Experiencing The Island Life: CEO Recap
With all of the success Versa has seen in the St. Croix, Virgin Islands, Versa’s CEO, Clay Savoy, wanted to get a feeling for the island and to see first-hand how the day-to-day operations functioned. He was also able to sit down with some of our fantastic team members to learn the ins and outs of living the island life. Below is a quick look into Clay’s visit from the island:
“Prior to my visit to the island, I had only heard second-hand information about the island itself. Some good, some bad, but I wanted to keep an open mind and see for myself what the environment was like.
I was somewhat surprised that the island was very “go-to-work friendly,” as in the people there love the work they do and they encourage others to do the same! One thing that was most impressive to me was the superb organization on the job site. Keeping in the mind that this is a “start from scratch” project (with multiple construction companies and the customer themselves), it seemed that the logistics had been performing flawlessly with not just Versa, but the entire fluidity between all the companies was something that was logistically beautiful. With start up projects such as this one, it is very common that the site is chaotic, so it was a pleasant surprise to see it working out this way.
I was able to take some key notes away as to why our team has been so successful on the island, and it starts with our leadership:
- Our Operations Director for the region, Eddie Gonzalez, has kept the hands-on approach. Eddie hasn’t been managing this by phone or email; Eddie and his team of supervisors consistently make trips to the island to tackle challenges head-on to maintain the projects success.
- The organization of field personnel is imperative alongside critical long-term planning; knowing the logistics to better serve the end goals rather than what’s “best for the day.”
- Focus on the employees. They are away from their families and on a remote island. Focusing on making the atmosphere palatable while they are there is a high priority to make our employees feel at-home (as much as one can feel “at home” while being on a remote island).
- Consistent leadership. Our team out there has inevitably crossed some roadblocks along the way, but the “calm in the face of adversity” mentality alongside the “I got this” attitude has been a major factor in Versa’s success story.
It wasn’t all business when I visited. I was able to drag Eddie up a mountain on a dirt and gravel road on the east side of the island with two goals in mind:
- Touched a survey marker which was originally marked in 1922 – not super exciting but I’m a big history buff!
- Took a beautiful photo with a 360 degree view. This photo reminds me that we are building the industry. Even in a natural paradise, we have to respect that balance.
I would also like to give a specific shout-out to the leadership and crew down in St. Croix:
- Eddie Gonzalez, our Operations Director, consistently shows his value and leadership skills by surrounding himself with proficient leaders and fantastic crews.
- Mike Scott, our Operations Manager, has been our hands-on and go-to guy for this region. His management style and collaboration with his immediate team has been outstanding; they truly represent Versa’s core values to the best of their ability.
- I’d also like to thank Chris Snyder, Island Billy, Stephen Allen and the entire crew that took the time out of their downtime to meet with me and discuss what works and what doesn’t. This feedback helps us fully appreciate and understand what they need to succeed so we can better support them.
Overall, the trip was an astounding success as I was able to get a first-hand look at the beautiful island and was able to learn more about the wonderful team we have down there.”