WICHITA, KAN. – Viega LLC will welcome Vice President of Supply Chain Operations Robert Boots in a new position, COO in October. With 22 years of experience in plumbing manufacturing and logistics, Robert Boots has worked in every aspect of a supply chain, from extrusion to logistics and more.
“I actually love coming to work every day, not just because of my role,” Boots said. “I’ve always loved it. I am part of a team that is not content with mediocrity or the status quo. Even when we think we’re at the top, we find another mountain to climb. That’s what makes it so rewarding.”
Boots managed the Vanguard PEX manufacturing plant in South Carolina from the time he was 28 and moved to McPherson, KS, when the South Carolina plant closed in 2001. In 2001, he became the plant manager at the McPherson facility. In 2009, Boots became Viega’s Vice President of Supply Chain Operations, which included many departments such as Manufacturing, Purchasing, Logistics and Quality Assurance. In October 2013, Boots will become Viega’s new COO.
“In order to be a great leader you also have to be a great follower,” Boots said. “My role is to help Dave Garlow succeed as the CEO of Viega LLC and to help Viega LLC grow. I respect him very much and I’m looking forward to working with him.”
Boots views his position as a vehicle to remove obstacles and provide his team with the tools and resources they need to do their jobs. “I care very much for my team,” he said. “I don’t like to say I have people working for me. I like to say I have people who work with me. We’re all in this together. If you take care of the people, the processes will take care of themselves. You can have the best processes in the world but if you don’t have engaged people implementing them you won’t get anywhere.”
Of all the qualities that matter to Boots, honesty and integrity top the list. “I want people to know that I always try to do the right thing,” Boots said. “And the right thing is the right thing no matter if it’s for the customers, for the company or for the industry. I will always fight for what’s right and will always try to set the example by doing the right thing myself.”
Boots believes that the industry needs to be dedicated to quality products and solutions and he feels that Viega LLC is committed to quality, not just error-free products but safe products. Viega is a company committed to customer service, innovative solutions and continuous improvement.
“We’re not comfortable sitting back,” Boots said. “We’re committed to always raising the bar, internally and externally in the industry. It’s not always easy or cheap but it’s the right thing to do. We need to be totally focused on quality. That’s Viega. We do things right.”
Boots has a positive outlook on the future of Viega LLC for many reasons, not the least of which is his relationship with new CEO and president, Dave Garlow. “Dave and I are very much in sync. We’re a great complement to each other and I will help him in whatever way he deems appropriate to help make us a winning company,” Boots said. “I think best days are yet to come. That’s the beauty of this company: we’re always moving forward.”