Build your team at a pace you can control, understanding that growth will not happen overnight. If you are patient and strategic, things will fall into place.
By John Paglia III

Building a team is one of the greatest reasons a company can succeed. The leader of the business can have the vision, but the vision will not go anywhere if a team is not formed and created. Having a culture that is committed to success is also vital, but defining success can be comprehensive. Putting everything together with an efficient communication chain will ensure the message and direction from leaders is clearly conveyed to all members of the company. It will encourage others to join your team as you will establish trust. The message that is sold to new team members is only valuable if everything sold is fact upon their arrival. Credibility and experience come into play, as no one wants to join a losing team.

It is no secret that Florida Express Environmental, backed by management that has three generations of waste experience from being largely private and even publicly traded in our history, has a strategic aggressive growth plan in our future. I have been involved directly with putting these pieces together, and I can assure you it is rewarding and exciting at the same time when a deal comes together. I have recently hired some new management that will join our team in the coming weeks. The first step will be to get them acclimated to our culture and systems in place. At the same time, I have started to put together a short list of private business owners with similar visions to mine. It is my hope that one day, they will want to be part of a much larger organization that they can contribute to in an industry they also have a passion for. I am not a big believer in hierarchy with titles. Team members must be team players. I want those joining our company, either organically or through acquisition, to be put in the best possible position to succeed for themselves personally, which in return will spread into their confidence to perform at work.

About seven years ago, I started a “Motivational Monday” e-mail that is sent to all members of the company and I also printed and handed it out to those without an e-mail. I use these messages to communicate within the company and keep our family informed with the company’s vision and direction. The response I get and improvement I see in our employees since I started this is contagious. My last message prior to writing this article was as followed:

Good Morning All,
I hope everyone had a great weekend. One time while I was in a challenging position, my Dad compared it to the growth of the tree in hopes for me to realize what I was going through was ok and that what I was experiencing is normal in the ladder of success. I will define his mentoring moment as:
The Tree (Our Lives / Company)

“Over time, as a tree grows, weak branches blow off, fall off or just never reach their full potential. The tree continues to grow even though the weak branches fall off. Sometimes the tree must get rid of the weak branches so the new growth can shine through”. -John Paglia, Jr.

Our work and personal lives can be related to the growth of the tree. Weaker branches have fallen off, but only to be replaced with new supportive ones that add to future growth and beauty of Florida Express. Our company tree continues to grow. We have an awesome foundation set up, let’s continue to make it stronger as our branches and limbs extend into new places, but never forgetting what type of tree we are and where we started from with 1 seed aka 1 truck! I’m proud of our tree and the team. Remember to focus daily to improve. I’m very proud of our team.

Let’s have a great safe week!

This is a short example of a way I encourage communication from the top to bottom, no matter how large or small your company is. In order to be successful, we all look to leaders or mentors. I have been blessed with many great leaders in my lifetime and I always try to share these words of wisdom when and where I can. Build your team at a pace you can control, understanding that growth will not happen overnight. If you are patient and strategic, things will fall into place. You will soon see branches turn into limbs that will then spin off branches of their own. Without a solid foundation, the tree will be useless. Stay true to your roots! | WA

John Paglia III is a 4th generation garbage man. Before he climbed the ranks to become Florida Express Environmental’s General Manager, he had a successful career in college and professional athletics. John has been around the garbage industry since his car seat days. Currently, John is focused on growing his company and offering the highest level of customer service and prolonging the world we live in today. John wakes up every day knowing the impact professional haulers have on their community is far greater than most realize. He can be reached at (352) 629-4349, e-mail [email protected] or visit