MAP Client Spotlight:Totten Tubes
In 1955 Marvin Totten, a steel salesman, asked a family member for a $25,000 loan to achieve his entrepreneurial dreams. Totten Tubes was born in South Central Los Angeles. The chain of command has remained in the Totten Family ever since, now led by Paul Totten and Greg Totten, who are Co-Presidents of the company. The drive to meet their customers’ every tubing need instilled by their grandfather is still evident today, as Totten Tubes provides the largest selection of tube and pipe products to market and are recognized as innovators in their field.
In a Q&A with Paul and Greg, they discuss the intricacies of family business and what it takes to advance a legacy.
Q: What has been the biggest challenge as the leaders of Totten Tubes during COVID-19?
A: Deemed an essential business, we didn’t have any shutdown through the pandemic. The challenge was keeping current on the ever-changing protocol for our team who couldn’t work remotely. Initially there weren’t many resources in place or direction, so we had to figure it out day-by-day to keep our team safe and working.
Q: For the employees whose work environment did change by moving to remote, how did you manage that?
A: Luckily, we were making modernizations before COVID-19 hit that helped with the transition. We had moved to VoIP (Voice-over Internet Protocol) and had already equipped our outside salespeople with tablets and laptops, so the technology was already in place and we didn’t have a lapse in productivity due to a learning curve.
Q: What has been the benefit of working with MAP – both pre-COVID and now?
A: MAP has helped us create alignment around goals and find the gaps in our business. We’ve learned to measure things that we hadn’t even considered before, which has driven business results. Now we’re constantly thinking in terms of what can and cannot be measured… it’s really become embedded in our brains and business.
Q: What advice would you offer to another CEO of a family-owned business?
A: In terms of succession planning, remember that it is ever-changing and you must continually engage and adapt in the process. Even if you’re not planning to sell the company, operate as if you are.
Developing a team takes focus. Always be on the hunt for top talent and seek outside help and council sooner than later.
The family business dynamic can be challenging, but it’s also incredibly rewarding. Every family-owned company deserves to be the best they can be, so find the right resources that can help pave your way to success.
Are you ready to take your business to the level by aligning goals to measurable results? The MAP Management System’s key benefits include:
• Developing a business plan that serves as a roadmap of where your company is going, and helps you course correct when necessary
• Improving productivity and profitability
• Identifying your organization's goals that align to key strategies
• Driving execution and accountability
• Improving leadership effectiveness through executive coaching
• Creating focus, alignment and accountability