Editor Gail Ivers with Kur t Scepaniak, Horizon Roof ing
Creative Problem Solving
any years ago I was visiting my parents in Willmar
punch line, but he cheerfully pointed out that I’m really not
when my dad asked me to help him install a trailer
all that brilliant.
hitch on his car. He had everything completed except for
More importantly he said, “Gail, I work with this stuff all
attaching one last bolt. The area in which the bolt and nut
the time. These are the kinds of problems I solve every day.
went was extremely narrow and he couldn’t fit his hand in
Of course I would think of that. If it was something you did
the space to hold the nut securely enough for the bolt to
all the time, you would have, too.”
catch any threads. With my smaller hands he thought we could make quick work of the problem.
Kurt Scepaniak has a different sort of problem. As with almost every employer in the trades, he is desperate to find
Not so much.
employees. He has determined that he either needs to try
I could fit my hand into the space, but I couldn’t bend
to do something about it, or he has to stop complaining.
my fingers to firmly grasp the nut. We fussed with this for a
One of his ideas is a mobile interview trailer (shown in the
long time. We tried regular and needle-nose pliers. We tried
photo above). When I asked him how he came up with
wrenches — adjustable and fixed. We gave up. Now giving up is not in my nature. I kept thinking about what kind of tool we
that idea, he said he looked
Now giving up is not in my nature. I kept thinking about what kind of tool we could find that would hold the nut securely in place so we could thread the bolt.
could find that would hold
at what people in other industries were doing to recruit employees and figured out a way to apply it to his business.
the nut securely in place
Kurt has experimented
so we could thread the bolt. Then I started thinking about
with several different ideas. Some have worked better
other types of things we use to hold items in place. Things
than others, but he is not discouraged. To learn more about
like adhesives, glue and tape. Tape!
those ideas, and Kurt’s business, you’ll have to read the
I found a roll of masking tape, used the needle-nose
story on page 30.
pliers to apply a piece of masking tape over the nut, and we
After all, I don’t want to steal his punch line.
had it! The bolt caught and we were able to finish the job. I
Until next issue,
was so proud. When I got home I immediately started telling my husband the story so he could see how brilliant I was. I got to the part about “we couldn’t hold the bolt in place” when he interrupted me and said, “Why didn’t you just tape it in place?” AAAAUUUUUGGGGHHHH!!! Not only did he steal my
BusinessCentral Magazine.com // N O V E M B E R / D E C E M B E R 2 0 2 1
. Gail Ivers, Editor