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One Man’s Garbage

May 9, 2023 By The Siren Of Support Leave a comment

There is something severely satisfying about acquiring someone else’s discarded, unwanted items and giving them a new home. Whether found in an established thrift store, on the side of the road with a sign that states “FREE”, or gifted upon you from a family member that’s trying to free up space, you are the proud new owner of a treasure. 

One man’s garbage is another man’s treasure. 

My headboard, my couch, the kitchen table, and even my tennis shoes (hand-me-downs from my son – I do have some boundaries) were once loved by someone else and now are loved by me. Some of my acquisitions have required a full sanding and a fresh coat of paint, some a tightening of a bolt or two, and others came to me ready to enjoy with no upgrades required. Not only do I get the chance to repurpose and reuse this stuff, it’s also good for Mother Earth. 

My Dad had a habit of gifting me things that were half finished, or just didn’t work quite right. He was sure that with a little time and elbow grease I could bring life back to these odds and ends. 

With the assistance of my fiance, the pressure washer now works. Repaired with parts from a pressure washer that was sitting on the side of the road. (Unfortunately he also has quite the affection for renewing things. This is my official disclaimer: We are collectors, not hoarders.) The table that was left half finished in my parents basement now takes up residence in my garage, just begging to become something really neat. The set of mugs depicting a lady undressing is cracking and glued, yet still holds strong and will be displayed on the ancient entertainment center we recovered and continuously touch up. 

Thrifting, repurposing, and remanufacturing allows us to give items that have lost their luster a second chance. 

Unless you are hiring a fifteen year old who has never worked a day in their life, or dating a mate that was locked away in a castle until their hair grew long enough to escape and find true love, you are repurposing people. 

The action of hiring, promoting, even dating, provides a fresh start, a new purpose, and a chance for growth and success where one might have previously been outgrown, unappreciated, or set upon the curb. 

The key to beginning these new relationships is to identify what they can do for you, not what they couldn’t, didn’t, wouldn’t, do for someone else. 

When interviewing, the required resume is always within arms reach. However, rarely other than using it to gauge experience and commitment, do I reference the material in conversation. I want to know what the applicant has to give, what they identify as their strengths and weaknesses, and what they need from me to become a treasure. 

Don’t let a potential gem go to the dump!

Reuse: This person is plug and play. They come ready to do the job and look great on paper. Long term job history and the references to prove success. They sound amazing and start working right away. This can be a new hire or someone current on the team and moving into a different role. The history of dependability and performance promise years of functionality with a low risk of wear and tear.

Reman: This individual will come to you with the basics. They have experiences that relate to the position you aim to fill but will need to be fully acclimated and built up to your company standards. At the core, they are capable of doing the job. As leaders it is your job to instill the job knowledge, company culture and required skills to get them flowing and fully integrated. 

Rebuild: This is likely someone that is already within the company. Right person, wrong seat. They have most of the qualities needed but are worn out and need some sprucing up. Take a look at the broken pieces, if a new environment or responsibilities is all that’s needed to make them run smoothly again, don’t waste all those years of service and flush them down the drain. 

Our people are our commodities. They hold value and provide needed services to the company and your customer. Be picky in who you add to your collection, but don’t risk missing out on a sparkly diamond just because it hasn’t yet been polished. 

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