Happy Roofers

On the day I am writing this post, David’s and my roof is in the third day of being removed, in preparation for a new roof to be installed. Although we have been through this process in the past, in 2005, when we lost the roof on our previous house during Hurricane Wilma, our current home has a massive roof that is a complex design and contains several steep pyramid structures. Several roofing companies’ owners declined to do the work, others were too expensive, and others failed to assure me that they were qualified for the job. The roofing company I hired is a large
corporation that has an assembly line approach to its work. The men who are tearing off the old roof will move on to another house after they finish ours, then we will have 2 other crews for the remaining work. All of this information is the foundation for this post, which is about happy roofers. There have been 12 men working on David’s and my roof for the past 3 days. They work from 7:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m., which is a long day regardless of the type of work one performs, and brutally long for the hard work of a roofer. I have been impressed by all of the roofers’ work ethic, professionalism, and commitment to cleaning up the work site daily. But I have been surprised, even shocked, to see the huge smiles on the roofers’ faces when they are performing their job. Not only do they smile and laugh while working, they tell me they love their job and they thank me for letting them work on my roof! At the end of their long work day, they display boundless energy that many people lack while doing their easy desk jobs. While cleaning up every evening, the roofers sing, cheer each other, and laugh at me as I dance for joy in celebration of my good fortune in having such great people work on the roof. I exclaim “Que’ lindo!” every evening when I see the day’s progress then I think about how wonderful it is to see people who are happy doing their work. Hooray for happy roofers!

This whole re-roofing process has been an experience. The happy roofers part makes some of it into a positive one. I’ve never seen anything like it. The energy of these guys after 12 hours in the hot sun, on a roof, is inspiring. The work is incredibly hard. The materials are heavy, and what we observed was very surprising. Guys running with a heavily loaded wheelbarrow, through the yard, into the trash trailer. Groups of 6 to 8 of the workers running with a tarp laden with hundreds of pounds of ceramic tile debris while cheering and laughing. No missteps, no falls, no tripping – on uneven terrain- obviously, this is routine for them. We’ve taken steps to try to communicate with them although there is a language barrier for me. And, we’ve provided some refreshments which have been much appreciated! They are effusive in thanking me for those things, bowing and smiling. The boss says they love to work, they love the job and they enjoy working together. I’ve never seen such team work! I wouldn’t last on that team for a half hour if Melissa would even let me climb the ladder to the roof! The positive impression they are making reflects well on the roofing company. I can easily imagine hot, tired, surly roofers, but these guys are so far on the other end of the spectrum that it is stunning. Happy roofers make for happy customers! If only all businesses were as fortunate to have such excited employees, the world would be a better place!


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