As we mark the 20th anniversary of the LP® SmartSide® brand, LP salutes another employee that has contributed to our success for the past two decades.
Paying It Forward
Mike Brandt was recently promoted to Plant Quality Manager at the Two Harbors mill. In fact, promotions are something Mike has made a habit of during his career at LP. “I started right out of high school back in 1991 as a temporary laborer,” he explains. “Over the years, I’ve kept working my way up the ladder. LP has been good about promoting me and I want to pay it forward.” Prior to his latest position, Mike worked as a shift supervisor and quality supervisor for 15 years. He has worked in every area of the mill over the course of his career.
As Plant Quality Manager, Mike oversees the Quality Control department, the team which ensures the consistency of all engineered wood siding options manufactured at Two Harbors. He works with APA – The Engineered Wood Association on compliance to make sure products meet both APA and LP specifications. He oversees all Quality programs and helps promote Safety and Environmental programs for employees at the mill. He’s also in charge of budgeting for the department for all capital improvement projects.
‘The People and the Culture’
Mike enjoys the people and the work culture at LP. “We’ve got a really good group of employees and managers,” he says. “We work well together and we watch out for each other. We know we make a great product and we do it safely. People are coming to work, taking pride in what they do and the products they make, and no one is getting hurt.”
For Mike, this emphasis on safety is what sets LP apart from other companies. “Nobody wants to get hurt at work, so we make sure everyone stays safe through good safety programs.” He notes the dramatic upshift in safety programs over the past two decades. “I’m not saying there weren’t programs in place, they just weren’t as robust as they are now. It’s been taken to a whole new level compared to 20 years ago.”
Looking to the Future
In the future, Mike looks forward to continuing to make positive contributions to LP as the company expands. He would like to continue helping with the OSB-to-SmartSide conversion at other mills. Eventually, he would like to transition to a Production Superintendent or Regional Quality Manager position. “It sounds cheesy, but I love my job and LP has been really good to me over the years. I’ll help out in any way I can.”
Mike also notes that his love of the LP brand isn’t just because he’s an LP employee. He has installed LP SmartSide siding on projects himself and appreciates the quality. “It’s a great product, and I hope to see more engineered wood siding options added and see the company continue to evolve and grow.”
LP gratefully acknowledges Mike Brandt and all of the hardworking employees that make our company exceptional. Happy 20th birthday, LP® SmartSide® Trim & Siding! The future is looking bright.