“People are definitely a company’s greatest asset. It doesn’t make any difference whether the product is cars or cosmetics. A company is only as good as the people it keeps.”— Mary Kay Ash
The words of Mary Kay Ash certainly ring true here at Eminence Speaker. The existence of Eminence, from its founding to its future, can be accredited to the caliber of men and women who have called themselves “Eminence Speaker”. Indeed, we are Eminence! Behind the most trusted name in the audio industry lies an eclectic group of people with personal stories. Without these people, we would never be who we are.
This month’s “We Are Eminence” employee spotlight shines on Teresa Rucker. Teresa currently works in our Voice Coil Department. Eminence Speaker has been around since 1966 and for 23 of those 46 years, Teresa Rucker has been faithfully building our reputation one voice coil at a time. Her supervisor, Michelle Gambrel speaks of Teresa this way:
“Teresa is very passionate about everything she does. She is very loyal to Eminence Speaker, her friends, her church, and her family. She takes pride in her work and has a lot of knowledge about her job and the company as a whole. She tries her best and gives her all. It is a pleasure to work with her. Teresa is what Eminence Speaker is all about.”
I recently sat down with Teresa for an interview about her experience here at Eminence.
JM: How many years have you been employed here at Eminence?
TR: I’ve been here for 23 years this coming May. I worked for Ashland Oil for 17 years and then worked at Brunswick for 7 years after that. My son was 5 years old when I started here and he’s 27 now. Time flies!
JM: How did you come to be an Eminence Employee?
TR: My time at Brunswick had ended and I really needed a job. Being a single parent, the opportunity at Eminence was a Godsend. Sue Kindred was the supervisor in the Voice Coil Department at the time and she gave a good recommendation for me. I came in for the interview and they hired me on the spot. They told me we would be working a lot of overtime and we did. We were working 60 hour weeks then, sometimes in 12 hour shifts.
JM: Who trained you in your department?
TR: Most of my training came from Sue Kindred and Nancy Simpson.
JM: Have you worked in any other areas in the plant or just the Voice Coil Department?
TR: I’ve worked primarily in the Voice Coil Department but have done other jobs as well. I’ve operated presses in the press room, worked on the assembly line, compression driver line, Buttkicker department…..a little bit of everywhere. If you’ve been here for a while you will eventually do a little of everything.
JM: What are some changes that you have seen happen at Eminence over the years that have made things better?
TR: The production lines have been streamlined. We have a lot more people working them now than when I started but they have been streamlined quite a bit.
JM: What keeps you here as an employee rather than working somewhere else?
TR: The economy is pretty bad these days. Having the insurance plan that we do is a big deal. The benefits are a big deal. Insurance can be so expensive.
JM: What is your favorite memory of the time you have spent at Eminence so far?
TR: We used to have company picnics and parties that involved the whole family. I really liked that, especially Christmas time. Christmas is about the kids and I really enjoyed when we did things that we could bring our families with us. My son always enjoyed that. I also enjoy the meals we have within our department. The family atmosphere created good memories. It has been good getting to know the Gault family, too. Bob was a military man but a very fair man. He expected you to produce great work but genuinely cared about you. I’ve also enjoyed getting to know Rob and his mother for all these years.
JM: If you could tell the world one thing about Eminence, what would it be?
TR: I would tell them that we strive for perfection in what we do. We aren’t always perfect but we strive for that. If I wouldn’t buy it myself, I wouldn’t allow it to go past my station. We want quality to be the top priority.
JM: Any final comments for our readers or maybe even comments for the younger generation of workers coming in?
TR: For the younger generation I would say, “Work on the quality first and the quantity will come. This is a good place to work if you are willing to work. There is a job here to do if you are willing to do the job.”
JM: Thanks for your time, Teresa.
Josh Martin is Eminence’s Technology Sales Manager and has been with the company for 6 years.