This year marks Rick Maas’s 30th year working for Mead Lumber and he plans to go from full-time to staying on part-time.
“I’m kind of cutting back,” is how Rick phrased his semi-retirement. By this he means he’ll be stepping down as manager and will refocus his time toward sales and working with contractors. He still plans to work an average of four days a week, down from seven, as was sometimes necessary in the past.
When asked what he’d be doing during his free time, he responded, “I’ll have more time to spend with my family and get things done,” Then he added, “and more time to play golf!”
Rick started with Mead Lumber in the early ‘80’s. He’d recently returned to Nebraska from California and after doing some contractor work, decided to apply for a sales clerk position at Mead. He got the position and a few years later, when he heard that a manager was needed at the Broken Bow location, he applied again and the rest is history.
When asked about changes in the industry that he’d witnessed, Rick didn’t hesitate to say technology. He elaborated and told about the first computer system that was put in in 1986 and the upgrades that it’s undergone since. Other changes include an increase in the number of necessary items to have in stock. “There’s a lot more variety that needs to be kept on hand and in inventory,” said Rick. He told about how Mead Lumber tries to keep up-to-date on trends and new products, which is never ending.
Since ad media is constantly educating consumers on what’s available and where the value is, it’s made the market much more competitive. Mead Lumber compensates by having access to thousands of products. Even if they’re not currently in stock, they can be ordered.
Some of the things that Rick has noticed during his years of service, is that people really care about their homes and devote the time and expense to do nice upgrades. He enjoys helping them with their projects and expressed his gratitude for the customers and contractors. “It’s a real pleasure to serve our clientele and we appreciate their support,” he said.
On Jan. 1, Dan Campbell from Nebraska City took over as manager of the Broken Bow Mead Lumber. Dan was transferred from the Nebraska City store location that he managed for seven years. When discussing Dan, Rick had this to say.
“In my opinion he’s a progressive, computer literate, professional individual.”