Another milestone approaches as Osborne Wood Products celebrates 35 years of business in 2014. CEO Leon Osborne attributes the magnificent growth, from a humble one man shop to an 80,000-sq.-ft. facility, to his leadership team, perseverance, and the Lord’s leading.
Rewinding the clock 35 years the foundational goals of the company are still in focus. Osborne explains, “From the beginning our focus has been to express our faith in Christ through business, and to weave that into our business culture.” This culture of faith is extended not only to members of the Osborne team, but to vendors and customers as well.
Throughout the company’s history, Osborne has implemented practices to support the present company and to invigorate growth for years to come. Participating in lean manufacturing, Osborne continues to implement efficiency in business affording customers top quality products with prompt shipping and value added pricing. Regular management meetings have been implemented, focusing on short term and long-term goal setting. The company also works with outside consultants to continue on as a strong, efficient, value based company.
With improved efficiencies came the development of mass customization. Osborne is most proud of this accomplishment. He says, “We have been able to empower our customers to develop their own products in order to meet their individual needs.” Osborne continues to mention that beyond custom designs, he is most proud to see customers incorporate products into their lives. “We get photos and letters telling their stories and how our products have played a role in fulfilling their dreams.”
In addition to running a successful company, Osborne is an active member of the community, dedicated to service. “The improvement of community is fostered by being involved in the needs of children, law enforcement, and assisting community leaders to improve and present our community in various ways,” Osborne said.
Along with success come obstacles. Osborne noted that his greatest challenge was, “moving from a hands on role to a managerial role. “However,” he added, “I was able to put together a solid team of leaders around myself in order to overcome the challenge.”
When running and managing a business, many opportunities and challenges await. Osborne offers advice to the young entrepreneur, eager to begin the venture. “Success is all about perspective.” Osborne adds, “Think of yourself as moving from one boss with some demands to many bosses with virtually unlimited demands. Oftentimes we think of entrepreneurship as ‘being our own boss.’ That’s a fallacy! Consider every sale as a 30-year investment. No customer, order, or relationship is too small to dismiss as having little value.”
As Osborne Wood Products continues to grow and move forward, Leon Osborne is most excited about serving his customers. “I am excited about serving our customers with new products, technologies, and services. I am excited about the rising level of skill and expertise among our customer service representatives, craftsman, as well as our management team. It is the result of the hard work of these individuals sharing their values every day as they serve our customers that we will be more successful in the future than we dreamed possible.”