Meet Hascall’s featured employee Chris VanWingerden.
How long have you been an employee?
I have been with Hascall Steel Company for over 20 years!
What is your role in the organization?
I began as an accounts payable clerk and then took over the accounting team. Soon thereafter, we blended the accounting and inventory control teams into a single unit. One of the best things to happen to me was to be involved in the design and development team for our quality system, which years ago was to the QS-9000 standard. That team gave me access to all the parts of the Hascall Steel operation. I was able to identify “best practices” within our workforce, and document them in policies/procedures/and work instructions. I had the added benefit of teaching different shifts our new standards.
As we absorbed other steel service centers, I became the spokesperson bringing Hascall culture to new teams in Allegan, Detroit, and Nashville TN. Over the Years I grew into General Manager, Vice President, and I took over the Presidency of Hascall Steel about 3 years ago. My role of Presidency is full of variety.
First and foremost, I am a champion for Hascall Steel. I like to build bridges within our organization, finding improvements and getting the most out of our teams. My direct areas of responsibility cover accounting, inventory control, finance, IT, safety, quality, insurances, and benefits, human resources, and production control. I work closely with our Vice President and Materials Director on the sales and purchasing initiatives. Finally, I work closest with our CEO on vision and execution for the overall leadership of the company.
What do Hascall Steel’s Core Values mean to you?
Our core values are guideposts for our behavior. In the forming and creating of these concepts, we took a hard look at who we ALREADY were, as well as the best parts of our character that we wanted to promote, both internally and externally.
- Dignity & Respect
- Culture (Community and Expertise)
What do you like to do when you aren’t at work?
When I’m not at work, you will find me with my family or flying my airplane. I’ve been a pilot for over 12 years and it still thrills me to plan a flight and navigate in complicated airspace. I really like to increase my flying skills, especially in challenging weather. Someday I’d like to fly out west, in the mountains and deserts.
What is your favorite part of working here?
My favorite part of working here is the sense of pride and accomplishment of a job well done, and then the challenge of the next opportunity or circumstance that needs my attention. There is never a dull moment, and there is ample space for each of us to be ourselves and give for our mutual benefit. We’ve often described Hascall Steel like an onion, where we can peel away layers and develop an up and coming employee, all the while growing the organization, and changing with the times.
I have to give the most credit for my success to the owner Dag Hascall. Over all these 20 years he has supported me, and allowed me to try things inside the company. It’s not often that a strong leader can set aside their “way of doing things” and let their team members put their fingerprint on projects.