A guest blog written by Holly Wolf, Director of Customer Engagement at SOLO Labs.
After 9 years at Conestoga Bank, the bank was sold and I was looking for a new opportunity. My outplacement service suggested that networking would be my best bet to find a job. Networking is as natural to me as swimming is to Michael Phelps.
This was the perfect opportunity to connect with people on the periphery of my usual networking circles. One of the people I connected with was Ron Scheese, CEO of Andesa Services.
Ron and I worked together in our health care days. He was the CFO and I was a marketing manager. We had casual interactions since my office was on the accounting/finance floor. He was always offered a convivial hello as we passed in the hallways.
During my time of unemployment, Ron suggested we schedule time to chat.
This was a win in networking since I knew he had connections outside of my usual circles. Of course, I welcomed his call.
Admittedly, I was a bit anxious and excited. After reminiscing and updating each other, the conversation took a very unexpected turn. Ron freely suggested people that I should meet. I was grateful.
The next day, he made the connections that he promised. In a few hours, I had offers to meet in person, no questions asked, no qualifying, just “let’s meet.”
In today’s networking world, that’s a huge success.
Then Ron invited me to Andesa to meet for lunch. Of course, I was happy to meet him to say thank you. I was greeted with a warm hug that you give an old friend and he introduced me to various people on his team.
One of the best introductions was to Tammy Staudt, Andesa’s marketing person. Her energy is contagious and her spirit is bright. Today, Tammy and I meet for lunch and share ideas. I consider her a peer, fellow marketer, an avid supporter and friend.
During my tour, Ron gave me a copy of Value from Values, the Making of Andesa by John Walker. As a prolific business book reader, I was anxious to read it.
It took me a few months to get around to reading the book. It’s a book that is more relevant today than when it was written back in 2011. My copy is filled with underlining, notes and dog-eared pages. Those are the signs that a book resonates with me.
Andesa has experienced incredible growth and some harrowing challenges. It’s not been an easy journey. But the values they espouse have served them well. Andesa team members don’t clock into the values at 9 and out at 5. These values are part of their personal DNA. John Walker says that makes all the difference. It’s not a panacea for all business problems.
He’s not naive to think that he has all the answers. But rooted in his vision, is the fundamental value that good people, who do the right things, are valuable to Andesa.
I highly recommend requesting a copy of Value from Values to understand the history and the culture created by John Walker that continues today under the leadership of Ron Scheese. But if you don’t have time to read a book, watch the team at Andesa.
Watch them in their neighborhoods, watch them at home, watch them at places of worship or volunteering in their community. You’ll understand what’s important to Andesa, even when they think nobody’s watching.
-Thank you Holly, from all of Andesa for your humbling and kind words. Your friendship and guidance is greatly appreciated. – Tammy Staudt, Marketing Coordinator.