Matt Fearon - President, Terex AWP
Aug 18, 2016, 03:00 AM
By Matt Fearon, President, Terex AWP
To succeed in business for 50 years, it takes guts and determination. It also means being willing to take risks that others aren’t taking. Our original founders made some very bold moves early on that not only put Genie on the map but also defined our successes in the last 50 years.
As an example, the Genie brand started out with little aluminum push-around products, and our team went on to the develop the industry’s first articulated boom, a much larger, more complex product for Genie. The advent of the articulated boom was based on the knowledge we gained from manufacturing and selling those push-around products, what our customers were asking us for was an aerial device that would help them work at taller heights and had up-and-over capabilities. So, our company expanded from the aluminum product into booms. Then again, we went back to our customers and asked, "What else do you want?" They said, "We really need scissors, and we really need you to get into scissors." So, we did.
And speaking of bold moves, our owners weren’t just determined to get into new equipment markets, but they wanted to succeed in those markets. When they decided to add scissors to the Genie product portfolio, they said: "We're going to get into the scissor market, and we're going to take 25 percent share. We're going to put up three brand new buildings, and we're going to hire a bunch of people. And, we're going to go for it."
And sure enough, they did it. They didn’t wait either. Before much of the infrastructure was in place to support these expansions, they were making progress toward their goals. For instance, they had engineers squirreled away in little warehouses designing scissor lifts that were going to be made in a factory that wasn't even built yet. Today, you can go through the factory, and there is something like 400,000 square feet of manufacturing space and probably 850 people working. And, we achieved more than 30 percent share, which we have maintained for the last 10 years.
So it was absolute chaos; it was the Wild West. But, our founders had a vision and a plan based on the reputation that they had earned from when they started the company: They paid attention to the customers, and they stood behind the products.
These bold moves turned out to be huge turning points for our company. Bold moves gave Genie the full line of aerial products we boast today. And, bold moves helped us achieve the status of the largest aerial manufacturer in the world. That's a major accomplishment.
In 50 years, we’ve come from nothing to the biggest in a market — and, we’re continuing to grow. Be on the lookout for more bold moves from Genie in the next 50 years!