REAL ISSUES REAL ANSWERS: Growing Future Leaders

By / 3 years ago

Real Issues Real Answers Growing Future Leaders

What is the key to igniting the passion and drive needed to become an effective leader?


To a large extent, your company’s success or failure hinges on the quality of its people. With many markets experiencing growth for the first time in years, LBM companies across the U.S. are challenged with finding the right people for key positions—from yard workers and salespeople up to leadership roles. This reality is compounded by the fact that many qualified, experienced people who left the industry during the downturn are not coming back. The phrase “supply and demand” typically deals with materials—but today, in a very real way, it pertains to people.

The Issue

The suggestion for this month’s question came from Dave Renkins of Davenport, Calif.-based Big Creek Lumber. Dave wrote: “Growing future leaders is a real challenge. We have tried a number of approaches, but currently have a small bench and are facing an aging workforce with many retiring in the next 5-10 years. One component of the issue is

hiring well-educated people, which our industry has not always attracted.

“Another is getting people excited about taking on a leadership position. The positions are well-compensated and offer a lot of personal and professional growth opportunities. What is the key to ignite the passion and drive needed to become an effective leader?

To learn the answers, we reached out to subscribers who have opted in to receive email with a brief survey. A big thank you to everyone who took the time to participate.

If you don’t receive our surveys and would like to participate, just drop me a note at, and I’ll be sure to get you added.

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Rick Schumacher

Rick Schumacher is the editor and publisher of LBM Journal, and has more than 24 years experience covering the industry.