I believe that persistence is a crucial part of my success. When I don’t know something, I ask about it. Doing so allows me to put my ego aside and learn.

 

In 1987 Carlos Jose began his career in civil service. His passion for supporting his community through public service was quickly realized as he rose from Semi-Skilled Labor entry level in the Miami Dade Water and Sewer Department. Shortly thereafter Mr. Jose was promoted to Architectural Drafter with Miami Dade Aviation Department. Mr. Jose was promoted to Supervisor of the Drafting / CAD division assisting the department in converting manual drafting to Computer Aided Design and introducing (GIS) Geographical Information System to the Airport. It was here that he found his calling. In time he was promoted again to GIS (Geographical Information Systems) supervisor. Here he supported more than 32 drafters and others to work in conjunction with the airlines for the benefit of the airport. By doing so, he was able to direct a team of Drafter’s and Architects to create a cohesive environment that both saved money and encouraged security. The Airport recovered over 1 million square feet of unclaimed space in turn increasing revenue for the department, identifying tenant squatters and eliminating possible security threats.

Carlos Jose’s impressive accomplishments in the GIS department led him to several promotions eventually becoming a Division Director of Technical Support. As an executive Mr. Jose implemented many money saving ideas enhancing productivity and customer service to the traveling public. His 2007 promotion to Assistant Facilities Director of Facilities Management and Engineering. In this position, he oversaw more than 700 employees. By consolidating several divisions, he was better able to optimize the life cycle of the airports facilities and improve communication between departments. Increasing productivity and reducing life cycle cost to facilities on campus. This process ensured that Designs created by engineering staff and consulting firms were in line with the maintenance departments capability to maintain the facility for 40 or 60 years. “If we design a facility with maintenance in mind we can reduce operational cost and increase facility or customer disruption”. In turn, updates were done by engineering made the job easier for maintenance workers increasing productivity. This effort saves the airport and facility owners millions of dollars annually. He takes great pride in this endeavor.

Carlos Jose had made public service his passion when he was given the opportunity to help optimize and assist the Information Technology Department. His current department is responsible for building county-wide standards for troubleshooting, developing processes for computer management, and creating and implementing solutions. His efforts have developed improvements to the capital programs and a dashboard for integrating information across county-wide networks as needed. This will streamline both transparency and create better communications between county departments including citizens.

Where did the idea for entering public service come from?

It was something that had my attention while in high school, but that only deepened as I started working for the county. Very early on in my career, I fell in love with county policy and politics. Working for the government is not just about getting a paycheck, but about the mission and making a difference in helping my community. It is wonderful to see how things you work on become tangible in a way that benefits others. It is rewarding to me to know that I’ve helped out the community and contributed in one way or another.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

My day consists of answering emails, following up on phone calls, speaking with those both on and off my team that have concerns. Together with my team, we develop solutions where others are unable to. When members of my team face a particularly difficult challenge we sit down and discuss it thoroughly. When superiors set a goals, I happily work with them to accomplish them. That way, we can all work together as a singular unit and achieve something greater day after day.

How do you bring ideas to life?

It is my responsibility to empower my employees and inspire them daily to try new things and think out of the box. Most importantly support employees when making decision that may not work as well as originally thought. An individual that is hardworking will get the job done. However, an individual that is hardworking and knows how to think unilaterally can move mountains. Along with that, I pride myself on trying to innovate and streamline our work production throughout our operations area. This allows all the members of my department to access the things they need to solve any problem they are faced with. It not only increases our overall productivity, it also makes things much more efficient and less prone to errors.

What’s one trend that excites you?

This whole industry excites me even till this day. The information systems industry is continuously growing, changing, and expanding. I have to try to stay up to date and enjoy learning it every day at work. It is a daily adventure in expanding my knowledge and applying it to the real-world situations around me. It is foolish to think that once I’ve caught up on the latest trends, I’m set for life. In reality, the information system industry is constantly evolving. The knowledge you have today can very easily become irrelevant in just a few weeks, if not days.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

I believe that persistence is a crucial part of my success. When I don’t know something, I ask about it. Doing so allows me to put my ego aside and learn. When something I know comes up and is challenged, I push through it. With my strong work ethic, I have been able to maintain quality results in everything I have done. Couple those important aspects with my loyalty to the organization, in this case, our county, I find myself striving to make the county better with everything I do. In addition I have adopted many daily habits of successful entrepreneurs. I plan strategically, I lead a healthy lifestyle to the best of my ability, stay within my area of expertise and do step outside my comfort zone.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would tell younger Carlos Jose give back to local universities and high schools. Help guide our future young men and women in a direction of facility cost savings and functionality. Make them aware of environmentally emerging analytical tools are drivers in the industry. Some that provide information about building operation and conservation in turn paying for themselves over time.
Try different jobs within your interest until you find one you love. Sometimes the answer may surprise you. Don’t be afraid to try things outside your area of expertise. Treat life like a learning adventure, push yourself to learn new unconventional methods!

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on?

The life cycle of a building is an essential component in the design. It is as important, if not more so than the aesthetics of the building. Keeping the life cycle of the building in mind, including maintenance requirements, expected wear and tear, and functional use enables a designer to create something that will improve overall costs and environmental impact.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

It is important to always revisit the job function and expectations. Your team changes and needs of your community or company will change as well. Similar to updating yourself on the latest trends in technology, this means expectations and procedures need to be regularly updated; don’t be afraid of change. I make it a point to revisit what is expected and how we are anticipating accomplishing our goals on a regular basis. When perhaps many people see hurdles, I see opportunity. When others are careful and apprehensive, I look at things with an optimistic eye. I don’t like calling myself a Manager, assistant director or and major title. I feel box into a corner with a label. I feel titles are a old way of thinking and limiting staff not to work beyond their capability.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

Although I work my entire career for the government, I throughout the years noticed that I think like an entrepreneur. I have made major changes in government and accomplished to finish major projects when many could not do so.
In addition, I have learned that it is important to listen to those around you. I make sure to listen to their issues and with them, we explore solutions together. There is no fear that a solution won’t work. Instead, that is an opportunity to learn a new approach to resolving the issue at hand. Talking with others also ensures the processes are both transparent and open for improvement.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

At times I have been curious about working in the private sector. Never having worked either for myself or private companies I at times felt I should have explored the outside world. Every now and then, I think about how my life would have turned out if young Carlos Jose made the decision to work in the private sector instead of public. I wonder if I would’ve achieved the same level of success. I think I would have exceeded my current success but never would have helped the public like I have.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

I would suggest that someone finds a way to pair mechanical information management with developing a plan for optimizing facility utilization. The lack of building management systems is one area where millions of dollars are lost each year. If someone can find a way to gather the data from the mechanical systems in building management and identify paths to improving the use thereof they will land on a tremendous business opportunity. By saving people millions each year, they will gain the same and help the environment along the way. This process is a residual money making process. Companies pay monthly installments for companies to save them operational costs. It pays for itself. (quickly)

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

I found the best $100 investment I made was in a local networking group. It gave me the opportunity to learn from other leaders in my community and county. We were able to connect with similar obstacles and brainstorm new ways to address them. There is also the opportunity to find a way to help others or learn how others might help you resolve or improve situations within your organization. It was worth the investment and time spent to make these connections.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

Microsoft Projects and VISIO is a fantastic project management program and structure organizer that reduces down time. It has allowed me to track our work, manage our schedules and deadlines while documenting any delays or changes along the way. I cannot see myself running the operation without these two softwares.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

Leadership Lessons of Robert E. Lee” written by Bill Holton

This book is an excellent example of leadership through example and inspiration. This general, while on the wrong side of history, was able to inspire his troops to continue fighting even after the war if he said so. His leadership was so inspirational that he held the loyalty of all of his troops long after he left the battlefield. That is something every leader should work hard for.

What is your favorite quote?

All things, therefore, that you want men to do to you, you also must do to them
– Matt. 7:12 NWT

Key learnings:

  • Take care of those working under you
  • Encourage and empower each other
  • Be transparent in everything that you do
  • Work hard to think outside the box
  • Be prepared to accomplish any goal

Connect:

carlos-jose.com
Carlos Jose on Crunchbase: https://www.crunchbase.com/person/carlos-jose
Carlos Jose on Twitter: https://twitter.com/CarlosJose_MDAD
Carlos Jose on Linkedin: www.linkedin.com/in/carlos-jose-mdad
Carlos Jose on Behance: http://www.behance.net/carlos-jose