Women in Industry 2018 Spotlight — Lauren Butler
To coincide with our annual Women in Industry issue, Supply House Times will spotlight a new PHCP-PVF supply chain female executive each day during the work week in the month of March. If you would like to be included or know of someone who should be included in our 2019 presentation, email Chief Editor Mike Miazga at email@example.com.
Company: TM Sales (Arvada, Colorado)
Position: Secretary of Treasurer and Outside Sales (12.5 years)
How did you get in the industry?
I was just out of high school looking for a job in Denver. I applied for an administrative assistant position to file paperwork and answer the phone. I was not their first pick originally, but lucky for me six weeks later TM Sales called me up to see if I was still looking for this position. Lucky for me I was!
What do you like the most about your job/company you work for?
TM Sales always has given me opportunities to move up in the company and always has believed in my abilities. (President) Tom (Meek) always has been willing to allow me to develop and implement ideas. Some good, some not so good, but always with the intention to better our company and myself. TM Sales is not your typical corporate company, we are a family. We work together as a unit with common goals. TM Sales is not just a job for me it's a career, a way of life. Everyone at TM Sales is extremely supportive of each other in a professional environment and personally. TM Sales also has provided me an opportunity to meet a ton of amazing talented people as well as develop lifelong friendships. It also has allowed me to experience many life events that I would have not had or thought of without TM Sales or Tom. When I make sales calls, I am really going to see how my friends are doing, to help provide them with knowledge about new products, trainings, and support to them to make their lives a little easier and hopefully more profitable.
How important do you feel it is to attract young professionals into this industry?
It is extremely important! Without young talented people coming into our industry it will become more difficult without the expertise needed to safely operate many of the systems that are needed to maintain the industry. The sooner young people start entering the trade the more opportunity they will have to be mentored by those who revolutionized our industry. The more the veterans of the industry can show what amazing opportunities are available it will help entice more of them to join us. I believe in showing the younger generations why you should come into the industry. It will also provide them mentors to teach them best practices to be successful.
How important do you feel it is to attract women into the industry?
When I started in the industry more than a decade ago, there were not many women in the industry. Today, there are more of us, but I feel as a woman in the industry it's our duty to share our story of why we came into the industry and why we choose to stay. The more young ladies understand the opportunities in our industry the more willing they will be to join us. It's not all about toilets or boilers; it can be so much more. One of the most common questions I am asked is, "Are you inside sales or are you showroom sales only?" My reply always is, “No. I can do much more than that.” I call on national builders, wholesalers, showrooms and service plumbers. I always tell men or women who join our industry, “Knowledge is power, learn from everyone and every situation. It will help you in the long run. Our clients, manufacturers and wholesalers will recognize the work you put in and they will reward you for it.”