35 Year Retrospective
Happy Anniversary to US!
A 35 Year Retrospective by Our President
“Do you fix microwaves”? Do you carry microwave carts”? Those were the inquiries we got back in 1981. I would answer “No, we make microwave filters”, and sometimes the reply was “No thanks, my filters are clean and we don’t need one”.
For those of you who remember, we occupied a small facility in the back of the courtyard, which wasn’t a courtyard then! The facilities were minimal compared to today’s; and, then, there was the parking…! At that time, other buildings occupied the present courtyard area, the pavement did not exist, and the parking area was dirt and rocks. It was sometimes a bit treacherous, particularly after a big rain or snowstorm. We were all lucky to not get too many flat tires or broken shocks on our cars. It was great when they pulled down the biggest of the old buildings, paved the area, and gave us an opportunity to harvest the 130 year old bricks that formed the walls of the old building. People loaded their car trunks with those bricks to be used at home for patio walkways, walls and possibly for helping get traction in the snow and ice!
I had my own private entrance which required walking up a steel mesh staircase that was treacherously icy from time to time. When my middle daughter, Meredith, was about to be born, I ran out of the office, hit that steel mesh, and took a flying leap face down to the ground! I was a mess but survived, and was smart enough to get a covering for that mesh offering some traction. A bit late; but, that’s how we learned in the old days…by making mistakes and not repeating them.
We were not afraid to take chances, and fortunately, were right more often than wrong (or we would not be here today). We worked very long days, and often 7 per week. Believe it or not, Ralph, Gene and I were actually young. We kind of enjoyed the hard work, as we were actually developing and manufacturing filters that no one else had ever tried, and pretty successfully with both on-time delivery and good quality. We always focused on quality, even if we had to deliver slightly late but with confidence that once shipped, our parts would “stick” and would make for happy customers. To this day, we have kept that as the mantra for RS Microwave: “Give the customer what he wants, when he agrees to take it, and make 100% sure the parts are fully compliant when shipped”.
We had some colorful and unusual characters as employees for sure at the outset, including (among others) one that camped on a ledge just outside the old machine shop window (until caught by the landlord) and an administrator who lived in a small hut on an island in one of the local reservoirs. However, we also always had a crew of wonderful, caring employees, with great enthusiasm and company pride. To this day, we are blessed with employees with the same enthusiasm, pride and loyalty. Any future success we might have will be a function of being able to encourage such characteristics and recognize employees for their continuing contributions. I am very proud to have reached this 35 year milestone, and look forward to the next 5 years and reaching our 40th! Keep it up folks, I am proud of all of you!
Then & Now
Still Smiling after all these years!!