In late December 2012, Kevin Knuckley and Koy Kelley had been general managers at Witch Equipment Co. Inc. for about three years. That is when they became the majority owners of the now third-generation family business, where “family” is still a meaningful word that is prevalent throughout the organization.
Witch Equipment was founded in 1960 by Gifford Glover, Kevin’s grandfather, and has a long tradition as a family-owned business. In fact, Kevin’s father, Paul Knuckley, currently owns Ditch Witch of East Texas in Tyler. Larry Glover, Kevin’s uncle and Koy’s father-in-law, is still very active in the business as well.
In order to improve the customer and employee experience at their locations in Fort Worth and Waco/Hewitt, the newest owners’ primary focus is to upgrade current facilities.
To better serve its customers, Witch Equipment Company, has recently undergone quite a transformation. In the past few years, the entire sales team has turned over, and a new service and rental manager has been installed.
“Due to the fact that Paul Knuckley and Larry Glover are responsible for hiring some of our long-tenured teammates and previous employees, the respect and loyalty that they earned made it imperative that Koy and I provide strong leadership and bring on people that shared our historical values and future vision,” said Knuckley. “We believe that was key in gaining the same respect and loyalty amongst everyone in our organization — veterans and rookies alike.”
One former salesman from Ft. Worth is now manager/salesman of the company’s Waco location. Also, two long-tenured “teammates” retired. This gives both locations a completely new look, when it comes to sales staff.
Rick Stiffler joined the team four years ago and has made a significant impact on the business as a top producer. He has provided tremendous leadership skills amongst his team and the organization, according to Knuckley. He covers the Dallas and South Dallas area.
Tim Scott took over the Waco territory when Billy Lawson retired after more than 35 years.
“Billy had many great relationships and was firmly established in that area,” Knuckley said. “After three years, Tim is doing a great job of maintaining and building relationships, while gaining market share in central Texas.”
Scott’s “new” customers will appreciate his extensive knowledge of equipment and the industry.
Mike Bearden has been with the company for three years. He transitioned into the territory that was covered by Tim Scott, running from Fort Worth to Comanche and Eastland.
“Mike mirrors the relationship skills that customers in that area have enjoyed with Tim in previous years,” said Knuckley.
Chris Taylor has been covering the north and east Dallas territory for about a year. He follows the “family tradition” at Witch Equipment Co., in that he is Rick Stiffler’s brother-in-law.
“Chris is a hard worker, while carrying a friendly and positive disposition,” said Knuckley.
Ryan Thomas was hired in May, and has been covering the area of North Ft. Worth to Gainesville and Vernon.
“He has already impressed his coworkers and customers with his personality and experience in underground construction,” Knuckley said.
Wesley Dukes is the new face of the service and rental department in Fort Worth.
“He has provided higher utilization of Rental Equipment, and improved our CSI Ratings by doing whatever it takes for the customer,” said Knuckley.
Making sure customers feel valued is an important standard at Witch Equipment.
“Service has been a constant focal point from day one, but the industry has become more demanding, and quite honestly, we had some things to learn on the way to upping our game,” Knuckley said. “I’m proud of where we are now — providing top-level service and reducing downtime for our customers.”
The company has adopted a “Lose No Deal” approach, which, according to Knuckley, is more than just about price. It also means being able to support the product and the customer after the sale.
“Although we have had the benefit of a great foundation and core principles that were laid down by my grandfather, father, and uncle, many of these changes came via new management/ownership and new talent in sales and service in recent years,” said Knuckley.
For more information call 888/251-4054 or visit http://www.witchequipment.net/.
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