Join Us for a Walk in Our Steel-Toed Shoes: Part 3
Over the past few months, we have taken you on the first part of our tour of PALFINGER North America, and we hope you have been enjoying the journey. The THIRD stop is our distribution arm’s headquarters in Tiffin, Ohio. This skilled team at PALFINGER USA does a little bit of everything from assembling our knuckle boom cranes, timber and refuse loaders, and PAL Pro mechanics trucks to servicing all of our products in addition to other manufacturer lifting solutions. Additionally, they oversee all PALFINGER-owned distribution and maintenance locations across the states, ensuring you get the same level of service at each location. We are excited to introduce you to some of these very talented individuals.
Knuckle Boom Cranes, Material Handling Cranes, Truck-Mounted Forklifts and Timber and Refuse Loaders
The Sales team is an integral cog in the PALFINGER machine as they are the front line to the customer and are whom they reach out to for any questions. We are pleased to introduce you to some of the brilliant and hardworking members of this team!
Michael "Texas Mike" Splettstosser—Director of Sales
Michael has been part of the PALFINGER family for the last four years and has brought with him a wealth of knowledge! As he has been in the crane and truck-mounted forklift industry for over 20 years, he was excited for a change and a new experience with PALFINGER. Each day he supports our Outside Sales team and ensures they have all the tools and the inventory to do their jobs. With this exciting side of the company, he has the unique opportunity to meet our customers and see how our products impact their day-to-day lives.
Some of his proudest personal moments at PALFINGER are converting former customers to our great series of products. As he has a lot of passion for what he does and believes in the products we sell, he is always excited to see the looks on their faces when they use our products for the first time. “Customers and the relationships are what build our business, and I have had the privilege to meet and work with customers from coast to coast,” Michael mentioned.
On a personal note, Michael spends his spare time enjoying life and spending time with his family doing all sorts of outdoor activities – he has been married for the last 36 years and is looking forward to the next 36.
He left this parting wisdom for new employees, "Be dedicated to your job and your workmanship. Take pride in the company and what you do for the company. Show your pride by being on time, taking the initiative, staying late when needed, and remember [that] everything we do affects the customer in some way. All of us are important to making things go well, getting jobs completed on time, and making the customer realize we are the best company to do business with. Hard work and dedication will be noticed and rewarded.”
Jose De Leon—National Application Specialist
Jose has been with PALFINGER for the last six years, and in that time, his role has grown into a more involved position. Not only does he get to spend time with our customers, but also now has the opportunity to be included in the engineering process. Given this advantage, he has brought a voice to his customers and ensured that we create products that most benefit the end-user. His goal is constantly to improve our offering and provide our customers with an optimal solution.
Some of the things that he cherishes the most are, “In my position, the autonomy to work as if it is your own business and the support from my boss.” PALFINGER allows him to own the customer journey and build that integral relationship. Each day what he accomplishes is something that he can own and develop.
As family is very important to Jose, many would be surprised to hear he is a grandfather. He firmly believes in family and advises new employees to prioritize their work-life balance, “Make time for family.”
Jason Smith—Arborist Equipment Sales
During Jason’s tenure, he has seen the company change and grow into the business it is today. When he first joined, he started as a draftsman, which evolved into an engineering role. Later, he was promoted to Purchasing, and after a few years of purchasing supplies, materials and equipment, a role in sales opened up, and Jason applied for it. He was accepted into the position and has been in the sales side of the business for the last 16 years.
As his role has evolved, he also has been allowed to develop parts of the knuckle boom line of products that focus on the tree care industry. During this time, he has been able to grow his customer and colleague friendships which he has gained throughout the country. Jason also enjoys the trade shows, “where we get together to discuss the products and hear how the PALFINGER products have improved how they do business through efficiency, safety and increased production.”
As Jason has been through many years with PALFINGER, he greatly understands its passion and dedication. “I would say that because of acquisitions and mergers, there are fewer and fewer companies that have stood the test of time. For PALFINGER to remain and continue to flourish after 90 years of business is quite impressive. I find the ability of PALFINGER as a company to adapt to the market's needs and stay relevant – driving new product sales, even after 90 years in business, to be quite remarkable,” Jason mentioned.
Jason understands that success does not come from one but a team. “I truly believe company success takes a team. I am no more important to the success of this company than an employee who is wiring the package builds. Without that person, I have nothing to sell and conversely, without me selling the product, that person has nothing to build. We are all in this together, and in my opinion, no employee is any more important to the process than any other,” Jason mentioned.
Mike Isaman—Application Specialist
In the year and a half that Mike has been part of the PALFINGER family, he has expanded his horizon and learned new industries and applications. He has quite a bit of experience in the industry and has always admired PALFINGER. Each day he enjoys what he does for his customers. As knowledge is key for Mike, he has this advice for new employees, “Get to know your fellow employees and ask and use their knowledge to aid and assist you in your daily duties.” One of his proudest moments was delivering one of our GLS 55 4-way truck-mounted forklifts to one of his customers and getting a chance to see the look on their faces. Like many at PALFINGER, he admires the people, the products and how we work together as a team to serve the customer best.
Bonus Fact: He has worked as a shopping mall Santa Claus and was once a deckhand on an Alaskan fishing charter at a remote fishing lodge.
Masters at Work
PAL Pro Team
• 3 Mechanics
• 1 Mechanic/Welder
• 1 Team Lead
While Council Bluffs is where the crane bodies and service cranes are manufactured or assembled, we rely on our distributors to upfit our products onto the chassis. This is where PALFINGER USA comes in to customize the finished lifting and service solutions. Meet the PAL Pro Installation team in Tiffin – since taking on the installation aspect, these guys have increased productivity in their department each quarter.
Wes speaks to the philosophy that you can excel and reach your goals with hard work and determination. He came to PALFINGER five years ago, has risen through the ranks, and is now the Team Leader and Senior Technician for the PAL Pro mechanics’ truck team. The team that they have built is like a little family. They all work very well together and are always there to help each other – they truly define what it means to be a team. This feeling exists not only in their team but in the greater Tiffin facility. Wes enjoys where he works because the Tiffin location is like a big family that cares about its employees.
Many might be surprised to know that Wes was active in the US Navy and was an Aircraft Frame and Hydraulic Mechanic. He enjoys the challenges he now faces in his job as they help further develop his career. Wes said about PALFINGER, “This is a great place to work. If you have a good attitude and motivation and are willing to put in the time to learn, you can have a good career at P[ALFINGER] USA.”
While Andrew has not been with PALFINGER long, he is PALFINGER strong! He recently completed his training, and one of his proudest moments thus far has been being allowed to train the team's newest member. He, like Wes, really enjoys the family atmosphere and the work he gets a chance to do every day. Andrew has this advice for new employees, “Come to work with a good attitude and be a team player.” With that advice, how can you go wrong?
In his free time, Andrew has a homestead with fresh organic food! So, if you need any organic growing advice, be sure to reach out to him.
As we mentioned, there is a fresh face on the PAL Pro team; enter Rhys Bello Tiffin’s youngest employee, both in age and tenure. Rhys is no stranger to PALFINGER as he was referred by a family member. He is currently in training and enjoys absorbing information and learning how to build the mechanics’ trucks. One of his favorite things so far is learning and working hands-on in a very safe place. As he has been working, he has picked up this sage advice, “Pay attention to details because the small things matter.”
It was 16 years ago when Mike responded in person to a newspaper ad to join Team PALFINGER. Over the years, he has been a jack of all trades and has filled various roles. He currently rests his hat in the PAL Pro mechanics’ truck department. He takes great pride in his work and is always proud of each truck they produce with zero issues. “Don’t be afraid to ask questions” is the advice that Mike leaves any employee that has recently joined the company.
Dustin has been with PALFINGER for a decade and, during his tenure, has worked in various areas. He had previously been in fabrication and is now a welder and production mechanic for the PAL Pro team. Like the rest of his colleagues, he enjoys working with everyone in Tiffin and appreciates his individual team. He mentioned that if you “work hard, be honest and treat people well. It will come back to you.”
In his spare time, Dustin is an animal lover – he raises animals and shows them at the local fairs!
Tiffin: Relationship is Key
Palfinger USA is known for developing innovative solutions to customers' material handling problems. They work closely with their customers to provide equipment ideally suited for the job from project inception to delivery. Their customers range from owner-operators with one truck to fleets with hundreds of trucks in the field.
They work closely with OEM chassis manufacturers to ensure that the solutions they provide are fully integrated with the proper chassis to maximize the safety and productivity of the complete package. In addition, Palfinger USA works closely with vocational truck dealers to develop specialized solutions for their customers.