While technology may be driving the company’s growth, there are certain service-based standbys that keep Lockridge’s contractor customers coming back. The company still provides donuts to customers once a week and they take cold water on deliveries on hot summer days.
To ensure prompt deliveries as his builder customers have taken contracts farther away from Lockridge stores, an investment in delivery trucks with mountable, portable forklifts has allowed Lockridge to send bigger loads farther distances with just one delivery driver.
With a customer base that is 70% contractor and 30% DIYer, Clint said the company’s ownership affiliation with Do it Best Corp. and Wheatbelt help provide the buying power to carry inventory that Lockridge’s rural customer base needs.
Installed sales are also helping to drive revenue for Lockridge. The Housh family offers installed sales to homeowners and builders alike and the installed sales business is growing. The key to growing that aspect of the business, Clint said, is to find a good employee to install the product and to maintain good relationships with his contractor customers so as not to compete with their services.
Trade shows, vendor demonstrations and in-store product training help keep Lockridge employees at the top of their game, as the small-town lumberyard increasingly becomes the go-to place for project advice.
Born into the industry himself, Clint said his ultimate goal is to transition the business to his own children. Before that happens, he sees steady growth through upgraded and expanded facilities and acquisition as opportunity allows.
While Clint is now company vice president, his father, Dale, is still very much involved in the business. Dale still oversees all four stores and he’s the company’s lumber and OSB purchaser. He dutifully watches the markets and tries to project prices. He’s passing that knowledge on to his sons.
“I don’t know if my dad will ever retire,” Clint said. “My mom would like him to take time off, but he loves it more than anything and he’s passed that love on to us. We put in more hours than most, but that’s a family business.”