How Eric Davalos Lives With Honor

Eric Davalos, Pipelayer Helper, has been with Delta Pipeline since October 2020. In one year’s time, after being recommended to apply for the job, Eric has proven himself as the “right hand man” to many, making life on-site a constant opportunity to grow as a leader.

For Eric, making every day great isn’t an option. It’s a requirement.

Laying the groundwork for success

As a Pipelayer Helper, Eric ensures that job sites never reach the point of chaos. That means bringing out the proper tools and returning them to their rightful places when the day’s work is completed. But within just one year, Eric has already paved the way to step into the next position, Pipelayer II, thanks to his dedication to learning new field skills. “I’ve been reading the plans and getting to know the standards, being more of the ‘right hand man’ for the foreman. Gaining that trust can be hard.” Eric says. “Getting everything right, the first time, is challenging. So I take the leadership role seriously.”

Delta Pipeline provides various underground utility services and there is a consistent goal that unifies each team: lay and excavate 350 feet per day, which is no easy feat. “First, you have to excavate to get the pipe in. We’ll dig a couple hundred feet, then head into the trench to start grading before laying pipe,” he explains. “But this is the first time I’ve done pipeline work. Before that, I worked with asphalt, which involved a lot of shoveling—sometimes by hand. I remember telling people ‘I came with ten fingers, and I’m leaving with ten fingers!’”

Weekend to change your mindset

In a work environment that requires you to think on your feet, it’s essential to have development opportunities, which is why Delta Pipeline offers a curriculum through Delta Pipeline University, where Eric graduated this October. “It’s a total of three Saturdays and class every other Thursday for five months. Recently, it was held at Western Water Works, where we reviewed fire hydrant installation and pressurization,” he tells us. “The second Saturday, they showed us how to set up a laser, top-line, and how to use the flowliner. Seeing those who usually work in the office try to cut pipe was a highlight. They’d say, ‘What’s this! What’s this!” We reminded them to go with the flow.”

Delta Pipeline University is a real learning experience and isn’t required for promotions, but is strongly recommended to better visualize what’s next on a fast-paced job site. Eric plans on attending again, as a refresher, before he’s up for his next promotion. “It’s great to help you change your mindset on how to view work. Above all, you get noticed by putting in the effort and having the right mindset.”

Living with honor, on and off the field

“Honor. Commitment. Integrity. Stewardship. Success. Opportunity.”

Each day at Delta Pipeline is another opportunity to exude these values, and each team member aligns with them in their own way. For Eric Davalos, honor is a word he always wants to live by. “For me, honor means ‘do what you believe to be right,’ and be confident that you completed a job properly the first time around,” he explains. “Sometimes, we check a job two or three times to make sure it’s secure. I honor that.”

Although living by Delta’s core values is a personal decision each team member gets to make, they also keep each other accountable. Without people like Eric, Delta’s mission of “Connecting pipe. Connecting people,” wouldn’t be possible.

Join the revolution

October is national employee ownership month and the perfect time to celebrate those who make Delta a great place to work. We are proud of our employee-owners and the ways they live out our core values every day.

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