Those greater expectations include greater professionalism, ranging from appropriate language and dress and interaction with customers, to reducing "go-backs" on jobs, which he says has saved the company thousands of dollars each month.
"We made our crews accountable for each job and by doing that we cut go-backs down so dramatically it was unbelievable," Toth says. "Before crews would forget to install an arrow or forget to have the manager sign off on a work order and we were losing so much money just going back to places we should already have been done with. Now it's a big deal if we go back once a week for a job. Now if we go back it's usually to charge the customer because it's something they want done, not something we forgot."
He says a lot of the additional responsibility went to the foremen, and eventually Toth had to pull one foreman off, make him a laborer, and put a different foreman in charge of the crew.
"It was a six-month process and it wasn't an easy adjustment to make," he says. "We sat down with everyone and explained why we were changing and what we expected and what the impact was going to be on each person. We told them that the incentive was a bonus they receive at Christmas, but we also made it clear to them why we have the expectations that we have.
"We give them a good environment in which to work," Toth says. "We give them the best trucks, the best shop, the best tools and equipment, everything is meticulously maintained, we have someone scheduling for them - so there should be no glitches on these jobs.
"We pay them more money and we expect more out of them - and they appreciate the structure because it pays off for them. It also gives them a good feeling and puts a little pride in their step," Toth says.
Toth says some employees didn't like the changes, "but we just explained to them that 'you might not like the system but it's what you're going to do.'" Plus, he says, putting this system in place was essential for the next step V & V Line Striping plans on taking.
"We are going to get larger at some point, but it's so important to put this in place so when the new guys come in to the company they understand that this is how it has to be. But you have to have the system established for a long time for it to be successful, and that's where we are now," he says.
He says that next year V & V is considering adding another thermoplastic crew - in fact the debt-free company already has set aside the money to buy the new equipment.