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Business Consultant
Media, Investigative Journalism, Business Consultant
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As the smell of freshly ground Sumatra Mandling permeated and the morning fog in my head I listened as the morning breeze gently rustled the leaves of the Aspens in Laci’s Rose garden bringing the oh so slight teasing promise of rain, I couldn’t help wonder what new adventure this crazy industry I work in will bring.
After all in the past month our beloved Property Preservation industry has had so many insane “new” mandated requirements from being ordered to place tracking software on personal cell phones to being told should one decide to send a text message about a job to an employee they may face possible prosecution for revealing “trade secrets” in over the top egregious contract clauses. Now call me a conspiracy theorist but to me at least, that is just a little over the top for a company to mandate any Independent Contractor do all in the name of attempting “Image Repair”. In addition to all the “harmless new mandated requirements” that demonstrate “direction and control” that the Independent Contractors have just accept as part of the business because they are so afraid of waking up and having to find a new line of work if they say no, we have had a barrage of media press that many feel has bashed the Contractors and given ALL of them a “bad name” and shown them in a bad light.
So While I was enjoy the acidic sweet smell of my morning coffee filling my nostrils and jarring the brainwaves into motion the little man running around the canyons of my mind started screaming questions, these questions started echoing through the canyons of my mind. How come no one has spoken for the Contractors? How come the Contractors are not screaming? Where are these organizations that claim to represent everyone in the Property Preservation Industry? Why haven’t these organizations put a stop to some of this madness??
Could it be that the organizations that claim to be part of the solution are actually part of the problem? Is it possible that said organizations have helped create some of the policies that have recently been mandated? So many questions ….so many questions.
• What has puzzled me the most is that when opportunities for the Independent Contractors to make a stand come, very few are willing to join forces, if you will, and make a statement by representing themselves. A recent article in the Huffington Post (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/29/safeguard-properties-complaints_n_3165191.html) is a prime example of what I’m talking about. Here the vendors that have organized on sites like LinkedIn(National Property Preservation Guild Group, 225 members), Facebook, (Property Preservation Company's Information Exchange, 433 members), Preservation Talk.com with 1,476 members. Over two thousand members and how many of them commented on behalf of the Contractors or even represented their company in the comment section after this article that so many claimed “It makes us look bad”… You can count the number on one hand.
• I find that rather pathetic. Not only have many Contractors in the industry expressed to me how they feel this article has shined a very negative light on the Contractors of the industry, but so did the folks commenting on the article. Let them tell it we are all a bunch of scoundrels that should be run out of town and tarred and feathered!!!
• One would think with the obnoxious amount of complaining that runs through the afore mentioned sites on a daily bases that the Contractors would be screaming ENOUGH!!!!!!!!!!!!! STOP ALREADY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!… But we don’t even hear a whisper from them? Why? What has them so terrified to come together? Why are they afraid to show the other side a united front can be made by them? A united front in order to improve the conditions of the Property Preservation Industry?
• When this thought came screaming through those same canyons of my mind the little man running around up there froze….then he asked me…Do you think that these Contractors are aware that there was a time when there was a mass of overworked underpaid, physically and mentally abused, often beaten into submission, threatened at gunpoint, with some even losing their lives (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homestead_Strike), Behind the actions of Carnegie? Do you think the Contractors know this, the little man asked? Do you think they even understand that by not saying anything on their behalf they are in fact endorsing everything done and said?
• Then the little man started to walk away and suddenly stopped and asked… Do you think the Contractors understand the impact that John D. Rockefeller (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standard_Oil) had on reinforcing the Sherman Antitrust Act….
• Do you think the Contractors understand that those before them, just like those that have died in wars, will have fought for principle all for naught should they continue on this road of silence? Now the little man was shaking his head….so many questions he mumbled….
• As the little man started to skip off into the recesses of my mind he paused for a second and over his shoulder he said…Perhaps you should ask them….
 

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I gotta get me some of what your drinking! :drink:

Seriously though, I agree with your post 100%, and feel that I for one need to make more of an effort to stand up for and stand with the professional contractors in this industry.

Very good post. Thank you.
 
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