I admit to several pet peeves. Some of them include idle chit-chat, incessant whining, sitting on a plane next to a person with a hands-free cell phone who makes his personal business everyone’s business, and listening to people who seemed so relieved to see the workweek come to an end.

When was the last time you heard, “Thank God it’s Monday,” or “Is it Friday already? How disappointing!”

Of course, there are weeks that I’m glad to see Friday, but I don’t make a habit of putting that day on a pedestal above all others.

Not Enough Days in the Week

If you consider the hours and days that people in the hvacr trade work, it’s a wonder that T.G.I.F. isn’t replaced with T.G.I.S. — where the “S” stands for Saturday or Sunday. After all, Saturday work is a staple in our trade, and emergency calls on Sundays are not uncommon, either. In fact, maybe we should add an eighth day — Someday — to handle the spillover.

We should come up with a new acronym, like T.G.J.C.C.H. (Thank God the job is complete and the customer is happy). Rather than struggle to see the weekend, our “struggle,” if you will, is often to see the successful completion of a job, no matter what day of the week it is.

I take issue with people who think it is more important to make it to the weekend than it is to work diligently and smartly throughout the week. If a person plans his or her schedule and sticks with it, that should be cause to celebrate.

I’ve talked with many contractors and their workers about work schedules and planning. For the most part, business people would like to satisfy their customers within a 40-hour, five-day workweek. But let’s get real. During peak busy times, it is tough to follow a standard schedule. Your customers need you when there is no heat or a/c, or when the building controls show a problem in one of the circuits, or an act of God has flooded out a basement.

Getting the Job Done

Our business doesn’t know standard schedules. Our customers are grateful for that. And that’s why I get steamed when so many people in other businesses are so grateful when their 40-hour week comes to a close at 4:30 p.m. Friday.

Some people understand what it’s like to work six and seven days a week. I am one of the “lucky” people who telecommute — the new buzzword for “working at home.” But I’m not so sure lucky is always the correct adjective.

I find myself in my office seven days a week, sometimes at very odd hours, writing stories, searching for stories, answering and writing e-mails, booking travel, etc. My wife thinks I spend way too much time in “The Swamp.”

But I get a feel for what contractors go through, too. I haven’t met any who subscribe to the T.G.I.F. theory. They’re almost always too busy, working in their offices or on the jobsite at all hours and days of the week. It seems the ones who are able to maintain a semi-normal schedule only do so by accident.

So it’s cheers for the T.G.J.C.C.H. crowd and jeers to the T.G.I.F.’ers. But don’t misunderstand; I hold no grudges against people who can fit all of their work into a 40-hour week. I admire them.

Now, can someone tell me what day of the week it is?

Hall is business management editor. He can be reached at 734-542-6214; 734-542-6215 (fax); halljr@bnp.com (e-mail).

Publication date: 07/30/2001