Building Teams in Manufacturing and Engineering with Doug Thompson
Podcast published: January 26, 2024
We jump into the local manufacturing sector with Doug Thompson, Manager of Manufacturing at R-V Industries, Inc.. We learn about how R-V Industries, now celebrating fifty years in business this year, has grown and expanded to include facilities and operations in multiple sites in Pennsylvania, and in New Jersey and Illinois. Doug talks about building manufacturing and engineering teams and more at R-V Industries, while highlighting the opportunities for young people to build a career in manufacturing. This is a great exploration of local manufacturing in Chester County.
- Website: rvii.com
- LinkedIn: linkedin.com/company/r-vindustries
- Facebook: facebook.com/RVIndustriesInc
- Careers with R-V: www.rvii.com/careers/
- Universal Technical Institute (UTI)
- Thaddeus Stephens College
- Pennsylvania College of Technology
- Manufacturing Alliance of Chester County and Delaware County (MACCDC)
- CMMC Demystified (by our friends at Pegasus Technologies): pegasustechnologies.com/cmmc-demystified
Local Food Pantries
Links to Related Episodes
- Fighting Food Insecurity Locally with Andrea Youndt
- Connecting People that Can Help with People that Need Help with Chris Saello
Intro: Welcome to Start Local, where we talk with business owners, leaders of nonprofits, and other members of our community focused on doing business in and around Chester County, Pennsylvania. Each episode will provide insight into the local business scene and tell you about opportunities to connect with and support businesses and nonprofits in your local area.
The Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce promotes trade commerce industry and sustainable economic development while supporting a diverse and growing marketplace. The Chamber is proud to partner with the Start Local podcast to raise a profile of businesses and nonprofits throughout Chester County. Learn more about the chamber at [ccc.com].
Liam Dempsey: Welcome to Start Local, where we connect with local leaders to support local businesses and nonprofits in and around Chester County, Pennsylvania. I’m Liam Dempsey, and I’m here today with my co-host, Erik Gudmundson. Erik, hello and how are you today?
Erik Gudmundson: Hi, Liam. I’m doing very well because as I look outside I see a little bit of snow and that’s very inspiring to me around this time of year. So, I have no idea if you out in radio land and listener land wil see snow when you’re listening to this or not. But know that I’m in a good mood ’cause I’m seeing some snow today.
Liam Dempsey: Yeah. It was beautiful. It was fall fallen. It wasn’t a big, big flake I always get.
Erik Gudmundson: especially the first few ones, they’re still fun. I’m not irritated by the snow yet, so it was great.
Liam Dempsey: Before we get into welcoming our guests to the show though, Erik, we wanna just remind our listeners again about the plans we’re putting together for that in-person event. And what we’re looking at folks is something probably in February and we’re gonna be at a local venue, a pub, or a restaurant or somewhere nice. And we’re gonna get together in person over some good food and some good drinks. So we are gonna finalize that in the coming weeks here, and we will be sure to keep you informed.
Erik Gudmundson: So to be informed, what you wanna do is go to our website, which is [startlocal.co] and sign up on our website. We have a mailing list. We don’t spam you on a regular basis, but when we have something really particularly interesting going on, you’ll receive an email from us. And this in-person gathering might just be one of those interesting things.
Liam Dempsey: I think it’s gonna be interesting, Erik. Anyway, onward we go. Let’s meet our guest today. We welcome Douglas Thompson, manager of manufacturing with R-V Industries, a local manufacturing company based right here in Honey Brook. Honey Brook, Pennsylvania, but R-V has facilities and operation further afield as well, and we’ll get into that for sure. Doug, welcome to the show. Thanks for joining us today.
Doug Thompson: Well, thank you Liam, and thank you Erik. It’s a pleasure to be here. I’m looking forward to our conversation today.
Liam Dempsey: so let’s get into it then. So we talked about R-V Industries. That’s a manufacturer. Let’s start with a really simple question. What do you make that our listeners might recognize or might have heard of?
Doug Thompson: Well, that’s a really interesting question for us at R-V manufacturing because a lot of what leaves our doors, our listeners may not recognize, but what it is going to do and to going to produce, I think every listener could recognize some of our major, some of our major markets include power market. We make components that are critical to providing electricity to all our homes and businesses. We make the equipment that both manufacturers and packages pharmaceutical and food products. We make equipment that manufactures the paper that everybody seems to get at their doorstep, now with the Amazon boxes.
And so, there’s a lot of equipment that is produced by R-V that people may not recognize when it’s on the truck heading to the manufacturing facility. But once it leaves that manufacturing facility, we do everything from providing the equipment that prints M’S on m&m’s to the equipment that puts cheesewhiz in a container.
Erik Gudmundson: That’s impressive. And I think many people might assume you make like recreational vehicles, but you know, making the equipment that that prints the m’s on the m&m’s is definitely not a recreational vehicle.
Doug Thompson: It’s funny you say that. I have a manufacturing background. A lot of that was in the paper industry. I was a customer of R-V’s before I came to work here and I had a number of friends that were concerned that I was entering a market that was up and down with the recreational vehicle business. But that’s not where R-V comes from.
Erik Gudmundson: Very good. Yeah, I was gonna say, like if we’re doing a Jack Kerouac tribute or something like that, it could get very interesting here. But, I wanted to to ask about your particular role there at R-V Industries. Doug, you’re the manager of manufacturing of engineering at R-V. So tell us about your job and what do you do in that role and what are you managing, manufacturing?
Doug Thompson: That’s a great question. Again, as a manager of manufacturing at R-V, it’s easy to assume that I’m the technical expert that is responsible for making sure that we weld things properly, and that we assemble things properly, and that we’re building to print and all that sort of thing. But, I’m surrounded by well, over a hundred subject matter experts that are much better at those things than I am.
My responsibility really is to build the teams for today and for the future of R-V in manufacturing. And also working with the other departments, our engineering department, our quality departments, our purchasing and logistics departments, to make sure that we’re in a good spot from our human systems moving forward so that we continue to be a successful company here in Chester Cab.
Liam Dempsey: In preparing for this conversation, Doug, you shared with us that R-V began is, and I’m not probably gonna quote you directly, but I’m not that far off. Two guys with a welder on a truck, and that was 50 years ago, which is an oppressive feed in and of itself founded out in Honey Brook and it’s now well beyond just Honey Brook you facilities and Pennsylvania, not just in Honey Brook, but around Pennsylvania. A few different locations. You’re in New Jersey and you’re out in Illinois as well. Talk to us about your company’s focus and dedication to growth and specifically growth through acquisition.
Doug Thompson: Well, the R&D and R-V are the first names of our founders, Ron and Deck, and they had a dedication to not only providing needed services and products to people, but providing an elevated quality of life for the people that came to work for them. So, our ability to grow really comes from that dedication to our people. it’s people first, which really leads subsequently to brilliant engineers, brilliant fabricators. The best welders we feel, obviously, I’m sure there’s others that may argue, in the area. And that allows us to be relatively aggressive with acquisition growth because we’re confident that we have the people systems in place to support that. So, looking at our founding, it’ll be 50 years next year in 2024. Looking at our founding, Ron and Vic may not have seen all this growth, but they certainly saw the foundation that was necessary for the growth.
Erik Gudmundson: It’s hard to believe that 50 years ago was only 1974, but no matter how we think about it, a lot has changed in Chester County since then. So what has kept your headquarters and so much of your manufacturing here in Chester County with all the changes going on around us here?
Doug Thompson: People. Our core people are here, and we feel that our core people for the future are here, in Chester County, in the surrounding area. There’s a really interesting history to this part of the world that I think is an amazing combination of a work ethic that comes from our background, in this area, particularly out here in Western Chester County. And the fact that we’re accessible to the educational opportunities and the arts opportunities and, you know, the big cities on the east coast while still maintaining that rural work ethic that I think so often we don’t talk enough about. And it’s an amazing combination. It allows us to attract and maintain really, really talented people.
Liam Dempsey: I love that answer. Just the first word answer, people. That was fantastic. Thanks, Doug. I did not see that coming. I’m so delighted with your answer. We appreciate manufacturing as a key part of the Chester County economy, yet we also expect that probably a number of folks don’t realize how much manufacturing happens right here in our own county, in our own area. And kind of for wider context, we are aware that US-based manufacturing has become a greater priority in recent years. Given your professional experience in manufacturing, help us understand the value that manufacturing brings specifically to our local area.
Doug Thompson: I think it brings a couple of things, Liam. First and foremost is quite honestly a payroll base that is hard to compete with. If you look at the history of Chester County, and I have some other manufacturing history out of Downingtown with the paper industry which has a rich history in that area. And there’s nothing wrong with the bedroom community type. Organizations that come into places like West Chester and Downingtown and as we know, it’s spreading.
Again, nothing wrong with coffee shops and restaurants and that sort of thing, but you can’t compete with manufacturing payroll. And the fact that that economy stays local, that the tax base and the residential base and those sort of things are really driven I think by manufacturing or having a manufacturing base.
And then beyond that, it’s the local supplier relationships. We do a lot of business with other Chester County suppliers, whether it be metal suppliers, hardware suppliers, suppliers of services to R-V. That economy is also kept relatively local. And I think that is a real engine for local economies and schools and just the local community as a whole.
Erik Gudmundson: Education is certainly an important component of people and workforce issues. You yourself have one advanced degree in organizational change, and I think you’re working towards a doctorate in organizational change, if I recall. So how does that level of education and knowledge acquisition play out in your day-to-day work or to ask it another way? What value does your advanced studies enable you to bring to the workplace?
Doug Thompson: Well, other than the ludicrous notion that you ought to go back to school in your fifties and get advanced degrees, I feel it’s actually the timing has worked perfectly for me, right. My children are grown. My wife owns a business in the Morgantown area, Morgantown, Pennsylvania area.
And I think what it brings Erik and Liam to an organization that, what it’s brought for me is a view of the rigor behind research. And by that, I mean the rigor behind understanding your own organization, if you will, researching your own organization with that type of rigor to understand what the key drivers really are. As we know, a lot of times the first why is not the full answer. The second why is a little closer. The third why is closer yet.
So I think it’s the link that I’ve best made and I think that benefits R-V or benefits anybody that studies at that level is the rigor behind the research. And if we apply that, beyond the academic, then real things happen in organizations that are very positive.
Erik Gudmundson: Covid forced enormous change on businesses across all sectors. And that’s Covid was how this podcast gets started. But as we’ve transitioned to our second focus, kind of a general focus on local businesses, we change near constant, right? If nothing else, technology forces us to change practically nearly everything. Almost nearly every day. So with your educational background, how are you approaching change management at R-V to help the business and it’s a bigger one now. Keep up to date with everything?
Doug Thompson: That’s such an interesting question because quite often we think of changed in directed or plan change within an organization, and that’s absolutely legitimate. But I think because of the pace of change that is upon us and will continue to escalate and velocity, organizations may be best suited to start working on building the capacity to change as opposed to the change itself. There are a bunch of really gifted project managers out there, people that have, that understand Prosci and other processes that can really help organizations get and work through planned and directed change. However, if you work on the capacity to change and specifically things like building a team of frontline leaders that work very well together, so that change, you don’t have to get over that hurdle to begin change. It’s removing departmental silos so that you don’t have to get over that to go about change. It’s getting rid of things that are real, like day shift, night shift friction and manufacturing facilities, right? So, that’s building the capacity to change and it, I think it allows us to be better suited for directed and plan change.
But the beautiful thing at the end of the day is this emergent change happens within your organization or can happen, right? Our folks understand our business as well as anybody at a different level sometimes. So as we build the capacity to change, we’re not only more agile for planned and directed change. Some of that emergent change starts to happen on its own.
Liam Dempsey: Doug, in a number of recent conversations here on our podcast, we’ve talked a lot about how local businesses and even nonprofits are starting to use AI or are really using it to greater extent. Can you tell us about how R-V industries harnesses the power of AI? I expect robotics too, and other technologies.
Doug Thompson: Sure. I don’t think we’re to the point of AI yet. However, the line is so blurry, right? We have the fourth industrial generation, or I’m sorry, the fourth industrial revolution, pardon me, which is the melding of the physical and the digital and even the biological world, right? And we’re beginning to see some of that with the robotics. We do employ robotics at R-V in the form of independent robot welding to manipulated welding, which is still a human interface to a machine that is welding on behalf of the human, if you will, to looking at robots, which are smaller scale still human interfaced, robots that do certain types of welding for us.
But, and I think that we’re beginning to ponder how it’s gonna affect the other parts of our business with respect to our relationships with suppliers and vendors, our accounting practices and those kind of things around enterprise resource programs. But it’s gonna be fascinating to see how it all unfolds.
But to your point, Liam, we are on the front end from a robotics standpoint, yet to see what the rest brings.
Erik Gudmundson: In my day job, I work a lot with IT and cybersecurity, and we receive warnings from the FBI regularly about criminals targeting the manufacturing industry with ransomware and other nasty, nasty things. And we see that happening all the time in local businesses. Unfortunately, small and large. So what have you done to improve your cybersecurity credentials with compliance standards like CMMC, NIST 801-71, and just, you know, everything else that’s out there to not only be compliant for your important clients, but also more secure.
Doug Thompson: Yeah. A lot of the work we do is non-disclosure agreement work, right? There’s some specifics I didn’t answer in the first question of the podcast because of that, so we have to be very cognizant of that. We have, because we’ve grown relatively rapidly in recent years in particular, we’re still working through what you may see, Erik on a regular basis, the transition from a homegrown ERP system, that works terribly well for us, right? But now with folks like RW Hartnett and Key Machine and some of the recent acquisitions that are part of the R-V family now coming on, we’re in the midst of integrating all those systems and I wish I could tell you more detail. I do know that we are working on it, because of the sensitivity of a lot of the work that we do, it’s gonna be necessary.
Liam Dempsey: Well, I’m sure your colleagues in the IT department are very happy that you’re being very vague in what specific security measures you have implemented. Erik is nodding for those who can’t see, so I think he is agreeing with me on that one.
Doug Thompson: Well, that’s, yeah, Liam, that vagueness is twofold. Number one, again, I have experts surrounding me.
Liam Dempsey: You might not know what you’re doing.
Doug Thompson: better. Much better.
Liam Dempsey: You’re doing good. They’re doing it. Well, and it’s just another example of how far manufacturing has come. You know, I think you talked about Mike Rowe when we were doing a little bit of a pre-interview and all the attention he’s bringing to the manufacturing industry, but it’s not a simple assembly line with a bunch of robotic type workers. There’s a lot going on. There’s a lot of technology, there’s a lot of engineering, there’s a lot of precision. And there’s an awful lot of talent that has to go behind all that. So, you know, one of the questions that we have is, you know, tell us a little bit more about your workforce and are you hiring right now?
Doug Thompson: Yes. Emphatically yes.
Liam Dempsey: I love your short one word answers. It doesn’t make for much of a podcast, but, I love the explanations behind ’em are of course, perfect.
Doug Thompson: Yes, we’re hiring, and our workforce is fantastic. The one of the aspects of R-V industries is that we will build to a customer’s print their engineered print, but we will also design and build almost to the point of taking a napkin cat or napkin sketch of what somebody has from a process idea and taking it through the entire design phase, and build phase to meet the process needs of that manufacturer. So, we’ve got very, very talented engineers that can do that work. We have very, very talented estimators that understand what it takes to do that work. Our manufacturing engineers then get involved with how that’s gonna be built and work very closely with our fabricators on the floor to fit that equipment to weld it, to assemble it, and to do some of the final work on it.
So, I’m really encouraged with our workforce. There’s some challenges, like you mentioned. Micro has given more of a national stage to the trades, but we’re now working with the smallest generation in numbers with Gen Z entering the workforce. And our baby boomers, which were the largest generation in numbers, are retired if not retired already, or retiring, if not retired already. So that’s a transition that I know that all manufacturers are going through, not just R-V.
Erik Gudmundson: So, certainly a lot of manufacturers are getting involved with innovative and exciting ways to entice the next generation to come out and explore the opportunities within, to your word, the trades. But in a manufacturing career. And certainly the job descriptions and titles that you just walked us through, everything from some kind of computer design to actually doing the building and everything in between gives a lot of opportunity. We know that R-V partners with local educational institutions like UTI here in EagleView, Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology out in Lancaster, and even the Pennsylvania College of Technology up in Williamsport.
So tell us a little bit more about what you might tell a student and that student’s parents, if the student or the parents were thinking, maybe manufacturing is for us, maybe it’s not, what would you tell ’em?
Doug Thompson: Well, first I would tell ’em it’s a career. it’s a professional career. I think quite often we separate what we feel are professional careers like law, engineering, management, marketing from the trades. But, if you speak with some of our folks that help build this organization that are still here at 65 years old welding this equipment that goes to the, you know, to Fortune 50 companies around the world, you could get a really good idea of what kind of career it could be. These people have raised children, they’ve sent children to school, they have hobbies just like the rest of us.
So the first and foremost, I think it is the emphasis that trades can be a very, very satisfying career. And secondly, there’s a trade off again, to be real. You can get a welding certificate or a two year associate’s degree in welding and not have a hundred thousand dollars of debt that you’re gonna incur with a you know, with a bachelor’s degree at most universities.
So I think from an economic standpoint, it provides a real option for people that have skill sets and have desires to work. Not just with their hands, but with their brains.
Liam Dempsey: And you talked earlier that the manufacturing industry offers a very competitive pay scale over some of the retail or other more high street available types of jobs. Can you talk a little bit about the range of salaries that folks working on the manufacturing floor or doing some of the other jobs you’ve talked might be able to expect?
Doug Thompson: Well, I think, It is so broad. It depends. There’s so much different manufacturing.
Liam Dempsey: Yeah, no fair point. Maybe I should narrow that down, maybe just to one job title and talk about that. And you know, I know you have 200 employees in the area and I imagine, right, there’s a lot of pay scales there.
Doug Thompson: Yeah. Well, I think, you know, entry level work in heavy manufacturing and particular whether, and that’s my background, whether it be a paper mill or a steel mill or a custom metal fabrication like we do here at R-V.
An entry level position which can be attained honestly when you’re 18 or 19 years old is gonna be 50% higher than a retail job, as an example, right? If you do go to school, which obviously we talked about earlier, I’m trying to make a career outta doing that. If you do go to school and you get a mechanical engineering degree or a chemical engineering degree, there are opportunities at facilities just like R-V and Honey Brook, Pennsylvania that are just as just as solid from an economic standpoint is going to work for a large engineering firm and a metropolitan area. And, you know, the cost of living differences and that sort of thing as well. So, I really think having grown up in heavy manufacturing, everything from process engineer to A plant manager to the vice president of sales and marketing, there’s, I think it’s actually more competitive than most people realize, you know, the opportunities for folks in manufacturing.
Erik Gudmundson: Being in Western Chester County and also working in the manufacturing space, you’re plugged into to chunks of the economy that I think that folks in Chester County don’t necessarily interact with on a daily basis, at least not consciously. So, one of the things we’re doing with this podcast is helping people understand all the different things that are going on in Chester County, not just in business, but also nonprofit organizations. So, I’m curious if you could tell us from your perspective, is there a local business or nonprofit organization that folks in and around Chester County should know about, but are, but maybe don’t?
Doug Thompson: Well, I would encourage people to reach out and understand what their local food banks are doing. R-V Industries is very active in a couple local food banks. One right here in Honey Brook, and then in the Twin Valley or Morgantown area, which is in that Berks Lancaster, Chester County Triad, there. Having the opportunity to see some of the numbers of how many people those food banks are serving, the numbers are not getting smaller and the the number of children are not getting smaller and the number of large families are not getting smaller.
And, you know, as we enter what could be very possibly a challenging year in 2024, we all know what election years do to consumer confidence and can do to businesses along with, you know, the interest rate issues that have happened recently and that sort of thing.
Yeah, I think that. Very proud of what R-V does for the local community through those opportunities. And I think it’s something that quite often is hidden in plain sight within our communities or these food bank opportunities.
Liam Dempsey: Doug, can you share the names of those organizations that you’re partnering with? We wanna make sure we give them a shout out and we’ll certainly link to them over on our show notes over at [startlocal.co].
Doug Thompson: Yeah. It’s, so Honey Brook Food Pantry and I believe it’s the Twin Valley Food Pantry as well. I might not be exactly right on the tail end of those descriptions, but the Honey Brook and the Twin Valley, I think will get people to where they need to be.
Erik Gudmundson: Yeah. Those are important organizations and we’ve actually had Andrea Youndt from the Chester County Food Bank, and we had Chris Saello on talking about the ALICE population here in Chester County, which is, you know, that area of population where they’re working. But it’s essentially the working poor where they are above the federal poverty line, yet they don’t have enough money to make all their ends meet. So, those are two important shout outs, definitely. Thank you, Doug.
Going back to manufacturing, what trends do you see in the manufacturing industry? Are there any particular challenges or opportunities that are out there right now?
Doug Thompson: Yeah. Erik, infact Liam mentioned it earlier with the, we’re coming off of a recent decade or two where the trades were not encouraged in school. I think there’s been a bit of a resurgence, a bit of a renaissance in traits due to folks like Mike giving it a national stage. But, I would really encourage Folks, not only in and around our area in Chester County, but you know, nationwide to encourage trades as a career as we were talking about earlier. I think that’s a challenge particularly because again, we’re dealing with the smallest generation in numbers, with generation Z coming into the workforce. And, it’s also a generation that’s not been exposed to the traits, you know, the technical schools that were, a lot more prevalent when I was going through school and perhaps you were have faded a bit. We hope they’re coming back. I think that’s a real challenge. I think the challenge that you mentioned earlier, Erik, with respect to technology is a challenge that we’re all gonna need to address.
How it’s artificial intelligence gonna impact our business and our competitiveness. And I think amongst all that is how do we maintain our human systems within this rapid change in technology and these demographic changes, right? At the end of the day, all manufacturing is human driven and I think it’s gonna be particularly critical to not lose sight of the humanity behind what we’re doing with all this technology that’s on its way.
Liam Dempsey: That’s such a great answer. I love not shying away from technology, not shying away from change, not shying away from the inevitability of what’s next, but also really hanging on to the humanity side of it all. That’s really important. That’s a great answer. Thanks, Doug.
So we’ve talked about really just how R-V industries has grown and grown quite strategically over its 50 years. What’s the next move for the company? What are you folks looking to do in the next 50?
Doug Thompson: Remains to be seen. However, I think that, again, going back to our roots that we talked about, I certainly appreciate you guys bringing that up. To me, that’s the Amerikan dream, right?
There were two gentlemen in a truck and a welder. And look at what we have now out here in Western Chester County and Honey Brook. I think again, first and foremost, it’s to provide the opportunity for people for the next 50 years to join a growing dynamic learning organization. You know, it really wraps up a lot of what you guys have been talking to me about today.
There’s gonna be technology changes, there’re gonna be, there are vast changes in our demographics that are gonna be economic challenges and economic booms. But at the end of the day, providing folks in Honey Brook and in other areas where R-V is located, the opportunity to be part of an organization whereIt is dynamic and it is learning, and it is evolving. That really is the human driver that allows us to continue to grow. And, you know, I hope to be a part of that and get to see some of it for the generations to come. That’s really what we’re building.
Erik Gudmundson: That type of growth is really critical for not just Chester County, but the region and or, and the country in general. How can the local community support R-V Industries?
Doug Thompson: I’m gonna sound like a broken record, but, encourage the trades. You know, it’s been, it’s been really, I had a real fortunate opportunity in my career in the paper industry specifically to have roles that sold technical products back into the paper industry. And I got to the vast majority of the paper mills in North Amerika. And the impact that that level of manufacturing has on the local community really can’t be understated. So, not only support of the traits, support of your local manufacturing, Chester County is full. I think people would be surprised to know how much manufacturing is in Chester County in some really neat stuff. You know, similar to R-V, it may be providing components or it may be providing equipment for people that do things downstream that then directly touch the consumer. Much of it is direct consumer manufacture. but there’s a bunch of that, particularly mid-level manufacturing that’s hidden in all these parks that you drive by these industrial parks that you drive by that really help drive the economy.
So just an understanding of how critical manufacturing is to our local communities, how critical it may be to that 18-year-old that’s just shaking his head and saying, well, it’s either the army or welding for me, because I’m not going to college, right? That should still be an option for our future generations.
So, I think that, you know, I’m proud to be in this area, the country because we still understand that. And I would just encourage our community leaders and our manufacturing leaders to continue to give that center state.
Erik Gudmundson: Very good. Thank you for that thorough answer. Iliked it. I’m curious. If you participate in the manufacturing alliance of Chester County and some of the programs they do, like what’s so cool about manufacturing? Because I think that manufacturing is an important industry, that, that does need more spotlight and more cooperation with other manufacturers in the area to be successful.
Doug Thompson: Yeah. I am fortunate to be plugged into that organization. You know, I think, our general manager at Genesis Packaging, I believe has been on the board or is on the board at the current time. So, that kind of coopetition as you put it, Erik, is very important to us at R-V. And we’ve done the, what’s cool in manufacturing with some students, and I gotta tell you, builtin stuff is cool. You know, the stuff that I get to see leave the doors of R-V manufacturing still amazes me to this day.
My father’s in his early eighties and I send him pictures because it’s just cool to see the kind of stuff we have the opportunity to build every day. And we’re fortunate because we build some really big stuff. It’s the scale is quite large, but to an 18-year-old that’s always grown up, you know, fiddling with cars or taking a radio apart and getting yelled at his byhis mom, you know, there. We’re here to tell you there’s a job out there for you because this are the kind of people that build really cool stuff when they go to work.
Liam Dempsey: Wow. Yeah. I couldn’t agree more. And I know my favorite stops when I go to client sites are ones that are growing things or making things because it’s just such an impressive facility and such an impressive set of things to actually watch. And it’s very tangible. So it’s very fun for me. So, I enjoy it. I appreciate what you’re saying completely. Where can somebody find you online if they wanna learn more about you and R-V industries?
Doug Thompson: It’s, [rvii.com]. Go take a look at our website. It’s, I think it’s really well done. We’ve got, as an example, we’ve got in-house marketing guys that grew up here, decided to go to school and study that, and they do an amazing job for us. You know, we take ourselves and our equipment to international trade shows. We, you know, we’re, as I mentioned earlier, we’re partnering with Fortune 50 companies around the globe. And, sometimes that’s hard to imagine in little areas like a spot in Western Chester County, like Honey Brook.
But, yeah. I would encourage people to check out our website. Again, we’re hiring. That’s on the website, but you’ll get a pretty good look at some of the things that we manufacture for those out there that are manufacturing the things that everybody uses daily.
Liam Dempsey: And folks, I’ve been on the website, there is a careers page and there are positions listed there. So Doug, thank you so much for your time today. I’ve learned a lot. I’ve really enjoyed our time together. Thanks so much for joining us today.
Doug Thompson: Well, Liam and Erik, I really appreciate the opportunity to talk to you today and, appreciate the opportunity to let people know in our immediate area what R-V does and, look forward to hearing some more podcasts in the future.
Erik Gudmundson: Doug Thompson, Manager of Manufacturing with R-V Industries, thank you so much for joining us, and thank you also to my co-host, Liam Dempsey.
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