When Challenger Designs needed to boost worker morale and create a feeling of teamwork, they turned to ADEC.
“I wanted to try to bring someone in that the team could rally around, to get more of a heart and less of a ‘it’s all about me’,” explained Eric Brown, customer service and warranty manager at Challenger Designs. “I wanted to allow [my workers] to grow as people.”
Enter Scott Buck. Scott, an ADEC consumer who spent years working at ADEC Industries and trying out different community jobs, never found just the right fit until Challenger Designs. Scott has an active mind and enjoys being busy with multiple types of tasks during his work day. When ADEC’s Employment Services placed Scott in a job at Challenger Designs at the end of May 2015, it was a perfect fit.
When Eric first began to create this position, he thought it would be a fairly labor intensive process on the business side, but was excited to see how it paid off through morale. However, he quickly learned he had underestimated Scott’s capabilities.
“From an outside perspective, when I first looked at it, I thought we’d have to have all day tasks – one person working with him on one thing – and that would be how it was,” Eric recalled. “But it wasn’t the case. He can do multiple tasks without constant supervision.”
When Scott began working with ADEC’s Employment Services in 2009, he had difficulty focusing on tasks and struggled to separate his personal life from his professional life. He began working at ADEC Industries in 2010 while receiving job coaching services.
Ivy Crockett, one of Scott’s team leaders at ADEC Industries, explained on how Scott has been able to balance his emotions and focus on his assigned tasks without distractions. In doing so, he became open to learning more skills and gaining responsibility at ADEC Industries. Before Scott left for his job at Challenger Designs, his peers regarded him as a leader on the floor.
For Scott, a turning point at ADEC Industries was learning to work the bag line. ADEC Industries holds a contract with the State of Indiana to produce liners for state offices. Scott learned how to operate the machine to manufacture trash liners and then packed the liners away. During this time, he gained the technical skill of operating heavy machinery as well as the soft skills of organization and time management.
“All the clients look up to him,” Ivy said. “A lot of the clients that run the bagging line don’t have a clue what to do, so we would kind of depend on him to keep an eye out and make sure everything was coming out right. He’s the only client I’ve ever seen who would check the quality of the bag.”
When Erica Rarick, ADEC’s Project SEARCH lead job coach, began training Scott for his job at Challenger Designs, she noticed he had gained a variety of skills from his work at ADEC Industries. Erica had worked with Scott in 2013, but had not seen him since.
“During the first week of training, he did about five jobs and caught on very quickly,” Erica remembered. “By the end of the week, we added on more jobs. He’s really proving he can do the tasks . . . The bagging machine prepared him. He had been at ADEC Industries a number of years, so I think it did help a lot to prepare him.”
When asked about his time at ADEC Industries, Scott agrees. “[ADEC] prepared me. Working at [ADEC Industries] taught me to do different things – the bag line, putting stuff in bags, prep work.”
Now, after more than three months on the job, Eric is still happy with the choice he made for Challenger Designs. He has seen his team draw closer together to work with Scott. He even noticed the most “callous” person on the team softening and taking the time to teach Scott new tasks while offering encouragement. It’s truly a win-win.
Article by Whitney Craig / Communications Specialist
Photos by Rod Tackett / Communications Specialist