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Approaching 100 Years of Trusted Service

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Lansing, Michigan – Consolidated Electrical Contractors, a leading provider of residential, multi-family, and commercial electrical services, is closing in on an incredible milestone. Next year, the company celebrates 100 years of business success in Michigan. Since its inception in 1924, the company has been serving its clients with the highest levels of professionalism and, in more recent times has grown significantly to become the leading electrical contractor in the region, operating across the state of Michigan from its headquarters in Lansing and regional offices in Grand Rapids, Traverse City, Flint and Kalamazoo.

This only tells part of the story, however. Consolidated Electrical Contractors, formerly known as Lansing Electric Company, has a storied history dating back to its establishment in 1924. Through its commitment to providing exceptional electrical services to the people of Michigan, the company has gained a reputation as a trusted and respected business, thriving even during the challenging times of the Great Depression. However, in 1995, the original owners of the business found themselves unable to continue managing the company due to their advancing age. Thus came a pivotal moment in the history of the business, one that would herald a hugely successful new period.

Successful businessman David C. Mollitor, Jr. recognized the value of the company and the potential impact its closure would have on its employees and clients. He purchased Lansing Electric, revitalized the business, and rebranded it as Consolidated Electrical Contractors. By 1999, Mollitor expanded the company’s reach in northern Michigan, acquiring Martin Electric Company in Traverse City and opening another office in Grand Rapids to better serve customers statewide.

In conversation with company President, David Mollitor, he shared his motivations behind the acquisition of Lansing Electric, now known as Consolidated Electrical Contractors. “My primary objective was to ensure that employees there, who had been with the company for a long time, didn’t lose their jobs. There were several of them who were probably within five years of retirement,” said Mollitor. “At that point, I didn’t have any other specific goals for the business in terms of growth or expansion.”

Embarking on a new business venture can be intimidating, yet Mollitor chose to take on an electrical services company despite lacking prior industry knowledge. When asked about this decision, Mollitor mentioned his upbringing in construction but admitted to having no background in electrical services. However, his determination to succeed was coupled with a motivation driven by his love for the people involved. “I just fell in love with the business because of the people. And here we are 29 years later, covering pretty much the entire state of Michigan. We are now 100 times bigger than we were when we started,” said Mollitor.

Consolidated Electrical Contractors experienced rapid growth, with its workforce increasing from 12 to 150 employees within six years. However, the company soon realized that this growth came at a cost. With the banking crisis and the housing market collapse coming in quick succession, many businesses failed. Consolidated Electric Contractors was not immune from this, and its employee count plummeted from 160 to only 35. Mollitor, understandably, feared for the company’s survival. This prompted him to hit the reset button and refocus on the key elements of the business, with a renewed emphasis on the people.

“We aim to provide alternatives for young people to explore different paths leading to successful careers in skilled trades.”

Mollitor’s passion for Ken Blanchard’s best-selling book, “One Minute Manager,” led one of his employees to contact the author. Together with Blanchard and his team, they developed a set of core values – People, Safety, Performance, Communication, Quality, and Partners – that served as the foundation of Consolidated Electrical Contractors. With these core values in place, the company witnessed a remarkable increase in employee retention and successfully expanded its business to over 245 people. According to Mollitor, the company’s culture was the driving force behind this success. He emphasized the importance of creating a positive work environment and making employees feel valued. “When people say it’s been hard to find good employees over the last 10 years, I don’t know if we’ve just been lucky or what, but we’ve never had a problem finding people. To go from 35 to 250 employees, people are struggling to even find two or three. My advice is to focus on your culture. You need to be at the top of the mountain and scream about how important your people are. At Consolidated Electric, we have seen the benefit of having an excellent team. This continuity brings the highest standards for our clients and a satisfied staff is a positive for everyone.”

Consolidated Electrical Contractors workers in front of building under construction

Consolidated Electrical Contractors’ commitment to promoting skilled trades stems from its belief in the value of the trades industry, as well as the desire to help young people find fulfilling, sustainable careers. Mollitor emphasizes, “We recognize that the traditional four-year college path isn’t for everyone. We aim to provide alternatives for young people to explore different paths leading to successful careers in skilled trades.”

The company’s dedication to promoting the trades industry goes beyond its own workforce. Consolidated Electrical Contractors actively collaborates with local communities, high schools, and vocational schools to support young people interested in pursuing careers in trades. It provides information about trades, on-the-job training, apprenticeships, and continuing education opportunities. “We believe that investing in our employees and promoting the trades industry is not only good for business, but also good for our communities and the future of the industry,” notes Mollitor.

As one of the leading electrical contractors in Michigan, Consolidated Electrical Contractors provide a wide range of services across the state, all backed by a skilled and dedicated team. The company is divided into two main divisions, Residential and Service, with residential division as their primary focus. Specializing in wiring and installing electrical systems in single-family homes, Consolidated Electrical Contractors is the largest residential electrical contractor in Michigan. Mollitor highlights the company’s commitment to excellence, stating, “Our highly skilled electricians provide exceptional service, completing around 1,200 to 1,400 new homes per year—a testament to our expertise.”

The commercial multifamily division is CEC’s second major division, increasingly taking on commercial projects. As more people choose apartments or downtown living, CEC has emerged as one of Michigan’s largest multifamily contractors, completing various projects, including hotels and senior care facilities. Mollitor shares, “We have the experience and resources to handle large-scale projects, and we pride ourselves on delivering quality workmanship to our clients.”

Consolidated Electrical Contractors also has a small but growing Service division, that focuses on commercial and residential services. Aiming to broaden its customer base, the company is actively working to extend its reach beyond clients with homes previously wired by Consolidated Electrical Contractors. As Mollitor emphasizes, “We are committed to providing the highest level of customer service, and we want to make our services available to as many people as possible.”

After almost 100 years, Consolidated Electrical Contractors continues to shine brightly in Michigan’s electrical services industry, with its dedication to exceptional service and a people-centric approach. Since its establishment, the company has experienced significant growth and development under David Mollitor’s leadership. By concentrating on its core values, Consolidated Electrical Contractors has expanded its operations and workforce, solidifying its status as a top electrical contractor in Michigan.

In addition to this, the company is one that demonstrates genuine care for the future of the trades industry and the well-being of Michigan’s residents through its active involvement with local communities, support for the skilled trades, and dedication to nurturing young talent. As the company looks towards the future, it remains committed to refining its services and upholding its strong reputation. With a storied history spanning over nine decades, Consolidated Electrical Contractors’ unwavering dedication to excellence and compassion guarantees that it will continue to prosper and lead for years to come.

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