My dad started Wiley Metal in 1982. Soon after, I joined him along with Verne’s technically oriented son (and my brother), Rob.
We’ve been in business for almost 34 years.
We’ve seen the ups and downs, we’ve had highs and lows, and a special event a few weeks ago has made me reflect a little more than usual.
Reflections on the Past
When you start a business, you really don’t have time to think about the emotional factors of “why” you’re doing something. Those questions that we’re supposed to ask ourselves such as “Is this meaningful to me?” or “Am I chasing my passion?” are pretty damn irrelevant if you ask me.
Rather, our questions in the early days were…
- “How do we make payroll?”
- “How many beers do I have to buy him before he gives me an order?”
- “Will I see my sons before they go to bed tonight?”
With that said, I sometimes wonder what my Dad would think with where we have come today.
Supplier of the Year
Recently, Wiley Metal won the Wabash National “Supplier of the Year Award”. As some of you know, this is our 4th year in a row to be recognized for the hard work we do.
I tell you what… I was really excited. Still am actually.
And this time, more than ever… I spent time wondering why? Why does this award mean so much to me personally?
The plaque is great but my staff usually doesn’t like me around sharp object so that can’t be it. Being on stage doesn’t really excite me, that’s why I gave up modeling years ago.
So what is it then? Why?
I think the answer lies in why we won the award.
The Why Behind Wiley Metal
By no means will I ever tell you we are the best metal fabrication business to ever exist.
But what I will tell you is that we care the most.
And on behalf of our family here at Wiley Metal, our caring shows.
- We do go the extra mile.
- We do want to help Wabash National succeed.
- And when we say “partner”, we mean it.
Dad started this business by taking care of people… and millions of metal parts later, we still do the same damn thing.
And we do it well and I think that’s pretty cool.
As a message to our employees: Thank you for caring… it doesn’t go unnoticed.
As a message to Wabash National: Thank you for recognizing our efforts.
It makes this family business, this tradition… Worth It.