Reader Pipelines: Emergency Jobs Mean Big Rewards

Reader Pipelines: Emergency Jobs Mean Big Rewards
Eric de Jong, left, owner of Diamond Environmental Services, is shown with Operations Manager Warren Van Dam.

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Every portable sanitation contractor has a story to tell, whether it’s the big construction project they provided service for, or the time they came to the rescue at the last minute to make sure a wedding or concert went as planned. This exclusive online Portable Restroom Operator feature gives you a chance to tell your story, in your words, in a Q-and-A format that reaches beyond the confines of your business.  

Eric de Jong, owner of Diamond Environmental Services LP of San Marcos, Calif., is one of those with a story to tell. The large 25-year-old company provides portables for construction and special events, along with temporary power, grease and septic pumping and storage container rental and service. 

De Jong shared some of his insights into the industry, including the challenges of managing a staff of 200-plus employees, and how his company often deals with emergency and crisis situations.  

PRO: What is your favorite aspect of operating your business? 

Eric de Jong: People often call us with a last minute or urgent problem ­– they miscalculated the number of visitors, or they have an acute problem with their septic tank amongst many things. But we also deal with crisis and emergency relief as we so often experience in our fire-sensitive Southern California. Because of the wide range of material we have, and the flexibility of our committed staff, we are always able to help a customer in need. We strive to exceed our customers’ expectations when we help them, and it is very rewarding when we do. 

PRO: What’s your approach to finding (and keeping) quality employees? 

de Jong: We have a very loyal and hard-working employee base. It is best when our employees give us referrals for new employees, as we know they will recommend people with the same values. In that way we keep the same spirit amongst our people. 

PRO: How do you see the industry changing in the next decade?  

de Jong: Technically I do not see a lot of changes. Economically, I feel the industry will be gearing more towards repairs instead of new construction. 

PRO: If you had an unlimited operating budget, what new equipment would you buy, and why? 

de Jong: California has issues concerning the strict regulations with regard to emissions. That has already forced us to make heavy investments, but that will continue to be so until we have replaced our whole fleet. 

PRO: What’s the biggest misconception about your line of work? 

de Jong: Diamond usually is the first to get the blame when things go wrong on a job site, as people tend to look past their own responsibilities. I guess that is what happens when you’re at the industrial end of the food chain, as many portable sanitation contractors are. 

If you’d like to see your company featured in Reader Pipelines on www.promonthly.com, email craig.mandli@colepublishing.com. 



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