2015 Alberta Venture – Contractor of the Year
Muth Electrical is focused on building and maintaining a strong team that works together at all levels to create top-quality results. Founder and president Don Muth says the company’s teamwork and commitment to do the right thing give it a competitive edge.
Muth Electrical’s culture extends back to its beginnings in Muth’s basement in 1997, when he and his wife started a full-service contracting business. With strong lines of communication in the field and office, the company took six months to develop a list of best practices to streamline work, figure out which business risks were worth taking, and improve workflow. “We also asked ourselves ‘Why do we exist?’ ” Muth says. “The answer we came up with was to empower the future. We wanted to build an enduring organization.”
Part of the forward-thinking dynamic of the company is a program to develop its own employees with internal mentor-ship and external training. Over the past year, Muth Electrical promoted five of its own workers to upper management positions, building careers and solidifying its team while sticking to deadlines.
The company’s approach to keeping and developing a good team is an effective one – the two first employees that Muth hired still work with him.
Muth Electrical has faced challenges like partner contractors lagging behind schedule but the company exercised its collaborative spirit, worked with the construction manager of the project and pushed to have the job done with less than expected manpower and under budget.
“Contracting is the riskiest business you can do,” Muth says. “We are constantly problem-solving. Whatever decision we make, whatever we do, we want it to take one step more than what’s traditionally done.”
When solving tough problems, Muth emphasizes the importance of the company making decisions together. “We want to make sure we have a meeting of the minds,” he says. “Our culture is to be very comfortable bringing other team members in to help, and that’s powerful.”