Have you ever stopped and re-traced the steps involved in reaching a particular goal? Thought about the path you took to get there? It makes me think of a phrase I rolled around in my head a lot from years of business development in the architecture world. "You never know." You never know how taking a meeting with someone might turn into an "Aha" moment, lead to a job or better yet evolve into a trusted relationship. So, take the meeting. Always take the meeting.
This week Rush3 hit a big milestone; we partnered with the South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Department to handle our quality control, kitting and order fulfillment. SCVRD or "Voc Rehab" is a state agency that enables eligible South Carolinians with disabilities to prepare for, achieve and maintain competitive employment. It is an inspiring and exciting place to visit as each client is there for 90 days and receives training - both on real projects and in a classroom setting - to become relevant in the workforce.
This was the PERFECT answer to our needs not only from a business standpoint but also from a community standpoint. Sure we knew of large fulfillment centers located throughout the globe, but that never felt right to us. (Yes, we are control freaks. Deal with it.) I'm convinced we would not have found Voc Rehab if we didn't just start talking to people. This particular path started with a conversation with a Boeing rep at a Chamber of Commerce meeting. He suggested we join the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) to stay on top of the manufacturing industry. The first SME meeting had Tim Sinclair with South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership presenting. In a follow up meeting with Tim, he told us about Voc Rehab after hearing our specific needs. One meeting with SCVRD and we knew this was the start of a great, new chapter.
It's a huge step for this grassroots product design company; having handled each order ourselves from the first Kebo sold on our website to the pallets we shipped out for the holidays. And true, it felt a little like dropping your child off at daycare for the first time when we left our inventory there, but Wally West and his impressive team at the North Charleston, SC center are pros. So, here's to relevant public agencies, always taking the meeting and trusting that the process is the answer.