-Ho principles at work.

“GM’s Corner” is a twice-monthly column from Incline Village General Improvement Distinct General Manager Steve Pinkerton, who will discuss issues and offer updates regarding various district matters.