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You Said It: Eric Foust, president of Custom Forest Products, Spartanburg, S.C.
Eric Foust, president of Custom Forest Products, answers questions from the Pallet Enterprise about working in the industry.

By Staff
Date Posted: 2/1/2013

Pallet Enterprise: What is the hardest challenge your company faces right now?

Foust: Deciding how to grow with respect to the Obamacare law is a great challenge.† We have the ability to stay below the 50-person threshold and find it very difficult to see how increasing our payroll is justified with the tight margins in our industry.

Pallet Enterprise: What is the best piece of business advice that you have ever received?

Foust: Join C12 Group.† It is a Christian CEO group that meets monthly. A group of 12 owners from diverse industries discuss improving their businesses for maximum spiritual and economic impact.† I joined in 2008, and it is the best thing I ever did for Custom Forest Products.† We are not the same company, and I am not the same leader.†

Pallet Enterprise: What is the best part of working in this industry?

Foust: Interacting with diverse groups of people.† The person that cuts the lumber and builds the pallet has a different life experience than the business owner or buyer that purchases them.†Itís helpful for me to keep my focus balanced.

Pallet Enterprise: If you could change any business decision that you have made in the past, what would you do differently and why?

Foust: Not paying attention to all types of waste as closely as needed.† We started to implement Lean Manufacturing in 2012, and it has been a revelation to us. Lean Manufacturing deals with the seven major wastes in business such as overproduction, waiting and transportation.†The customer doesnít pay us for those wastes.† We are focusing on them, and it has made work simpler and the bottom line better.

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