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Posts tagged ‘Staff painter’

Painting on a Crew Versus Painting on a Staff

Generally, a new painter is welcomed more warmly onto a contractor’s crew, than onto a hotel’s or facility’s team.


Paint crews, more than workplace teams, tend to appreciate more readily that extra braun and brains. They tend to work the new person into the group almost immediately. They’re more concerned with getting the job or project done right, on schedule and within budget. Than on one-upping each other on the job.


Individuals on the crew feel less threatened, than they might on teams. Their positions tend to be more stable. They tend to accept and work around each other’s idiosyncrasies and personalities, with greater group purpose and focus. Usually, their place in the organization is clear from day one.


And, a new painter on a crew tends to know why he or she is there. What is expected, what is acceptable, and what is not allowed.


In February, as I battled a major allergic rash to something, an area contractor cornered me in our internist’s office.


“I read your painter’s blog. Write something about painters on construction crews, versus painters on hotel/facility staffs. I have found the two types of painters to be very different. I’ve found that one has a greater difficulty adapting – making it work – in the other job place…”


Well, S. M., you make a good point.


I don’t know the numbers: how many construction crew painters switch over to hotel/facility painting, or vice versa. And, I don’t know which type of painters tend to adapt and adjust better to the other employee situation.


Based on my experience – and what painter friends have told me, the construction-type painters tend to make a go of the staff job much better than the other way around.


Perhaps, it has a lot to do with extent and diversity of experience, and range of skills and abilities – as a trade painter and decorator. I worked on the contractor – paint crew – side for over twenty years, before working as a hotel/facility staff painter.


The transition proved relatively easy for me. And, I loved it! You’d have to ask my hotel supervisor, and management, how my being there worked for them.


While you’re at it, you might want to chat with hotel/facility painters that have transferred over to paint crew work. Ask why they switched.


I’ve known more than nine painters that have switched (not many, really).

  1. Five joined non-union shops, and liked little except the higher hourly wage.
  2. Three worked as temporary painters, through one or more large franchise construction personnel companies.
  3. One works seasonally with a small, family-run residential contractor.
  4. None went the route of attending apprentice school, and earning IUPAT, or CAS, accreditation.


My personal opinion: It depends on the painter.


  1. Why is he or she painting for a living?
  2. At the end of each day, how does he or she want to feel about what you did that day?
  3. What kind of financial security does he or she need to sustain him? And, perhaps a family?
  4. What kind of career goals (plural here) is he or she aiming for?
  5. When he or she decides to retire, what kind of legacy does he or she want to leave behind? As a painter? As a person? As a citizen of this planet?

Bottom line: Painting is considered a profession, or a job. As a professional, the results left behind need to be virtually the same. Wherever that painter applies his or her brush or roller. Whether as a painter working on a paint crew, or as the/a painter on a hotel or facility staff.


To me, it’s not about where you work, or where you paint for a living. It’s about how you work, wherever you paint. For a living, or as a favor for a relative or friend.



Paint with purpose and respect: for people, property and the environment!

Thanks for staying with it. And, thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”
Copyright 2016. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.


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