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Forsyth County Employee Finds Purpose and Belonging in His Perfect Job

All his life, Justin Thompson said he had a “hard time keeping a job” that he liked.

But eight years ago, Thompson took a chance and applied for a position with Forsyth County Water & Sewer.

“I love it here,” Thompson said. “I mean, I haven’t ever experienced such great people to work with and for. I think anybody would come and enjoy working for the County.”

Thompson started his career with the County as a service technician, but he worked his way up to Equipment Operator I after obtaining his commercial driving license.

As Equipment Operator I, Thompson said his average day could include line taps, fixing leaks, service line repairs, installing meters or working on main breaks.

“All the nine yards, you know,” he said. “We basically do it all.”

Thompson said his professional journey wasn’t all smooth sailing, as he was on “thin ice” at one point.

“When I started as a service tech, it seemed like my head wasn’t in it,” he said. “Don’t really know why.”

Thompson said he was constantly being written up and finally, one of his bosses had a chat with him, encouraging him to do better.

“After that, I got to thinking about it and said to myself, ‘Maybe I do need to buckle up and do a little better here,’” Thompson said. “I just didn’t want to lose this job.”

Thompson said he “turned himself around,” keeping all that the County had to offer in his mind as motivation to improve. He even got a promotion.

“My boss couldn’t believe it,” he said. “He told me I was the only one who had gotten close to termination but had turned himself around so much after that. But really, I loved this job and didn’t want to leave it.”

In the past eight years, Thompson said he has grown both professionally and personally, making him “a better person than I ever thought possible.”

“I’ve done myself a great favor by keeping this job,” he said. “This is a lifetime opportunity working for the County.”

While the “good 401K, good benefits and great insurance” are a plus for working for the County, Thompson credits his coworkers at Water & Sewer for making work bright and fun.

“That’s what makes life a lot easier, waking up and coming to work, you know – it’s the people,” he said. “I hardly ever see fighting or disagreements around here. Everybody here works together and wants to see you succeed.”

In his current position, Thompson said he gets to train new service technicians and continue to help people succeed as others have done for him.

But most importantly, he said he gets to be a part of something bigger: ensuring that Forsyth County residents have a clean water system they can rely on.

“We make sure we serve good water to all our customers here,” Thompson said. “I’m really happy to work with such a good group of people.”

As for Thompson’s future, he said he is more than happy to continue working with Water & Sewer, securing a “healthy retirement for later on.”

“I love it here. This is where I’m going to finish my career,” he said. “I’m not going anywhere.”

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