The 2014 Family Business Awards: Transformation Award

| FROM THE PRINT EDITION |
 
 

WINNER

Telect

Liberty Lake

Telect, a manufacturer of telecommunications equipment, has had to remake itself to match the dramatic restructuring of its industry. After 17 years of growth, the collapse of the telecom market, the economic downturn and the shift from wireline to wireless technology resulted in a 70 percent drop in revenue in 24 months; Telect’s flagship product plummeted from generating 75 percent of revenue to 15 percent. Telect fought back with new products, such as tools for fiber-optic network installation. The company expects to hit $60 million in revenue this year. President and CEO Wayne Williams wants to keep the momentum going with a recently completed intensive strategic review. Family members who work at Telect were part of the review, which was then presented to the board of directors and other family members. “I like simplicity,” says Williams. “My wife often comments on my ‘lean manufacturing’ approach to everything because, with everything I see, I try to ‘lean it out’ — from the lines at Disneyland to the design of a product to the way approvals and controls happen within our business. At Telect, we aren’t perfect, but we strive for excellence. It is in the entrepreneurial DNA of my family to try to clean things up, create opportunity and work hard for something you believe in.” 

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