Meet the Team: James Byrd

You’ve seen him around town behind the wheel of our fancy, Big Orange ‘S’ Business Products trucks, or perhaps he knows you by first name and greets you with a smile and a case of copy paper each week- our Strickland Star, James Byrd let me ride along on his morning route and here’s what I’ve found:

EM: Thanks for letting me ride along, James; I love the mornings. You’ve been a Business Products delivery driver here at Strickland for a little over 2 years- where and who were you before you joined the company?

JB: My wife and I have three children- the two younger play softball and the older is in college. My very first job was at a McDonald’s and I’ve been in the delivery driving business for the past 12 1/2 years. When I’m not driving, I enjoy coaching my girls and being a handyman around the house.

EM: Glad to hear you’re a family man. My favorite part of being with family is the food. Do you have a favorite home-cooked meal?

JB: Baked chicken, chicken and dressing, macaroni cheese, and corn bread.

EM: You’re stranded on a desert island. You have one companion and three items; who and what are they?

JB: Sandra Bullock, cooking pot, fire starter, and machete

EM: You said Sandra Bullock but you meant your wife, right?

JB: No

EM: Although I suspect you’ll be doing all four soon, which would you rather do: wash dishes, mow the lawn, clean the bathroom or vacuum the house?

JB: Mow the lawn

EM: What else do you want the world to know about you, James?

JB: My family motivates me to work hard and I don’t sing karaoke, although I do prefer the Rolling Stones over the Beatles. I like to get out of Alabama on family vacations, and learning a different language and being debt free are two items on my bucket list.

To ride on a morning business products route you have to be at the Strickland warehouse at 6:30am. I’ve been described as a bit of a morning grouch more than once in my life, but I can say James’ smile and genuine love of his job are infectious and leave little wonder in my mind as to why he’s our Strickland Star. We’re lucky to have you, James!

Meet the Team – Kara Crook

Meet Kara! Our newest, wonderful sales representative based out of our location down south: Mobile. This lady has been with us for one year and one week, and is constantly driving all over the coast and the panhandle of Florida searching for opportunities and solutions to help her customers’ businesses run efficiently.

I was able to catch up with our youngster and pick her brain about what in the world she did before working for Strickland and what it means to bring innovative, fresh thinking to a billion year old paper house.

EM: So Kara, I heard you have a family. Would you bring them with you if you were stranded on a middle-of-nowhere island?

Kara: No. Although my family is very close and we love spending time at the beach, their competitive card games would be the end of me. I’d bring my dog Bear as a companion, a fire starter kit, an umbrella and a boat.

EM: Boats! Yes. You recently graduated from the University of South Alabama, way to go! How does it feel being an adult and knowing that your mom will never iron your clothes again?

Kara: No one irons anymore, that’s why the dryer was invented. I will miss eating her spaghetti often.

EM: I’ve heard that people around your age think they know everything. Is there anything you don’t know and would like to learn?

Kara: Learning a new language would be nice. I’d like to learn Italian so I could travel there and be able to communicate easily with the locals.

EM: I bet they’ll teach you to make spaghetti- if you ask nicely in Italian. I heard you singing in the car the other day and will skip the question about having a favorite karaoke song, as I’m not sure if they’d allow you on stage. Do you prefer the Beatles or the Rolling Stones?

Kara: Stones

EM: Hm. I’ve enjoyed having a coworker who brings innovative, fresh ideas to this industry. Besides confusing the older people with Excel functions, what motivates you to work hard?

Kara: Watching my name climb the sales charts has been inspiring, but helping new customers set up programs that will truly benefit them keeps me in the game.

Thanks for keeping us young, Kara!