i know exactly what your saying! i got fired from a large "merit" shop once, for taking too many manhours to do a job, and for using materials the estimator hadnt figured into his bid, causing the company to lose money on the jobs i did. no one mentioned the fact that all of my final inspections were successful, and that the customers were pleased with the work. that seemed secondary to the company's philosophy of doing the job cheap and fast the first trip, then charging for an additional service call, when we have to go back and fix it right.
btw, this particular company "prides" itself in the large numbers of young apprentices it signs off on each year, compared to other shops in the area. makes the future kinda scary, doesnt it?
on a final note, the guys doing the estimating and bidding for this company are not electricians at all.....they were hardware store salesmen or wholesale sales reps., before becoming "highly qualified" electrical estimators.........go figure..