Canadian Contractor


The Paul Gallop Story Part 3: The long view of customer satisfaction

Canadian Contractor

"Gallop has made a serious effort to communicate his outlook to ensure that it’s understood throughout the company"

This is the third and final blog on the rise and growth of Men At Work, a large renovation company in Toronto headed by Paul Gallop. The story originally appeared in the Jan/Feb 2019 issue of Canadian Contractor. To subscribe to the print edition of Canadian Contractor click here.

By John Bleasby

Gallop credits his core team for not only creating a progressive, positive culture but for reinvigorating his own enthusiasm. However, letting good people go ahead and make decisions is challenging for many company founders. It’s where Gallop feels somewhat at a disadvantage for not having had a mentor to show him how to lead. “That’s where I’m stumbling the most and where I’m having varying degrees of success, with a degree of doubt coupled with a lack of confidence. I’m supposed to be the leader, but I sometimes feel like I’m not worthy.”

Yet despite this declared self-doubt, Gallop has created a corporate philosophy that maintains his one overriding principle. “We take the long view,” he explains. “When there’s money on the line, we’ve learned that by taking the view of customer satisfaction, no matter the cost, it will have been the right thing to do in the long run. It will be the path of least resistance anyway. It will feel better, even if we’ve lost money on the opportunity today. Ultimately, customer satisfaction trumps everything else and pays dividends in the end.”


Gallop has made a serious effort to communicate his outlook to ensure that it’s understood throughout the company. “It’s been refreshing to a lot of them, I think. Some have told tell me over the last few years that they assumed if they did something wrong they might get fired, or at the very least have a major problem.  They were terrified. When that was not the outcome, it developed a lot of trust, goodwill, and faith. It’s encouraging for them to know they can take some risks and don’t have to come back to me for permission for every situation they encounter.” That level of trust and team backup no doubt has resulted in Gallop being able to both attract and retain good people. After all, he readily admits that he’s made mistakes himself. His message to staff has been simple — “Solve the problem, move on, try to learn from it, try not to make the same mistake again. Always keep the company’s priorities in mind: customer satisfaction first, expediting second, making money third.”

Today, Gallop’s personal commitment remains strong. “We set goals several years ago that I hoped to accomplish by the time I was 60. But in fact I don’t really have an end date in mind. I’ll probably see myself working myself to the grave!” He’s also communicated to his core staff that he considers them central to the company’s future. “I foresee them becoming an increasingly important part of the company’s forward strategy. What we’re going to do from here forward will depend a lot on what the core team itself wants. In that regard, I’m in the process of building their confidence and business education so they can take on more leadership roles and responsibilities in order to do that. But personally, I don’t think I’m ever going to feel that we’re done, that we’re finished growing, or that we’ve got the company exactly the way we want it.”


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