The North-American Association of Uniform Manufacturers and Distributors (NAUMD) Rick Levine, host of The Uniformer Podcast, discusses the passion behind GALLS® new CEO Mike Fadden’s drive to build a company focused on customer service.
Lexington, Ken. (May 2021) – Mike Fadden, CEO of GALLS, LLC®, the leading distributor of uniforms and equipment to public safety agencies, and private label products, joins Rick Levine on the NAUMD podcast The Uniformer on Thursday, May 26, 2021. The Uniformer is a podcast devoted to the companies, teams, and individuals who provide the uniforms, image apparel, and equipment worn by tens of millions of workers across North America.
Nine months into his job as CEO of GALLS, Fadden states he is focused on two things: building a culture that is relentlessly focused on the customer, and second, making GALLS a premier employment destination. “We want to make GALLS the kind of company where when people say, ‘I work for GALLS,’ that they are proud, and that they can puff out their chest a little. When our sales force hits the market, they do with a bit of swagger, because they know they work for the best company in the industry.”
Turning GALLS into an employment destination is a mission already underway at the company. Foremost, as Fadden points out, working at GALLS can be considered a “noble cause.” By serving first responders who are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice and take an oath to protect our communities, GALLS employees are obligated to provide their customers with the best possible service, because they earn it every day. As Fadden added, “Our calling is summed up in our mission statement, Proud to Serve Those Who Serve.”
Additionally, Fadden points out the company is active in philanthropy. From sponsoring local community events for first responders to their recent partnership with Fund the First, the nation’s leading verified crowdfunding platform for first responders, military, and medical professionals, to a new major partnership with a charity to be announced in the coming weeks.
Fadden says GALLS is also committed to investing in its employees through a variety of programs from education, training, and incentives to not only attract quality employees, but to help employees build their careers at GALLS.
When asked what he thought the next few years looked like for him and the company, Fadden replied that they are already developing and implementing strategies. An example he used was investing the entire IT budget in five projects that would leverage technology to make the customer experience better. He sees GALLS continuing its growth strategy through a three-pronged approach; first, through strategic and opportunistic acquisitions. The second approach is to increase current customer purchases through industry-leading technologies that provide the customer with a better, faster, smarter experience. And the third approach is to attract new customers by having an outstanding reputation in the industry for service.
Fadden discussed how he sees his executive team solely to support his sales team. With over 80 stores and multiple agencies, the single customer and smaller agency are still more likely to encounter GALLS through its online presence. Mike and his team have been working on reducing the time between when a uniform order comes in to when it goes out the door to no more than three days, a remarkable feat when considering the uniforms are individually decorated.
Wrapping up the 42-minute conversation, Levine asks Fadden what he thinks of today’s challenges for our first responder communities and what it might mean for the community’s future. Fadden responds by saying GALLS is already answering those challenges. In regards to budget constraints, now and possibly in the future, GALLS has created a program that demonstrates how an agency can save money and with that extra money, be able to afford life-saving protection equipment such as body armor and helmets. With vendor partners, all working to keep the rising prices at a minimum, GALLS can help agencies of any size, with procurement processes. Fadden is also committed to making all of the GALLS branch stores a safe, respectful environment for first responders, where they can come in and receive recognition and be treated with dignity.
In a final reflection on the uniform industry, his job as CEO of GALLS and the first responder community, Fadden remains laser-focused on the people who wear the uniform and admits that his best days at work are when he is out with his employees.
Listen to the full podcast at NAUMD The Uniformer.
Lexington, Kentucky-based GALLS, LLC® is “Proud to Serve America’s Public Safety Professionals.” Together with its subsidiaries, GALLS represent the largest distributor of uniform and equipment to public safety personnel, including police, fire, EMS, private security, corrections, federal/military, and postal. Each year, more than one million men and women in the public safety, postal, and public transportation industries depend on GALLS for their essential and robust selection of equipment and apparel, ranging from customized uniforms, sunglasses, and boots/shoes to body armor, handcuffs, medical kits, and light bars. Founded in 1967, GALLS is a trusted resource for fast, convenient, and reliable public safety equipment, supplies, and gear. GALLS is headquartered in Lexington, KY, and boasts an associate team of 1500-plus based throughout the United States that services customers through an award-winning national catalog, convenient eCommerce site, more than 125 dedicated sales reps, 80 locations, and the eQuip agency online solution. Learn more at www.galls.com.
About the North-American Association of Uniform Manufacturers and Distributors (NAUMD):
The NAUMD was founded in 1932. This association is a community for the uniform, public safety equipment, and image apparel industry. It is composed of manufacturers, distributors, and associated companies that have a common bond in the future of our industry. The North American Association of Uniform Manufacturers and Distributors is committed to building a community of industry leaders that foster strategic relationships, explore new ideas that positively impact business. www.naumd.com