As the General Manager of Boyd Metals in Oklahoma City, Richard Schultz's attention is in high-demand. Fortunately for you, we had an opportunity to chat with him recently. Here's what he had to say about the importance of company culture, how he stays current with the industry, and what makes Boyd Metals so great. Enjoy!
How do you start your day at Boyd Metals?
I find so much value in knowing my team on a personal level. I start each day by making the rounds and checking in with key employees. Talking with individuals about the challenges they're facing that day helps me to focus on leading the team. It isn't always easy to exceed the expectations of our clients, but we are committed to it and delivering that takes dedication.
Why did Boyd Metals come to Oklahoma City?
When OKC was first identified as a potential market for our expansion, we talked about the opportunity a lot. The studies showed it was a good steel consuming market. As our decision progressed, we became confident that the addition would be mutually beneficial for the community and for us.
A team of people began to surface who agreed to make a total commitment to the area. David Lyman, Paul Culwell, and I were willing to move our families personally, and that was a big decision. Beyond that, the company also committed to the area in another significant way and decided against leasing a facility. We felt that buying a building was a better show of faith in the community and would make it clear that we were here to invest in this economy and in the people. That level of commitment and dedication to relationships and community is the basis of our culture here.
Positive company culture gets a lot of press, but what does that actually look like at Boyd Metals?
We believe people's personal lives are important and that everyone deserves to be treated with respect...while still having a good time. We have a lot of friendly and encouraging people. Those qualities are contagious and because of that, we have a lot of fun along the way.
We respect our employees by continuing our strong practice of promoting from within our ranks. In this way, we invest in each other and constantly find ways to improve what we are doing for the benefit of the customer. Everyone knows our values, so at this point in the game, I'm not telling anyone what the culture is anymore. It is now its own living thing and it doesn't need much direction to sustain itself.
How do you keep up with what is going on in the industry?
Our management team does keep up with industry news and changes, but I worry less about that and instead focus on pleasing my direct customers. I take their problems to heart and actively try to solve their challenges. In that way, Boyd Metals stands out because each location is managed locally. That means we not only have permission, but we have a responsibility to react to the immediate and long-term needs of our customers. We don't need additional corporate approval.
I watch our competitors and look for opportunities in the market, but I find that is not the best way to spend the majority of my time.
At Boyd Metals, we are not trying to match the competitors. We're trying every day to set the bar higher and achieve something more than even we thought possible. We spend less time looking around for approval and more time and energy bettering our internal systems and our capacity to deliver.
What do you love about working for Boyd Metals?
To me, one of the best parts of Boyd Metals is seen in the result of our collaborative culture and ever-present focus on helpfulness.
Being helpful has a high-value and that motivates us to make tough short-term decisions. It might make things harder for us at the time, but when we go the extra mile, we build a better long-term relationship with our customers.
That kind of big-picture thinking makes delivering for our customers super enjoyable and meaningful to me.