Rick Skidmore is the president and CEO of Timberlane, Inc., located just north of Philadelphia. Timberlane is the manufacturer of custom exterior shutters. The company and makes hand forged shutter hardware for private homeowners and professionals in the trade.

What do you anticipate happening in your field that will bring growth to your market in the next 6 months?

“First, the economy and residential housing market have been very strong and continue to stay strong. This obviously fuels demand for goods and services that support residential construction. Beyond that, home renovations are equally strong. Many homeowners have decided that instead of moving, they are going to invest back into their home in the form of everything from a minor facelift all the way to extensive additions. Timberlane manufactures custom exterior window shutters, so we fit nicely into both the new construction and the renovation space. There has been a noticeable trend with homeowners looking to individualize their homes by incorporating more refined exterior finishes such as high-quality shutters and we expect that to continue and only grow through 2015.”

When hiring for your company, what do you look for in an employee?

“It’s no secret that the key to any company’s success is directly tied to the quality and commitment of its employees. This is epitomized at Timberlane and something we closely safeguard when hiring new employees. We believe that it’s critical to have alignment in the fundamental core values of our company and prospective employees. Beyond the basic job requirements and required experience of whatever role we are hiring for, we also look closely for individuals that will work effectively in a team environment, are responsible and accountable to themselves for and others for results and have a strong work ethic. These are just a few of the things we look for but, ultimately, it comes down to synergy and fit. We are a very results and performance driven organization and only hire people that we believe will further contribute to the success of our company.”

 What is the median salary for a position in your field?

“We have a wide range of different roles and positions in our company from entry-level to senior management, from hourly to salary, so overall salary ranges vary quite a bit. In general, our experienced craftsmen and craftswomen earn between $40,000-$50,000 annually and our sales team earn between $45,000-$75,000.”

What advice would you give to someone entering into your field?

“To be prepared to work extremely hard, but also smart. I would further tell someone considering a career in a company similar to Timberlane to always think like a customer and to have a relentless commitment to high quality in whatever you do. We are continuing to get smarter and more demanding as consumers and this is how it should be. This high standard will keep America thriving and competitive and if both companies and it’s employees remain committed to this, it is ultimately a win-win for everyone.”

Christina Thompson is a freelance writer living in Philadelphia. She reports on various topics such as: Social Media, Local Events, Entertainment, Food and Drink and more. Her work can be found at http://firstsendmedia.com/.