Rogers Group at 100
Safety: Priority #1 . . . always
Even before hard hats were required, Ralph Rogers made them available to all employees on construction sites and quarries. Today, safety is cultivated within the DNA of every manager, supervisor, laborer, and administrator.
When former CEO Frank Warren retired, he said that the accomplishment he was most proud of was the company’s safety improvements during his tenure. “I believe that as important as being the best in all these other categories is, and as ‘feel good’ as that is, we have an ethical and moral responsibility to employees of the company to provide them with a safe working environment and to demand that they abide by safe daily practices.”
“For decades, one of RGI’s core values has been ‘placing the highest value on people,’ and our constant focus on safety is based on this core principle” says current RGI President and CEO Jerry Geraghty. “Throughout the industry, Rogers Group is known as a leader in safety. After all, we have to do whatever we can to protect our greatest asset, our people.”
Rogers Group’s safety efforts have not gone unnoticed by its trade associations. They have received numerous safety awards from various trade organizations, including the National Asphalt Pavement Association, the American Road & Transportation Builders Association, and the National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association.
Commitment to core principles
There may be changes, challenges, and surprises in coming years, but there are also staples about Rogers Group that won’t change. According to RGI leadership, these principles define its core values: unwavering integrity, excellence in every undertaking, and placing the highest value on people.
“We have to make sure that some things, such as being involved in the community, are being done,” says Ben L. Rechter, son of Ben R. Rechter and RGI board member. “We take a lot of pride in the way our facilities look. We, as a family, have to make sure that there are no shortcuts taken just to make money.”
And no shortcuts are taken with people either. “Going forward, it’s not about reinventing the wheel,” says Dave Rechter, son of Rick Rechter, who serves on the RGI board and as vice president of Eastern Tennessee operations. “It’s treating people with dignity and respect. When you really get down to Rogers Group and its core, it is the employees. We’ve had some wonderful CEOs and other leaders over the years who have given us some great direction. But it comes down to the everyday execution. Some of the best and most successful ideas have come from employees on a paving crew or at a quarry. That’s who we are.”
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