“ As I was starting my upper division credits, I was managing 2 full-time employees during the school year, 5-10 during the summer, doing estimates for new roofs, spending hours with every customer trying to create a unique experience- and dealing with all of the personal growth that happens with every person during their early twenties. I would leave a client’s home after an estimate to attend a night class, to later return home and make my lunch for the next day- then fall asleep with an economics book in my lap. It was an exciting time because I had the physical experience of being on a roof for years at this point. I was going through those leaps of faith in my own style of communication and team management, and it was working. I knew the actual nuts and bolts of what roofing was. I knew every corner of a myriad of different problems, and I knew the best solutions. I had catalogued every style of roof and a set of generic “if-then” situations into a word document- that later became the foundation for our business manual. Most importantly- I understood what the customer was expecting and then we taught ourselves how to surprise them in little ways to beat those expectations. That was where we excelled as a team. I really disliked being average or giving average experiences. We were implementing the formal management and business techniques that I was learning in my classes, but we were doing it in real time. I would leave an entrepreneurial management class, head to the jobsite, and fine tune the process to a group of eager ears. I didn’t have to wait to graduate to use my formal education. It became a synergistic dynamic. I fell in love with the operations management of my team. I would look at a project, and would think- how can I do this the best way? How can we use our skill sets together? How can we balance our assets to our liabilities to produce the best available human capitol? How can we push the standard of how this is done? How can we improve today?