2020

I am starting 2021 with a bang. First is the Miami-Dade College Alumni Speaker series on 1/13/2021 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm.

Go here to register https://www.mdcfoundation.com/boost-your-career?utm_source=Alumni%20Email&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Boostyourcareeremail1

I will reprise this webinar on 1/21/2021 for the Toastmasters District 47 from 7:00pm to 7:40pm.

2019

#ThePurpleSquirrel presents a resume building workshop at Miami-Dade College Hialeah Campus to the SHPE members and other M-DC Students. These days Artificial Intelligence is being used by companies to screen resumes. As such, there are certain do’s and don’ts to pass this first filter. #ThePurpleSquirrel has reviewed thousands of resumes in his storied 40 year career in Corporate America. This knowledge and experience will be passed on at this workshop.

#ThePurpleSquirrel along with his two amazing partners (Berta Medina-Garcia and Cindy Montgenie) will be presenting the above FREE Workshop to the Women Leadership Network of Estee Lauder Companies. It covers the future of work, mentorship, feedback, removal of fear, and public speaking. This is a closed corporate event.

#ThePurpleSquirrel presenting his now famous Keynote to the second cohort of students at FIU Urban Potential (UP) Labs. These students must meet strict criteria for this program such as a GED or High School Diploma and an income cap. The focus is to introduce them to the world of possibilities in the Medical Field.

#ThePurpleSquirrel was invited by the Miami-Dade College SHPE Board to present a one-hour workshop on the nuts and bolts of today’s modern resume writing.

#ThePurpleSquirrel along with his two amazing lady partners (Berta Medina-Garcia and Cindy Montgenie) presents the subject workshop to the Women in Tech group at NBCUnversal (Telemundo). A closed corporate event.

5/23 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. @ FIU Urban Potential Labs (UP Labs) in Miami, FL

More about UP Labs

UP Labs engages non-traditional and Pell grant-eligible learners in a 14-week program designed to prepare them for middle-skills jobs in the health care industry.

10 – 11: 30 a.m. Toastmasters District 47 Conference in Ft. Lauderdale, FL

About Toastmasters

Toastmasters International is a non-profit educational organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills through a worldwide network of clubs.

5/9 12 – 1 p.m. @ Word Fuel in Doral, FL (Private corporate event)

This primer is my gift to all my beloved Millennials. When someone is preparing to graduate from college or university with either a Construction Management degree or an Engineering degree in the Construction Industry, they often think that Project Management is the ultimate and only position and or career path. It’s the one I call, the Glory Path.

Organizational structures come in many forms. The one below was created by me to explain the Glory Path as well as the other, often ignored paths, but equally important to the success of construction projects.

First some definitions of the various acronyms. CEO is the Chief Executive Officer. He takes his direction from a Board of Directors or the Stockholders.

CFO is the Chief Financial Officer. The man in charge of the money. There are three things in business; can you make it, call you sell it, and can you manage the money. Best to get a good money manager.

CAO is Chief Administrative Officer. An acronym in charge of a bunch of other acronyms; HR, IT, QC, Safety, and Training.

COO is the Chief Operations Officer. This is where one can end up after many years of running work. He/She knows the nuts and bolts of the business.

CCO is the Chief Compliance Officer. Deals with the legal issues, plus insurance, and bonding.

CSO is the Chief Safety Officer, the most important on the chart as it is a money maker and is very often ignored or relegated to the back of the bus. The CSO keeps the most important asset, people; healthy, safe, and secure. They are risk adverse.

That’s the top of the structure. Everyone starts at the bottom as either a craftsperson or a field clerk or field engineer or project engineer. The Safety Delegate is someone that has experienced one of these starting positions.

The Glory Path. After graduating with your degree, hopefully you’ve interned at a construction company first, you can start as a Project or Field Engineer. The Project Engineer deals with submittals and RFIs (Requests For Information), while the Field Engineer is out at the project site. It would be wise to learn and master this position before being promoted to Assistant Project Manager (APM). Spend 3 to 4 years here before accepting the Project Manager (PM) position. PM deals with every aspect of the project from budgets and costs to schedule and risk management. A Sr. PM can do this at either multiple projects or a larger scale (>$100M) project. More years of experience and training in this position will prepare you to be an Operations Manager now called Project Executive (Px) these days. This is for large scale projects with upwards of 20 staff members. Can manage a cadre of projects or one very large program and is also tasked with finding and developing work (BD = Business Development). Once this step is mastered then you’re ready for COO and beyond executive levels. I would say 20-25 years before this step is reached.

The Superintending Path. People that like working outdoors, that do not like paperwork and like to deal with inspectors and craftspeople gravitate towards this path. You start as a laborer getting experience in the construction industry and a specialized craft. That’s the craftsperson. Someone that can use tools and materials to create a quality product. The best craftspeople usually become working foremen and then foremen running crews of craftspeople. After years of running small crews then you can take on the assistant superintendent role for say concrete or finishes or Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing (MEP). Now you are ready to be the project Superintendent. The Superintendent is the man in charge in the field of the day to day operations and should be looking ahead at least three weeks. Superintendents can also be specialized like the Asst Super before he becomes the General Superintendent managing multiple Supers. After doing this for many, many years on progressively larger and more complex projects then you can move up to Ops Manager and beyond s just like the PM, the Glory Path.

On the left side of my chart is the Quality Control Path. While Contractors Control Quality, Owners Assurance thus Quality Assurance (QA). Sometimes this title is erroneously mixed as QA/QC. The bottom rung is to start in the construction business as a Laborer and develop skills to become a Craftsperson. After mastering a trade or two then you can move up to Quality Control (QC) Technician. QC Techs deal with the inspections and testing of the various aspects of a project. After performing in this capacity then you can move up to QC Manager (QCM). The QCM position can also be reached by having an engineering degree. The QCM writes and enforces the QC Plan. And can manage the QC Techs and the QCMs of the various trades. The QCM is usually on one project while the Area QCM can be in charge of several QCMs and projects. Once the Area is grasped then it can grow to an entire region, ergo Regional QCM. After years of traveling the region then the RQCM can settle into a Corporate QC Manger or Director. Establishing QC Programs, Lessons Learned, Metrics, and Root Cause Analysis of QC failures.

The most unappreciated and undervalued path is the Safety Path or the Risk Management Path. I say this because most companies treat Safety Departments as a cost center and not the profit center that they really are by saving lives, preventing accidents and damage to property which all translate to the bottom line. It takes a caring person with lots of patience and charisma to take on this path. You can be anointed a Safety Delegate after some training (OSHA 10 hour at a minimum with an OSHA 30 preferred). Here you log observations of safety infractions besides performing another production related duty. Remember that it is the unsafe act that hurts people to the hazards. Hazards can be reduced and or mitigated. Then you can take on more serious safety related responsibilities and reduce the operations type. Some projects will require a full-time Safety Manager which is the next step. The more safety related training one can get the better because you don’t know what you don’t until you find out what you didn’t know. OSHA 500 is a must as the Safety Manager performs all the on-site safety and project orientations and other trainings. Once you have conquered the Safety Manager position at one project then you can move up to Area Safety Manager. Now you visit multiple projects in a given geographical area making observations. This will allow you to move up to Regional Safety Manager which much like the RQCM involves travel to a wider area. Then you can become the Corporate Safety Manager or Director. Many years later you will be the Chief Safety Officer.

I hope that I have enlightened my Millennials by showing them the options. Choose wisely. Be passionate about your choice and go for it!

On January 8th, 2019 I will restart my Adjunct Professorship at Florida International University in the College of Engineering and Computing in the Moss School of Construction, Infrastructure and Sustainability.

I’ll be teaching the BCN 4794 Quality Control in Construction course for the Spring 2019 Semester.

Eugenio Jaramillo will be our first keynote presenter at our Speaker Connect January 26th, 2019 event. He’ll be covering four invaluable soft skills to advance your career.

We’re so excited to have him teach us the skills that have brought him success and joy throughout his life.

About The Purple Squirrel

For those who don’t know, a “purple squirrel” is what it sounds like — something you’re quite unlikely or particularly lucky to see in your lifetime. In the world of business, it refers to a candidate who perfectly fits a very particular role — a prospective employer’s dream.

Technically precise and engaging in equal measure, Eugenio Jaramillo brings an expertise to match his energy on stage. It’s an attention to detail one would expect from an aviation construction director that spanned a 25-year career in the industry.

Eugenio’s Why

We asked Eugenio to give us a look into his “why,” the things that drive him, and the way he sees the world around him.

“God has been preparing me all along to be a speaker. First, as the eldest of six siblings. I was their first teacher. Second, training college kids to sell knives. Third, as a yoga instructor. Fourth, as an adjunct professor. Fifth, as the chief trainer at the firm that I worked at for 25 years. Last, Toastmasters. It has been a real eye-opener that I can impact and influence people’s lives with my voice.”

Talk about a purple squirrel! Eugenio’s life experiences paint a picture of someone born to teach. This is surely the spark of connectivity in his finely-tuned messages.

We also asked Eugenio what he’d like to contribute to the world at large. Eugenio’s answer is an elegant testament to our collective ability to leave a lasting impact with the most powerful tool at our disposal — our voice.

“To do good, no matter what, to the people and the parts of the planet that I come into contact with — and to do it all the time, unconditionally.

That’s the kind of perspective and sense of wonder that gives Eugenio his captivating stage presence — something we’ll all have a chance to see first-hand at our Inspire & Thrive event in January 2019.

If you’re ready to get inspired and start thriving, join us to hear this excellent speaker at Art Serve in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on January 26th.

2018

Dear Colleagues:

I have been mentoring and coaching a young man for the past 16 years that I met at the construction company that I worked for 25 years. We have become great friends and we talk almost everyday. I listen to him and give advice on life and business. I call myself #ThePurpleSquirrel, it is a term used by employment recruiters to describe a job candidate with precisely the right education, set of experience, and range of qualifications that perfectly fits a job’s requirements. The implication is that over-specification of the requirements makes a perfect candidate as hard to find as a purple squirrel. I’m a hard to find coach with 63 years of unique life experience. It’s been 38 years since I graduated from USF with a degree in Electrical Engineering. After college, I worked as a Member of the Technical Staff for a Computer Manufacturer in Sunrise, Florida. I got bored and started a Real Estate Development company with my father. I earned my MBA from UM in two and a quarter years of Saturdays while acting as the President of the RE firm. When the bottom fellow out of the RE Market due to some thieves creating the Savings & Loan crisis I sold knives and taught others how to do the same. In life it’s not what you know but who you know. We knew the family that was starting Checkers in Clearwater, Florida. We purchased the territory rights to SW Miami-Dade county and brought the first Checker’s Franchise to Miami on Bird Road and SW 107 Avenue. Whilst developing a large tract of land in Cutler Bay I reconnected with some friends from the high school days. They built four shells for me. When I closed the RE firm and sold the franchise they offered me a job. I quickly moved up the ranks and became their first Director of Aviation Construction. During that time, due to health issues, I turned to acupuncture and yoga. I became a Yoga Instructor at LA Fitness and other studios in SoFla. I was given the opportunity to become an Adjunct Professor at FIU in the Construction Management Department off the Engineering College. I did the same at Miami-Dade College in their Continuing Education Program. In just 39 months I earned the Distinguished Toastmaster designation. During my first retirement I owned and operated an Art Gallery in Doral and created the Doral Art District. I had a studio there too where I created over 250 pieces of art. I also own part of a Registered Investment Advisory. I tell you all of this to note that I’m a Renaissance Man with a ton of varied experiences including three marriages and two divorces which yielded my greatest gifts, my four children. I’m a father and a grandfather too.

I write the above background so that you have the confidence to call on me for advice. I’ll listen to you for the first hour for free. Please email me at eugenio.jaramillo@icloud.com with your phone number and best time to call for a FREE one-hour session.

#coaching #mentoring #advice

When you first read the title of this article you were probably thinking; inversions such as sirsasana (supported head stand), they’re hard! Or arm balances such as bakasana (crane pose) or harder yet, parsva bakasana (side crane pose), they’re hard because you need to have strong arms, or any of the multitude of other postures that you may regularly have difficulty performing.

But no. The hardest part, and I tell my students this, is getting to your mat. Translation, commitment. I thank them and congratulate them for having come to class and making it to their mat. No matter what your day or morning was like you need to make it back to your mat. You could have a headache or feeling a bit run down from a cold. It doesn’t matter what you experience prior to getting on your mat. The point is to make it to your mat. Once you get there the rest is easy. Remember, yoga takes time and commitment. It’s much like learning to play an instrument such as the piano or guitar, the more you practice the better you get. It teaches you to be patient with yourself so that you can be patient with others.

The second hardest part is at the start of the practice. After you get to your mat. Sitting quietly. No movement, no thoughts. Observing your breath (pranayama). Withdrawing all your senses (pratyahara). This allows you to quiet the mind so that you can begin concentration (dharana) which will lead to meditation (dhyana).

Conclusion: get to your mat no matter what, sit quietly connecting to your breath in preparation for your practice.

I have been mentoring and coaching a young man for the past 16 years that I met at the construction company that I worked for 25 years. We have become great friends and we talk almost every day. I listen to him and give advice on life and business. I call myself #ThePurpleSquirrel, it is a term used by employment recruiters to describe a job candidate with precisely the right education, set of experience, and range of qualifications that perfectly fits a job’s requirements. The implication is that over-specification of the requirements makes a perfect candidate as hard to find as a purple squirrel. I’m a hard to find coach with 63 years of unique life experience. It’s been 38 years since I graduated from USF with a degree in Electrical Engineering. After college, I worked as a Member of the Technical Staff for a Computer Manufacturer in Sunrise, Florida. I got bored and started a Real Estate Development company with my father. I earned my MBA from UM in two and a quarter years of Saturdays while acting as the President of the RE firm. When the bottom fellow out of the RE Market due to some thieves creating the Savings & Loan crisis I sold knives and taught others how to do the same. In life it’s not what you know but who you know. We knew the family that was starting Checkers in Clearwater, Florida. We purchased the territory rights to SW Miami-Dade county and brought the first Checker’s Franchise to Miami on Bird Road and SW 107 Avenue. Whilst developing a large tract of land in Cutler Bay I reconnected with some friends from the high school days. They built four shells for me. When I closed the RE firm and sold the franchise they offered me a job. I quickly moved up the ranks and became their first Director of Aviation Construction. During that time, due to health issues, I turned to acupuncture and yoga. I became a Yoga Instructor at LA Fitness and other studios in SoFla. I was given the opportunity to become an Adjunct Professor at FIU in the Construction Management Department off the Engineering College. I did the same at Miami-Dade College in their Continuing Education Program. In just 39 months I earned the Distinguished Toastmaster designation. During my first retirement, I owned and operated an Art Gallery in Doral and created the Doral Art District. I had a studio there too where I created over 250 pieces of art. I also own part of a Registered Investment Advisory. I tell you all of this to note that I’m a Renaissance Man with a ton of varied experiences including three marriages and two divorces which yielded my greatest gifts, my four children. I’m a father and a grandfather too.

I write the above background so that you have the confidence to call on me for advice. I’ll listen to you for the first hour for free. Please email me at eugenio.jaramillo@icloud.com with your phone number and best time to call for a FREE one-hour session.

#coaching #mentoring #advice

Largest Group of Workers

Clearly, the age group knows as Gen Y or more commonly, Millennials, is the largest group with Baby Boomers second, and Gen X third. They are also the largest group in the Workforce. By the year 2020, they will represent 50% of all workers and by 2035 a whopping 75%.

Most Ethnically & Racially Diverse

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the most racially and ethnically diverse age group is Generation Y. This means that diversity is your new reality. And a core leadership competency of diversity and inclusion is a must for all firms. Firms must cultivate a culture of acceptance and appreciation of all. We are not as different as we think. We are all more alike than we are different. We all share the same fears, same hopes, and same dreams. We all breathe the same air and we all bleed red. We all need to learn to work with each other regardless of who they are and what they believe.

Want to make a difference at work

Unlike Baby Boomers, Millennials long for meaningful work. They will not stay at a job just to have a job. They seek a career and or a calling. They desire a better work/life balance too.

Tech Savvy

They were born in the information age. Technology is their friend. They embrace it. Let them take the lead on the implementation of new technology.

Social Media Savvy

Social media was invented by a Millennial. Let them be your guide to have a presence on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, among other platforms.

Value Transparency and Trust

They readily and openly discuss their salary, benefits, and bonuses with their peers. Management cannot keep this secret. This means that there has to be more equality among levels of workers.

Training and Development

Firms need to have a training and development program. They need to provide a clear-cut career path or paths. Millennials must feel that they are progressing.

Mentoring

Firms must have a formal mentor/protege program. Millennials, if there is no such program then do seek out a mentor. You can’t Google experience.

Next Generation Leaders

They clearly will be the next generation of leaders in your firm. Stop hating on them. Every elder generation believes that the next generation will somehow destroy humanity. They are tasked with solving all the problems created by the Baby Boomers.

The first question that I was asked when I went to investigate the local Toastmaster International Club (South Dade Toastmasters) was, “will you join today?” I said yes.

Three months later, after sponsoring eight new members, all from the company where I was working, I was asked, “will you be our club President?” I said yes.

Over the course of the next year, I was asked, “Do you wish to be an Adjunct Professor at Miami-Dade College?”, “will you be our Test Speaker at the Coral Gables Toastmasters evaluation contest?”, “will you be the Contest Chair for the Division E Humorous Speech contest?” the answer was always yes!

Right about the time my one-year tenure as club President was ending, I was asked, “will you be the Area 52 Director in District 47?” I said yes.

While I was acting as the Area 52 Director, I was asked if I wanted to be a mentor for a new club, The Landing, and if would be a charter member. I said yes.

At the tail end of my over three-year involvement I realized that I was not getting enough speaking opportunities so I joined another club, Doral Toastmasters. I could complete many speeches there including one for my High-Performance Leadership Program.

The speaking chances were diminishing. I was asked if I wanted to participate in a Speech-a-Thon at Miami Advanced where I had been a member. Of course, I said yes. There, I reconnected with the President of Dade County Toasters whom I had coached during my area directorship.

I got the bright idea to help them help me. Since my two clubs, South Dade and Doral, had already achieved President’s Distinguished, I joined Dade County Toasters so that I could deliver my last speeches so I could give them my advanced education awards. Win-win.

All told, I was President for one year, Area Director for another year, was a member of four different clubs, a charter member and mentor for another club, prepared and delivered over 40 speeches, attended the Toastmasters Leadership Institute, attended the District 47 Spring and Fall conferences, and attended the International Conference in Washington, DC.

What a wild ride. I met so many good people. I had so many enriching experiences. I made new friends, new memories, and new relationships.

  • First duty is to act as an Internal Auditor and ensure that the Quality Management System (QMS) is being followed to maintain ISO9001:2008 certification.

  • Annually perform Internal Audits of all projects and select corporate departments (IT, Equip., Purchasing/Estimating, Marketing, Accounting, and HR) as it relates to the QMS in preparation for the annual external surveillance by a third party.

  • Quarterly, ensure that all the projects and select corporate departments and the Board of Directors are having Management Review Meetings and documenting minutes of same.

  • Constantly seeking to improve the company via the QMS.

  • Document, Maintain, and Implement an Effective QMS.

  • Issue Non-Compliance Notices (NCN) as it relates to the QMS.

  • Quality Assurance/Quality Control Manager (QA/QC Manager).

  • First, the owners assure quality while the contractor controls quality (some exceptions occur in the civil world). As such, the title should be Corporate QC Manager (CQCM).

  • The CQCM oversees all the project specific Quality Control reps. Some projects have a contractually obligated person while others may have just a designee or a QC Technician.

  • The CQCM must be technically sound and have management skills as well as excellent communication skills. An engineering degree is desirable.

  • The CQCM issues Non-Compliance Notices (NCN) to subcontractors and follows it through to the closing process including corrective actions, preventive actions, and the root cause analysis.

  • The CQCM tracks, researches and replies to any NCN’s issued by Owners.

  • The CQCM enforces the Quality Standards in the specifications of a particular project and in the company’s Quality Manual (QM) and or the subs QM.

  • The CQCM assists in the tracking and recording of re-work and reports it via a Quality Scorecard along with all associated costs.

Origin of Mentor. Mentor was a friend and trusted counselor of Odysseus. When Odysseus left to fight in the Trojan War he placed Mentor in charge of his son Telemachus. This is from Homer’s classic Greek poem duo the Iliad and the Odyssey.

Definition of Mentor. An experienced and trusted adviser. Guide, guru, counselor, consultant. There’s the travel agent and the tour guide. The travel agent books your flight, hotel, tours, and transportation. The tour guide actually takes you to your destination and shows you what to see, where to eat, and how to get there.

Why have a Mentor? One good mentor could me more informative than a college education and more valuable than a decade’s income.

Who can mentor? Someone a few levels above you in the same company. Someone you admire. Someone that is a role model.

Who cannot be your mentor? Your immediate supervisor or boss.

7 Keys for the mentor.

Ability and willingness to communicate what you know. … 

Preparedness. … 

Approachability, availability, and the ability to listen. … 

Honesty with diplomacy. … 

Inquisitiveness. … 

Objectivity and fairness. … 

Compassion and genuineness.

Duty to mentor. True success comes only when every generation continues to develop the next. We have a situation in Corporate America where the Baby Boomers have retired or are retiring. We cannot lose that knowledge base which needs to be passed on to Gen X and the Millennials as they represent the next generation of leaders.

Mentor Protégé Program. 71% of the Fortune 500 companies in the USA have a mentorship program. Are you taking advantage? Oh, there’s an App for that! Mentoring Software!!

Contact me if you wish for a Personal Mentor and or want to establish a Mentor/Protégé Program in your business or with your employer.