IBEW NECA 665 is highlighting NECA contractors to showcase the top-tier services they provide to the community. This spotlight is on F.D. Hayes Electric Company, located in Lansing, Michigan. We spoke with F.D. Hayes owner Megan Doherty to learn more about the business, including what types of services the team provides and Megan's role as owner.
Q: What led to your career in the electrical industry?
A: F.D. Hayes is a family business. It was started by my great grandfather, and I'm the fourth generation leader. I grew up with F.D. Hayes as our family business, so it's those family ties that drew me in.
Q: Describe your role and history with F.D. Hayes.
A: As a kid I had several jobs at F.D. Hayes, from sweeping the floors to helping with inventory. My professional role began in 2014 as the Comptroller. In 2016 my husband, Charlie, and I purchased the company from my father, and I took over as the president and CEO.
Q: When you were younger, did you ever picture yourself running the company?
A: Absolutely not. When I graduated from college and moved out of state, I honestly thought I would never live in Michigan -- and definitely not in Lansing -- again. And that's been a great surprise.
Q: What brought you back?
A: As I grew older, I experienced a change of priorities. Getting married and having kids, I really started to value that family connection in a different and deeper way.
Q: What is your average day like?
A: My average day involves wearing a lot of different hats, but I'm largely responsible for overseeing our day-to-day accounting functions, and also operations.
A: What is your favorite part of your job?
Q: My favorite part is making meaningful connections with people -- with our employees, our customers, and within our community. I really love collaborating to solve problems and find solutions.
Q: What are some of your company’s current goals, and how does your team work to meet them?
A: We've recently added on to our low voltage department, so we're really focused on getting the word out and being able to deliver sound, AV and security solutions to our customers. With COVID-19, we’re also really focused on creating safe work practices for our employees in the field and in the office, and keeping our customers safe as well.
Q: What makes F.D. Hayes unique, and what is your company culture like?
A: Our diversity of products and services is what makes us unique. In addition to the traditional electrical contracting services, we offer a full range of low voltage and data services. We also have a large service department that includes one of mid-Michigan's top Generac generator dealers, and we even have a commercial kitchen equipment repair person that services food equipment for restaurants and cafeterias. As far as the culture, we're family owned and operated and have been for over 98 years. That family feel is what people most appreciate about our culture. Everything we do is centered on the importance of relationships, not transactions.
Q: Why should customers choose F.D. Hayes?
A: F.D. Hayes is committed to living our core values of communication, collaboration, quality and safety. This is the promise that we deliver to our customers every day.
Q: What does being part of the National Electrical Contractors Association trade group mean to you as a business owner?
A: Being part of NECA means having a larger voice at the table when it comes to safety regulations and the legislation that shapes our industry. It means partnering with an organization that values safety, quality and training as much as we do as a company, and they help provide scalable resources for all of those.
Q: What do you wish people knew about the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers union and NECA?
A: I would like people to know that IBEW and NECA are synonymous with safety, quality and value. These things matter to our customers, to NECA members, and to employees alike. I also want people to know that these organizations -- representing labor and management -- are not opposing forces. We are industry partners, and we help support each other.
Q: Who have been your strongest influences in life?
A: My parents were my earliest and strongest influences. They set an incredible example of integrity, kindness, and also working hard.
Q: What are you most proud of accomplishing, personally and/or professionally?
A: Personally, I'm most proud of receiving the 2018 Inspiration and Influence award for my commitment to community involvement and giving back through my role at F.D. Hayes. Professionally, F.D. Hayes has just been honored as one of Michigan's 50 small businesses to watch in 2021. This is the 17th class of the Michigan Celebrates Small Business awards. The award is particularly meaningful to me because we were ranked against all industries statewide, and there was a record number of nominees in 2021. So it was pretty tough competition to make it to that top 50.
Q: What is your favorite memory of working in the electrical industry?
A: One of my favorite memories is a project that we completed, a collaboration between F.D. Hayes, NECA and IBEW Local 665. We donated electrical safety and energy efficiency upgrades to four homes in Lansing. The homes belong to a private nonprofit called Mid-Michigan Recovery Services. MMRS uses these homes as part of their inpatient treatment services for members of our community who are struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. The collaboration and teamwork involved making this project happen was really fun. It's also rewarding to know that our efforts are making our communities safer and healthier, and we're quite literally helping to save lives.
Q: Describe IBEW NECA 665 in five words or less.
A: Quality, safety, value and industry leader.