The great benefit of being actively involved is that you can control your own destiny. You do not need others to speak for you, you can do it in a professional manner and achieve the outcome for the greater good of the people you serve day in and day out.
By John Paglia, III

Anything that runs smoothly in our industry from an outsider’s perspective, I can assure you is not by accident. Rather, at the very root of the success is a great line of communication from those that developed the specific plan, to those that are carrying out the function. This can be true for the smallest and largest task, improper or lack of communication will always end in failure. Having an open line of communication in your community you serve is the first step of being a good steward for your environment. I recommend being involved in your community for the right reasons, not just for when you may need a favor. By being active in your community, you will earn the trust of elected officials, customers, as well as people of the community since they know that you are involved for more than just a financial gain.

Be Transparent
Being involved actively is not an easy task. It can become very time consuming. It is worth all the effort because if the communication is not relayed properly, the original intent and goal of a message will be misconstrued. You, your company, and its representatives can then lose credibility if a rumor starts to gain traction and you are not involved to address the facts in the beginning. Often when contacted by a public official for an opinion on a waste or recycling related matter, we will encourage them to seek out the opinions of the other haulers in the county as well. Being transparent only increases the trust factor, which in return creates a successful outcome for all individuals affected by a decision.

Educate the Public and Officials
Public education never stops. Like I alluded to already, a misinformed message due to a lack of communication is bad for everyone. There is nothing worse than seeing someone passionately defend something they know nothing about. No one knows your business and the waste industry better than yourselves. If you care about something enough to speak on it publicly, invite officials to tour your facility so they can see first hand the amount of organization and communication involved to make waste and recycling disappear from the streets. They will come away with a better understanding which in return will help them make educated decisions that will benefit everyone under the blanket of their decision making.

Develop Relationships
For the educational process to be effective the communication must be active. People change occupations, the markets for waste and recycling change, so having a clear line of communication with decision makers is always key to ensuring your message is heard correctly. Developing relationships with in-coming decision makers is just as important as maintaining existing ones. In a world where everyone has the ability to obtain information with a few key strokes into Google, it is important your message can be fact checked. The great benefit of being actively involved is that you can control your own destiny. You do not need others to speak for you; you can do it in a professional manner and achieve the outcome for the greater good of the people you serve day in and day out. | 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 John3@floridaexpress.us or visit www.floridaexpress.us.

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