Joseph Douglas Homes

The co-owners of Joseph Douglas Homes, Deron Butler and Joe Orendorf, like to joke that builders and contractors are often listed as some of the most hated professionals, considered by some to be untrustworthy and inconsiderate.
"We are trying to change that (image) one builder at a time, one homeowner at a time," Butler said.
That effort starts in the office, a place Butler and Orendorf want employees to be happy to come each day.
"I think by treating our employees the way we would like to be treated ourselves helps them be a part of our vision," Orendorf said.
Due to that philosophy, the employees at Douglas Homes are not only committed to their jobs, but they also take joy in improving the company and helping it grow, Douglas Homes employees Kim Leistiko and Angela Cooper said.
Leistiko, office manager at Douglas Homes, said Butler and Orendorf have encouraged her to further her education.
"[The company] inspires me on a daily basis to achieve my best, and I feel fortunate to work here," she said.
Cooper, the company’s marketing manager, said she appreciates the flexibility she is given and the understanding that she has a family and a life outside of work.
"[Orendorf and Butler] treat you as an adult and believe you will accomplish your goals without micromanaging," she said.
Orendorf and Butler encourage employees to engage in community service and outside activities that will help them stay well-rounded and happy.
"The position people have here is only a part of their lives," Orendorf said.
Ultimately, employee satisfaction leads to customer satisfaction, he said.
"If you have happy employees, they produce a better product, and it filters down to customers being happy," Leistiko said.
According to Professional Builder Magazine, a national home building industry publication, and NRS Corp., a customer satisfaction research firm, Douglas Homes customers are quite happy. Both organizations recognized Joseph Douglas Homes with the NRS Award in Homeowner Satisfaction.
"We determine what all is needed in our product upfront so that what the customer wants and what they expect and what we have stated price-wise all closely match," Butler said.
The company strives to make the building process as simple, straightforward and enjoyable as possible, Butler said.
"[Customers] can make all their selections here. They don’t have to go shopping around town," he said.
Instead of forcing customers to find a lot to buy for their home, Douglas Homes has a selection of lots from which people can choose. Douglas Homes also has a guaranteed pricing program that eliminates cost overruns, has no hidden costs and promises that the contract price is the price a customer pays.
"We are not selling a home, we are selling a lifestyle," Orendorf said.
June 25, 2004, Small Business Times, Milwaukee, WI

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