Monday Message 4/27/2020

Dear All –

It has been at least a month or more since I wrote about running… ☺

Last night, I ran some of Hard Guy trail, a tough Boise foothills trail with relentless vertical.

Afterwards, I noticed was there was no connection between my enjoyment of the trail with its views and water-crossings and the challenge of the steep trail. I could have challenge and still enjoy what I was doing.  

I enjoy watching a professional take on a challenge – the type that says – stand back – I’ve got this (and I want it!).  I want that to be my attitude.  Only for us, I would say – let’s come together and then everyone go get this.      

That said, challenges feel much better when we have sleep, our body is fueled, and our mind is clear.

Please take care of yourself!

Communication Updates

As we discussed, we will slow down some of our communication efforts.  .

– Watercooler on Tuesday as previous. No speaker this week.     

– Townhall isn’t currently scheduled until the end of May unless something comes up

– Sloansg.com/updates is still being updated. 

Please make sure to remain vigilant with checking temperatures!

Caught My Eye

Tantau Entry Gate Arms by Sean Sonderman (entering the Battleship Galactica)… 

Inspired

“Life is 10% what happens to me, and 90% how I react to it.” – Charles Swindoll

Have a great and safe week! 

Brice 

Brice Sloan

CEO & Co-Founder               

Sloan Security Group, Inc.

Town Hall 4/23/2020

Welcome everyone! We hope that you and your families are staying safe. We appreciate you revisiting our Town Hall and hope that you enjoy.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3 (End)

Weekly Message 4/20/2020

Dear all – 

It was a tough decision to have the Boise office go to a remote work status and furlough some of the fab team.  At that time, I hadn’t realized that re-opening the office would be an equally tough decision. 

The current game plan is starting April 27th to do a soft return to the Boise office, starting with our HR department and followed by our Finance team.  This plan is subject to change based on CDC and State guidelines.  We will communicate future return schedules as we can.  Any return plan will be discussed in advance with staff.      

Watercooler

The optional watercooler is Tuesday @ 4:30pm. This week, I thought I would share my bookshelves and discuss some books that have impacted me. 

Workout Challenge

Craig Jasmer is trying to do one hundred burpees a day. I did six in my office on Friday and I am trying for ten today.  You have to start somewhere…. 

Tiktok Video

You demanded a Sloan Tiktok video.  We heard you and here it is on YouTube…. (No, I am not dancing in this one.) ☺

Caught My Eye 

As we head into summer, the Sioux Falls NOSC Team brought cold and snow to Sioux Falls…

Loops

My mind often works in loops. 

This weekend, I used some of the time, to clean out my girls’ old school papers and look at old photos.  As Emma heads next to college, this time of housecleaning is bittersweet, but I use the past to appreciate the present and prepare for the future.    

When we first went into this crisis, we had discussed four themes that would enable us to navigate the crisis:

– safety (particularly employee, community and customer)

– create value, often remotely

– communicate frequently and often

– and preserve cash

To this, I would add – stay with our SCIIP values (safety, collaboration, integrity, innovation and professionalism). 

So far, I am proud that we so far have managed to succeed in this.  I have no doubt there will be more challenges ahead with opening back up the office, but by keeping to our values and our themes, we will succeed in navigating these complex challenges. 

Be safe and have a great day!

I am grateful for each one of you.

Brice

Brice Sloan

CEO & Co-Founder               

Sloan Security Group, Inc.

Town Hall 4/16/2020

Good morning everyone! Here is the Town Hall for the week, there is a special treat at the end with a Sloan Quarantine TikTok.

If you are unable to view the video below click here to watch the recording of our meeting.

Special thanks to Emma Sloan for keeping us up to date with the trends (TikTok).

Weekly Message 4/13/2020

Dear all – 

Yesterday after spending several hours researching economic recovery models (still uncertain), I loved this quote from David Whyte that encouraged us “to use this time to re-imagine our horizons.” 


It is my belief that thanks to everyone’s hard work, we will come out of this stronger as a team than we went into this crisis.  If crisis reveals character, I am proud of what it is revealing. 

This is also the time to listen intently to our customers as how we serve our customers will likely change over the coming years.  I would love to hear your thoughts on this.       

New Project Win

We received notice that we are the apparent low on the King County (WA) Security Upgrades Airport Project.  We have also added a new Washington address to our office list.  Thank you – Craig!

Home Office Safety 
I wanted to share some home office ergonomic suggestion from my friend and designer Eric Shaver, Ph.D.  He is 6’8” so home offices are a challenge for him.

Watercooler

The optional watercooler is today (Tuesday) @ 4:30pm. This week we will feature former Navy Seal Anthony Baker (and one of our advisors).  He will share his story as well as take questions.  

More animal pictures

Here is Apollo (Michaela’s new co-worker)

Caught My Eye (Too low)

From our Dallas Ft Worth projects – our gate arm needs 30’ of clearance, but the bridge is at 18’.  Raise the bridge? ☺

Remember

Patty reminded me that we can also control our attitude.  I found myself short-tempered this weekend as so many things are uncertain – including how we celebrate my daughter Emma’s 18th birthday today. 🥳

Be safe and have a great day!

I am grateful for each one of you.

Brice

Brice Sloan

CEO & Co-Founder               

Sloan Security Group, Inc.

Communicable or Infectious Disease Control Policy

Sloan Security Group (or SSG) and subsidiaries will take proactive steps to protect the workplace in the event of an infectious disease outbreak. It is the goal of Sloan Security Group during any such time period to strive to operate effectively and ensure that all essential services are continuously provided and that employees are safe within the workplace.

Sloan Security Group (SSG) is committed to providing authoritative information about the nature and spread of infectious diseases, including symptoms and signs to watch for, as well as required steps to be taken in the event of an illness or outbreak in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guidelines and the World Health Organization if applicable.

What is a Communicable or Infectious Disease?

A communicable or infectious disease is a disease that can be transmitted from one individual to another via: 1) direct physical contact, 2) the air (cough, sneeze or particle inhaled), 3) through a transmission vehicle (either ingested or injected) or 4) through a vector (animals or insects). Examples of some of the most common communicable or infectious diseases include: measles, influenza, viral hepatitis-A (infectious hepatitis), viral hepatitis-B (serum hepatitis), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), AIDS, AIDS-Related Complex (ARC), leprosy, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and tuberculosis (TB). This definition may be broadened in accordance with the recommendations and information provided from the CDC.

SSG will make decisions involving those with communicable or infectious diseases based on medical information concerning the disease in question, the risks of transmission to others, symptoms and any special circumstances of the individuals involved. The company will weigh potential risks and available alternatives before making any decisions.

Preventing the Spread of Infection in the Workplace

SSG will ensure a clean workplace, including the regular cleaning of objects and areas that are frequently used, such as bathrooms, break rooms, conference rooms, door handles and railings. A committee will be designated to monitor and coordinate events around an infectious disease outbreak, as well as to create work rules that could be implemented to promote safety through infection control.

We ask all employees to cooperate in taking steps to reduce the transmission of infectious disease in the workplace. The best strategy remains the most obvious—frequent hand washing with warm, soapy water; covering your mouth whenever you sneeze or cough; and discarding used tissues in wastebaskets. We will also provide alcohol-based hand sanitizers throughout the workplace and in common worksite areas.

Individuals who believe they may face particular challenges reporting to work during an infectious disease outbreak should take steps to develop any necessary contingency plans. For example, employees might want to arrange for alternative sources of childcare should schools close and/or speak with supervisors about the potential to work from home temporarily or on an alternative work schedule.

Limiting Travel

All nonessential travel should be avoided until further notice. Employees who travel as an essential part of their job should consult with management on appropriate actions. Business-related travel outside the United States will not be authorized until further notice.

Employees should avoid crowded public transportation when possible.

Telecommuting

Telework requests will be handled on a case-by-case basis. While not all positions will be eligible, all requests for temporary telecommuting should be submitted to your manager for consideration.

Staying Home When Ill 

Many times, with the best of intentions, employees report to work even though they feel ill. We provide paid sick time and other benefits to compensate employees who are unable to work due to illness. Please see the employee handbook; section 6.1 – 6.4 regarding these benefits.

During an infectious disease outbreak, it is critical that employees do not report to work while they are ill and/or experiencing the following symptoms: fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Currently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people with an infectious illness (such as the flu as an example) remain at home until at least 24 hours after they are free of fever (100 degrees F or 37.8 degrees C) or signs of a fever without the use of fever-reducing medications. Employees who report to work ill will be sent home in accordance with these health guidelines.

Requests for Medical Information and/or Documentation 

If you are out sick or show symptoms of being ill, it may become necessary to request information from you and/or your health care provider. In general, we would request medical information to show whether and how an absence relates to the infection, and to know that it is appropriate for you to return to work. As always, we expect and appreciate your cooperation if and when medical information is sought.

Confidentiality of Medical Information 

Our policy is to treat any medical information as a confidential medical record. In furtherance of this policy, any disclosure of medical information is in limited circumstances with supervisors, managers, first aid and safety personnel, and government officials as required by law.

Social Distancing Guidelines for Workplace Infectious Disease Outbreaks

In the event of an infectious disease outbreak, SSG may implement these social distancing guidelines to minimize the spread of the disease among the staff.

During the workday, employees are requested to:

1. Avoid meeting people face-to-face. Employees are encouraged to use the telephone, online conferencing, e-mail or instant messaging to conduct business as much as possible, even when participants are in the same building.

2. If a face-to-face meeting is unavoidable, minimize the meeting time, choose a large meeting room and sit at least one yard or three feet from each other if possible; avoid person-to-person contact such as shaking hands.

3. Avoid any unnecessary travel and cancel or postpone nonessential meetings, gatherings, workshops and training sessions.

4. Do not congregate in work rooms, pantries, copier rooms or other areas where people socialize.

5. Bring lunch and eat at your desk or away from others (avoid lunchrooms and crowded restaurants).

6. Encourage members and others to request information and orders via phone and e-mail in order to minimize person-to-person contact. Have the orders, materials and information ready for fast pick-up or delivery.

Outside activities

Employees might be encouraged to the extent possible to:

1. Avoid public transportation (walk, cycle, drive a car) or go early or late to avoid rush-hour crowding on public transportation.

2. Avoid recreational or other leisure classes, meetings, activities, etc., where employees might come into contact with contagious people. 

Hiring and Employment During a Potential Threat or Spread of Infection in the Workplace

Sloan Security Group will not discriminate against job applicants or employees with a communicable disease. These individuals will not be denied access to the workplace or jobsite solely because they have a communicable disease, but may be excluded from company facilities, programs and functions if Sloan Security Group determines that restriction is necessary to protect the welfare of the infected individual or the welfare of others.

SSG will comply with all applicable statutes that protect the privacy of individuals with communicable diseases.

Abuse of this policy will result in disciplinary action up to and including termination. SSG reserve the right to revise this policy without notice during changing pandemic conditions.

ADDENDUM A INFECTIOUS DISEASE CONTROL POLICY- COVID-19

The COVID 19 Response Plan is a supplement to the Infectious Disease Control Policy and sets forth the expectations that Sloan Security Group (or SSG) and subsidiaries must adhere to during the COVID 19 pandemic. SSG will take proactive steps to protect the workplace, the safety of its employees and partners, especially those working on site. The CDC requirements and recommendations to prevent transmission have been incorporated as it relates to COVID 19 effective April 10, 2020.

Sloan Security Group (SSG) is committed to providing authoritative information regarding the transmission and spread of COVID 19, including symptoms and signs to watch for, and required governmental notices enlisting the required steps to be taken in accordance with CDC Guidelines and the World Health Organization.

Preventing the Spread of COVID 19 as recommended by CDC guidelines

Communication: Staying Home When Ill 

Sloan Security Group and its executive team is communicating information from the CDC to employees via weekly emails and weekly safety meetings through the use of virtual software. Many times, with the best of intentions, employees report to work even though they feel ill. Sloan Security Group and its subsidiaries actively encourage our employees to stay home if they are feeling ill.

During this COVID 19 outbreak, it is critical that employees do not report to work while they are ill and/or experiencing the following symptoms: fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue.

To ensure adherence, all employees of SSG and subsidiaries will be asked to provide answers to these 4 questions before being allowed access to any office locations and or jobsites.

1. Do you or have you had a fever greater than 99 degrees within the last 24 hours?

2. Are you experiencing any shortness of breath, cough, sore throat, or difficulty breathing?

3. Have you come in contact with someone who has either experienced some of the symptoms above, or have been in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID 19 within the last 14 days?

4. Have you traveled recently from an area with known local COVID 19 spread?

Depending on location, some employees may be required to pass a non-forehead thermometer check read that registers less than 99.6 degrees before proceeding with performing their essential job duties.

Those employees presenting symptoms of shortness of breath, or a cough will be sent home and will not be allowed to return to work until 7 days have passed and prove to be symptom free.

Human Resources and Safety must be notified immediately of any employee  answering “yes” to any of the questions listed above, those being sent home based on exhibiting symptoms or those that have called in sick because they are exhibiting symptoms of COVID 19, tested positive for COVID 19, or have come in contact with someone who has the virus.

These employees will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days before being allowed to return back to work.

If it is determined an infected employee has spent time on a project site, or in the office, these sites and or locations will be secured and shut down for 72 hours where CDC cleaning guidelines will be implemented. Any employees who had contact with an infected employee will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days.

Confidentiality 

Our policy is to treat any medical information as a confidential medical record. In furtherance of this policy, any disclosure of medical information is in limited circumstances with supervisors, managers, first aid and safety personnel, and government officials as required by law.

Owner representatives or contracting partners will be provided information of a possible infection, the steps taken by SSG to ensure a continued safe working environment including any stoppages in work that may occur from this notification.

Ensuring a clean and safe worksite

SSG will ensure a clean workplace, including the regular cleaning of objects (knobs, handles, railings, tabletops, and areas that are frequently used, such as bathrooms, break rooms, conference rooms etc. utilizing products or supplies that contain 60% or higher in alcohol content. These products are readily available at all office locations as well as our jobsites. For jobsite specific locations, the project superintendent is responsible for wiping down frequently touched surfaces and tools. Other surfaces to be cleaned and sanitized at least once per day on a regular basis include but are not limited to toolboxes, steering wheels, doorknobs, rental equipment such as forklifts.

We ask all employees to cooperate in taking steps to reduce the transmission of COVID 19. The best strategy remains the most obvious:

1. Frequent hand washing with warm, soapy water at a minimum of 20 seconds;

2. Covering your mouth whenever you sneeze or cough using a tissue or the inside of your elbow; and discarding used tissues in wastebasket. Avoid touching your face, nose, mouth or eyes specifically.

SSG will ensure alcohol-based hand sanitizers (60% or higher alcohol content) are provided throughout the workplace and in common worksite areas.

Social Distancing; During the workday, employees are required to:

1. Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet apart from each other while performing essential job duties. Limit all physical contact including sharing tools, pens or mobile devices.

2.Avoid meeting people face-to-face. Employees are encouraged to use the telephone, online conferencing, e-mail or instant messaging to conduct business as much as possible, even when participants are in the same building, or jobsite.

3. If a face-to-face meeting is unavoidable, minimize the meeting time, choose a large meeting room and sit at least 6 feet apart from each other; avoid person-to-person contact such as shaking hands.

3. Avoid any unnecessary travel and cancel or postpone nonessential meetings, gatherings, workshops and training sessions.

4. Do not congregate in lunch areas, job trailers, or breakrooms or other areas where people socialize.

5. Encourage members and others to request information and orders via phone and e-mail in order to minimize person-to-person contact. Have the orders, materials and information ready for fast pick-up or delivery.

Face Coverings

Wearing of face coverings are recommended by the CDC. They must fit snug and yet comfortable against the side of your face so that it does not restrict your breathing. Cloth face coverings may be mandated by local governing agencies. Sloan employees and subsidiaries are expected to adhere to these requirements where applicable.

Limiting Travel

Employees who travel as an essential part of their job should consult with Project Management, Human Resources and or Safety on appropriate actions before traveling to assigned jobsites where guidelines or mandates have changed. Business-related travel outside the United States will not be authorized until further notice.

First Aid & Safety Events

In the event that first aid is needed in the workplace or jobsite, the safety manager and or project superintendent will determine the seriousness of the injury and whether or not it is necessary to break social distancing protocol. In accordance with OSHA guidelines and SSG’s Safety Handbook; disposable gloves must be worn when providing first aid, regardless of the injury. If assistance can be provided while maintaining 6 feet of distance, the social distancing protocol still stands. If the social distancing protocol is broken in order to help an employee or crew member who is injured, both parties will be monitored closely for COVID 19 symptoms in the two weeks that follow. This mandatory monitoring if applicable, includes daily temperature checks and daily surveying of cough, sore throat, shortness of breath. Safety is our number one priority to our employees and those we do business with.

Sloan Security Group is taking this pandemic seriously and doing everything we can to limit exposure of COVID 19. Please see our attached Safety Plan & Hazard Communication Plan for more information.

Project Specific Requirements

Every project has specific requirements that may differ from the standards expressed in this policy. Please supplement this policy as necessary to the project specific prevailing standard on your project. It is the responsibility of the project team including the Project Manager and the Project Superintendent to communicate to all employees, subcontractors and vendors the appropriate requirements to work safely on this project.

ADDENDUM B INFECTIOUS DISEASE CONTROL POLICY- COVID-19

Beginning Monday, April 27,2020 all jobsites and office personnel reporting for work will be required to sign in daily, answer the required questions and have their temperature taken before reporting for duty. You will find the electronic sign in sheet here: www.sloansg.com/updates/ – COVID-19 Daily Questionnaire- please follow the directions and if you have any questions call the office. HR will be checking for the completion of these sign in sheets daily and we appreciate your cooperation.

Field personnel must check in with their Superintendent. Office personnel must check in at the front desk. [1]Those designated to take temperatures will be required to wear gloves and a mask when doing so and wipe down the thermometer before and after each use with sanitizing wipes containing a minimum of 60% alcohol. Our infectious disease policy guidelines and addendums are posted in the office in the break room and shop areas. It can also be found online at www.sloansg.com/updates/


UPDATE MEMO INFECTIOUS DISEASE CONTROL POLICY

Tuesday, June 2,2020: As this disease continues to evolve the COVID Task Force remains diligent in assessing current conditions ensuring safety takes priority overall. Please be advised: Addendums A and B have been updated to reflect revisions for the following:

  • Outlined safety protocols to be followed by personnel performing temperature checks for those wishing to gain access to jobsites and or the office.
  • Amended requirements if contact is made with someone who has tested positive for the virus.
  • Notification protocols when such incidents listed above occurs.

Please continue to follow the guidelines provided in Addendums A & B in addition to the following provided in this memo:

  • Until June 15th or further notice is provided, if you are able to telecommute please continue to do so.
  • Those of you currently maintaining access to the office; masks are required to be worn in common areas (i.e.: the hallway when mobile from designated office space to other areas of the building) where 6’ of social distancing is not viable.

We ask all employees to review the policy in full for periodic changes and or updates that may occur. This policy can be found on our webpage at: www.sloansg.com/updates/ as well as in the office and shop breakroom areas.

[1] Revised June 2, 2020

You can click on the image of our questionnaire to be directed to our form. Or click here.

For further guidance please visit: https://www.cdc.gov

A PDF version of this information is available for your reference Communicable or Infectious Disease Control Policy

Town Hall 3/26/2020

Welcome to our second Virtual Town Hall:

Start out with a Poll – How easy is Microsoft Teams to use for you?

Results in the image shown above.

Reminder – Safety is our priority. Our goal is also to add value for our customers.

Update our office hours have changed. Ryan is in the office Monday, Wednesday and Friday 7:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Samm will be in the office Tuesday and Thursday 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Please ensure that there are no meetings in person at the office.

Update from Greg, he was feeling ill he is doing much better now. He recommends a oxygen reader, they sell them at Walgreens. If you are having issues breathing

Discussion about work from home expenses. Traditionally for people who work from home we provide a laptop and phone device to allow working from home. We do not provide furniture, copy machines, or other items. There will be additional communication sent via e-mail later today with more details.

Next, Cammas discussed the Families First Act – As a large overview this offers additional paid sick leave and extended FMLA leave. If you have COVID-19 or have been recommended by a healthcare provider, or if you are caring for a child whose school or daycare is closed. We will be sending more detailed information later today.

Hank updated us on company financial health. With the success from last year we are in a good situation to handle the storm. We had healthy backlog, cash flow and lower debt. Any expenses that are not considered critical we have postponed or eliminated. Remember every little bit helps with expenses. We also have open dialogue and conversation with bankers, suppliers and customers.

Brice asked us to remember to collaborate and communicate to help speed up your steps to further your actions for a project. Take action by asking clarifying questions and knowing your details. Also know that there are mistakes that can happen. There are high stakes, we are balancing major constraints and unknowns. Please be kind. We have an obligation as a community to support each other, with safe social distancing.

Note, the next watercooler meeting will be next week on Tuesday. Depending on participation and value added, we will see on a case by case basis.

Finally, opening up the chat for questions.

Amber K asked Are we still on the 30-45-day timeline to return to work (office)?

Brice answered at this time my crystal ball is both dirty and inaccurate. From what we have seen, it may be between 30-60 day and some experts speculate 90 days. We will be communicating with staff often if something changes. Ultimately our goal is to keep you safe.

Zach D.asked What is that status of the shop? Working or not?

Brice answered, good question Zach. At this time, we are taking time to re-evaluate workload, projects and staffing. Currently we have no one in the shop, and if additional projects come up, we will communicate with staff. Estimators, if we have additional projects you know we are going to bring into our shop communicate with Bill B. or Scott W. There are still projects happening.

Monday Message 3/23/20

Dear all – 

It is Monday and we are still open for business! 

This weekend, I went for a 10.65 mile run.  I wished I could say I crushed it – I felt a little crushed trying to get out of the truck.  Still, I am walking and it felt really good to go explore the foothills and enjoy the sunshine. Life continues on. 

I wanted to share my priorities as we go through the ongoing COVID-19 virus crisis.

Priorities

  1. Safety – Planning around COVID-19 as a workplace reality
  2. Communication – Finding ways to be transparent and keep many communication channels between all staff. Ie. our Microsoft Teams initiative. This is key to safety as well.
  3. Conserve cash – Greg and myself will take a 25% pay cut immediately; the fab team is going to a flexible mix of work time and PTO/sick team to maximize work without layoffs. 
  4. Continuing to Build value for our customers – Finding new ways to serve our customers and our community

Systems

If you haven’t already done so, please download the MS Teams for your laptop/phone – available in iOS/Android.  You will see a Sloan Team with several channels already populated.  In one tab, you will also see a place to report needs.  If you know of anyone that needs anything related to COVID-19, please list it there.  This is what you should see (your screen will differ somewhat).  There will also be a link to the www.SloanSG.com/updates page in the tab at the top.

A screenshot of a cell phone

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You will use your Office365 credentials to log in the first time. 

Watercooler

Given how key IT systems are to our company and working off-line – please reach out to Cameron on Sloan Team/IT Questions.  He will host a daily 3pm call for anyone needing additional support.  

If you are interested, I will be hosting daily 4pm – 5pm watercooler talks on Sloan Team/Watercooler. More info will be forthcoming from Samm.  Everyone is welcome!

Social Distancing

Post your “social distancing” photos in Sloan Team/Watercooler.  This is our weekend backyard bonfire as Viviane will need to go soon back to Italy.

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Wisdom

Needless to say, there has been a lot of stress recently.  In the course of two weeks, we have completely changed how we do business. Not to mention the family stress of unknowns, toilet paper hoarding, health concerns, social isolation, etc. 

Viktor Frankl’s book “Man’s Search for Meaning” talks about how to persevere in even the darkest times that he endured in the concentration camps.  As people died around him as they built a building with nothing but their hands, he worked with a friend to make sure they came up with one humorous story each day. 

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”

At the end of the day, we choose how we will respond.  Let’s respond well. 

In the meantime, Sloan is working to keep business moving forward.  Thank you to everyone for your continued focus on work, effective communication, and caring for your teammates, our communities and our clients. We will get through this.

Our values got us here. They will carry us through this too.

Have a safe day! 

Brice

Brice Sloan

CEO & Co-Founder               

Sloan Companies

Town Hall 3/19/2020

First, we understand that this can be a frightening time for some people. We want to let you know that Sloan Security Group is still operational, although not in our normal manner. Our mission has been and is now to continue to support our clients while adding value to the services that we can provide. We know that this is an uncertain time, but we appreciate your flexibility.

We will continue to communicate with you via e-mail, text message (in case of emergency) and our internal website. There is no link from our main page to access the employee announcements so please use, sloansg.com/updates. There we will post the weekly message, and any updates as this COVID-19 situation unfolds. 

Next item of business that I am sure many have been wondering about. We do not have any job cuts or furlough at this time. We are monitoring our business, the COVID-19 news developments, and we may have to make adjustments to schedules and hours. Sloan is trying to take every opportunity to continue our work, we will take things on a week by week basis.

Some of our current projects include Shore Lodge, Shasta, Dallas, and Oroville.

Our estimating team is also trying to bring new projects for SMS on-site.

Next addressing questions regarding travel, to reiterate previous e-mails and communications, we have stopped all non-essential travel. Required travel will be done via vehicle.

Matt B. asked:  I have a project coming up in Denver in April that will require a 14-hour drive. I would like to take a work partner with me to split the drive. Should I start planning all my projects that way? Or how should I proceed?

Answer Brice: Matt, your project is a little bit far away. Let’s see how things change over the coming weeks, and then make plans with your manager.

As many of you have noticed we have moved to remote operations using Microsoft Teams. This has been a group effort, thank you everyone for transitioning and a special thanks to Cameron for helping provide support through this process.

A reminder, communication is different when done via chat, e-mail, text message or instant message. Try to do a video call, this will help with showing body posture, facial expressions and more to help convey what you actually mean.

Comment from Collin: I have been working remotely for a long time. A tip I have is to try to do a video call whenever possible, it helps get your message across. Remember, when working from home there are unique distractions – kids, spouses, doors slamming and people yelling. Be understanding, and others will also be understanding. Things are going to happen that’s life.

Comment Craig J.: Make sure that you are in a place with good lighting, a clean space, make eye contact whenever possible. These things go a long way when communicating through video chat.

Chat from Rob C.: Proofread your emails before sending.  I catch dumb errors before sending all the time and text messaging is very easy to be mis-read.

Comment Ron H.: When communicating through means other than phone or video chat, try remembering that people have the best intentions when communicating on-line. They aren’t trying to say things in a mean or hurtful way sometimes it may just short and be a matter of fact.

Chat from Rich P.: Go for walks during ur lunch break, it clears the mind and cabin fever.

Comment from Brice: We understand that there may be new challenges with working from home and balancing your work life. We are a family-based business and have children of our own. Try to set a schedule, and make sure you are updating your status updated in teams, so we know if you are available.

Next there are some announcements:

  • We are happy to welcome Teresa S. to the Payroll team! She started on March 18th, and although her first day was anything but traditional but, we are glad to have her join the group.
  • We are also happy to announce that the Human Resources Manager position has been filled, Michelle L. She will be starting on March 30th. She is currently working remotely and helping Cammas.
  • Cammas’ last day will be March 31st. She may be helping part-time with some consulting, or even in the future projects. Thank you for your help during our transition Cammas.
  • We will be stopping hiring for a little while, until we see what happens with the business.

Final thoughts, we don’t want you to feel that your questions are not being answered. If you feel that you are not being answered please reach out to your supervisor or others in the leadership team. We’re human, and sometimes we have either forgotten or thought your question was already answered. Please have open communication and check-in with managers and supervisors especially if you have symptoms or are feeling ill. Now opening the floor for more questions.

Amber K. Do we have an expected date to return to the office?

Brice answer: As of right now we don’t have an exact date, we are going to see how things develop. I estimate from seeing how other countries are recovering and trends it may be 30 – 45 days. But our goal is to keep you safe, so that may change.

Suzanne C.: Will this town hall meeting be weekly while we are working from home?

Brice answer: Based on responses, this will occur weekly before or after the safety meeting.

Scott O.: “Does the shop get a weekly townhall afterwards as well?”

Brice answer: “Yes. Following the virtual town hall, we will be doing a in person shop meeting at-least weekly. Practicing social distancing of course. It may be more frequent if I am in the office. Our estimating team is trying to bring more projects in house, and we may try to change some duties for people in the shop to keep busy. There may be some slow weeks. However, there may be more opportunities for different projects, travel and different work in the near future.”

Trevor S.: What happens if we or a person who lives with us gets sick?

Brice answer: So, the suggested quarantine is for 14 days. This includes you and anyone living in your household. We don’t want to bring that to work either. Remember that you can use your sick and vacation time. Also, someone mentioned that there are new laws and bills that are being signed in regard to sick leave. We will be sending updates on those as time goes on. Watch your finances, we distributed bonuses recently, it may be a good idea to set some funds aside in case of emergency.

Scott O.: There was a recent signing for the Fence Preparedness Act, are we going to find opportunities for work in that?

Brice answer: Yes, we have a few people on the team looking into it.

In our group chat here are some comments you may find interesting:

Derek L.: Check the CDC for actual formulations for hand sanitizer or disinfectant…. social media is not typically the most accurate source of information especially in times where people are scared. Use your primary sources please.

(If you are having a hard time finding water bottles, here are some great suggestions)

Tracy C.: Camping jugs from Walmart – 5 – 7 gallons at a time. Easy to fill in the bathtub; Square shape, handle and a spout. Use personal cups/reusable bottles and refill at the jugs. 

Amber K.: A lot of sporting goods store (Big 5, Dick’s) have those plastic green Gatorade bottles on sale for $1.99/each right now. If crew doesn’t have their own! 

Nick A.: Be sure to sanitize the big storage bottles periodically. CDC website has guidelines using bleach.

We had a guest appearance from our mascot Athena:

CEO Message 3/18/2020

CEO MESSAGE

Dear All – 

I am watching a wave of global developments impact Sloan at a speed that I have never seen before.  Typically, businesses are like battleships – slow and steady and plowing ahead.  This time we are needing to become speedboats – nimbly dodging waves while finding opportunities and protecting our people and business.       

Some of you may remember a book called “Who Moved My Cheese.”  The premise was simple.  These mice were running a maze when the reward (🧀) was moved.  Some mice became frustrated as they kept running back to the where the reward had been.  Other mice were excited by the adventure of finding cheese in new places. 

This feels like one of those times. In another surfing metaphor that I heard on a Tim Ferris podcast, you can be terrified and frozen on the wave or excited by the potential of riding the wave and the adventure.  The choice is ours. 

In the meantime, my goal is to communicate effectively and make the best effort possible to keep you informed. Please let me know if there is anything that I am missing.  💌

Townhall Announcement

– March 19, 2020 – 11am via Microsoft Teams.  NOTE: This is a remote only meeting.

– This will be opportunity to discuss the current COVID-19 situation and State of the Company

– if you have questions that you would like addressed, please email them by 3/19/2020 9am to Samm at samm.dhogan@sloansg.com.

– There will be a separate Fab Team meeting at noon so we can space things out. 

Humor

Communication Channels

– one of the challenges of 2020 is how many ways we have of communicating (Facebook, Linked-in, text, email, Teams, and others).

– Our primary communication method will be EMAIL.  That said, we will try to keep Linked-In, Text (emergency only), Teams (Daily Coordination) and Facebook updated.   

Some Updates

– We built an internal webpage to try and keep folks up to date on various statuses (you will find this email there as well)https://sloansg.com/updates

– We have moved coordination/communication over to Microsoft Teams for the Leadership Group.  We will be having daily statuses at 10:30am – 11:00am if you have anything you would like added to the agenda.

– All Bay Area work is shut down, however Buckley AFB, Oroville Dam, Shasta Dam and Dallas Ft Worth Airport (and some others) continue.

– Metals is cranking out projects. 

– We have a special offer to do remote troubleshooting at no cost on high security systems (see our website – sloansg.com – for more info).

Sick Leave/PTO 

– We are proud to offer sick leave and PTO – here is reminder on our policies.  Yes – we will enable people to use sick leave to help bridge down time. We will offer some more details this week.    

Current Work Status (3/16/2020)

Go to https://SloanSG.com/updates/ for updates

Tips for Working Remotely

https://www.pcmag.com/news/get-organized-20-tips-for-working-from-home

I would add that looking at Microsoft Teams training would be very important.  This is a powerful and not always intuitive tool. 

Finally – I want to close with some good words from Tom Bosse after my last email (shared with his permission):

“I’m reminded of the little engine that could. There was some uphill chugging going on, lots of it. Difficult, as you can’t see what’s ahead. He kept chugging. Once at the top, he had a great view, he could see a long way. It was all downhill from there!”  -Tom at Sloan 

Be safe!

Brice 

Brice Sloan

CEO & Co-Founder               

Sloan Companies