Warren Cat Doubles in Size, Sticks With Singular Philosophy

Mon October 07, 2002 - West Edition
CEG




They say the more things change, the more they stay the same.

That adage has held particularly true for Warren Cat, which has held on to its traditional operating philosophy even as its has recently undergone a major expansion.

On April 1, Warren purchased the assets of Darr Equipment, which included 11 Texas counties and all of Oklahoma.

Needless to say, such an acquisition entailed major changes. It meant that Warren’s territory doubled in square miles, and its staff doubled from 375 employees to about 750.

As a result of the expansion, Warren’s Texas locations now include Abilene, Amarillo, Dalhart, Lubbock, Odessa, Midland, San Angelo and Wichita Falls.

In Oklahoma, Warren has operations in Ardmore, Elk City, Enid, Guymon, Oklahoma City, Poteau and Tulsa.

Warren waited about three months after purchasing Darr before holding official grand opening ceremonies in the new locations this summer. The idea was to do some cleanup of the new facilities before opening them to customers, and to give employees time to acclimate to the transition.

That level of consideration for employees exemplifies Warren’s rather unusual operating philosophy.

“Warren Cat was built not on the more usual ’the customer comes first’ attitude, but on ’employees come first,” said Jim Nelson, Warren Cat’s dealer principal.

The company believes that treating employees well leads to the building of a dedicated staff that will ultimately give customers first-rate service.

“Powered by service” is the company motto.

Once employees had settled in, and it came time to finally hold grand openings in the new locations, Warren held approximately 15 of the celebrations in as many days.

In all, more than 3,800 customers attended the events, with the largest being the finale attended by more than 700 people in Oklahoma City.

The grand openings typically included lunch, product demonstrations, facility tours and prize giveaways.

The capping event included the grand prize giveaway of a 4WD utility mule, which went to Gary Sewell of Sewell Construction in Oklahoma City.

Now that the changeover to its expanded territory is well underway, Warren is focused on enhancing its name recognition, and with making customers more aware of what it has to offer.

Despite all the adjustments that accompany a major acquisition, Nelson said the one thing that won’t change is Warren’s core philosophy. “If anything, we’re holding even more fast to that than ever,” he said.

For more information, call 866-2-WARREN or visit www.warrencat.com.