Spotlight on Dale Warren, Former Forklift Operator and Warehouse Manager, Current Trimmer and Bucket Operator, Lewis Tree Service
How does one go from operating a forklift in a warehouse to operating a bucket truck in the great outdoors?
We caught up with Dale Warren to learn how.
You used to operate forklifts in a warehouse, what was that like?
For the most part, it was good. I enjoyed working a fast-paced environment and operating the machines, but I felt trapped because I was always inside. I was there for five years, I started on the night shift but eventually made my way to the day shift and into a management position but regardless of if I was working days or nights, regardless if I was in an entry-level position or a management position, I was still stuck inside and still felt trapped.
When you started in the warehouse, did you see yourself there for the long haul?
At first, no, it was just a job to make ends meet but when I started on days in the management position, I received benefits and I started to see a future there but it came to an end when I had a falling out with management.
You left the warehouse due to management, how would you describe management at Lewis?
The management at Lewis is the complete opposite from the warehouse. When I was working in the warehouse, it was like everybody had an agenda. At Lewis, when you speak, you will be listened to. If you have an idea, management is excited to hear. Management never looks down on your or acts like they are better. A lot of management was in the same exact position as you when they started.
Was your transition from operating a forklift to operating a bucket difficult?
It was not that difficult because I was used to operating machinery when I was in the warehouse. I also had some experience with cutting firewood and clearing areas of land.
What advice would you give to others who are making the jump from a warehouse to vegetation management?
I would tell them that you are going to sweat. I do not care if it is 90 or 40 below, you will sweat. It is hard work, but you will love it, I love it. I would also tell them about the benefits and the opportunities that are available to move up at Lewis.
What do you love most about working for Lewis?
The camaraderie. I love the people that I work with. I would do anything for them, and I know they would do the same for me. They are family.
When you aren’t up in a bucket, what do you enjoy doing?
I have been doing a lot of yardwork lately and spending a lot of time in my vegetable garden. My wife and I planted beans, pumpkins, watermelons, spinach, kale. We also have a sunflower bed.
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Looking for a new career with opportunities to grow, solid pay, benefits, stock ownership, training, safety, working outside, a great culture, and finding success? Utility vegetation management is deemed an “essential workforce” by the U.S. government which is something in which we take immense pride!
Take a look at some of the other Lewis success stories profiled on our site and join our company.
Driven to succeed but worried about being in a dead-end job? Learn how a former residential tree worker found upward mobility, heightened safety, and pride as an essential worker at Lewis Tree Service. Click here.
Stuck inside an office all day? Worried about finding success in a “man’s world”? Read about how a former office worker is encouraging women to thrive at Lewis Tree Service. Click here.
Bored in your job? Want to try something different? Find out how a butcher found the right blend of training, learning, safety and success at Lewis Tree Service. Click here.
Tired of working two full-time jobs just to make ends meet? Learn how a former kitchen manager in the restaurant industry has found success and a long-term career without a college education at Lewis Tree Service. Click here.
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