Williams and White is a Vancouver-based machine and equipment manufacturing shop founded in 1957. Over 50 years later, it was a family business in transition from the second generation to the third, with brothers Matt and Justin Williams taking control. Matt had been working in operations and estimating for over a decade and Justin had recently taken on a sales role in the company after completing his Engineering degree at UBC. The business had largely been built around the forestry industry, selling saw guides to BC’s lumber mills.
At the time of the Benchmarking, the forestry industry was decimated by the pine beetle and the global economy was suffering. While Con (the father) did not want to continue his day to day involvement in the business, he felt it necessary to stay and help shepherd the business through these difficult times. Significant hurdles still needed to be overcome. The company’s goals included:
- Developing and implementing a succession plan.
- Diversifying their product offering into automation.
- Strengthening the leadership skills of the new owners and defining their respective roles.
- Developing a formalized sales process and training US-based representatives.
Bellrock worked with the family for 3 months. In that time we:
- Facilitated strategic planning including developing a mission statement, tactical plans, and timelines for implementation.
- Designed, documented and trained the Williams and White Sales Process.
- Implemented a variety of financial systems including cash flow forecasting, AR controls and budgeting.
- Completed an organizational redesign that facilitated the father’s exit from the business and division of labour for the two sons.
Results – Two Years Later
- Revenue increased by 50%.
- The brothers took full responsibility for the company’s operation, embracing their roles and the division of labour.
- Robotic Automation grew from 10% to 30% of top-line revenue.
- Williams and White became sales & marketing experts – their open house alone attracted 200+ industry people visiting in one day. One vendor commented: “This was the best trade show I’ve attended in 10 years.”
Results – Four Years Later – Awards
- Innovator of the Year, 2013
- Best Employer, 2013 & 2012
- Small Business of the Year, 2012
- Best Company, 2012