Interview by Uriah Young
QFTD: Tell us about yourself. Who is Jason Leck?
Jason: First and foremost, I am a dedicated husband and family man. My family means so much to me. I think I am a very light-hearted individual, who is pretty down-to-earth. I am one of the easiest people you could ever speak to. The other part of me that would sum me up is - and I say this light-heartedly - I have always seen myself as a winner. Whatever I do, I usually succeed. And I do that because once I set my mind to something, typically there’s nothing that can change it. I'm not the type of person to try and outdo someone, but I feel that anything worth doing is worth overdoing. I live by that motto.
QFTD: What’s a typical day like for you?
Jason: Typically, it’s being up at 5 a.m. and being in the office by 6 a.m., hitting the ground running, making sure I have taken care of a lot of tasks before most people are out of bed. I find that I am more productive 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. than I am 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. because I am able to batten down the hatches early when it’s my time. When I think about all that has to be done and at various time periods throughout my day, I am lucky to have empowered so many great people who work for me. I have a great operations manager; I have a great sales manager. I firmly believe that it’s about people, process, and then success. If you believe in the people that you have and you empower them, they can free you up to be able to drive culture and vision for your company. So, my day varies for the most part, but it’s mostly because I am surrounded by people who are even smarter than me.
QFTD: What was it like growing up and watching your dad grow his business into what it is today.
Jason: It was challenging. That’s probably not the answer you would expect, but it was tough because I had a father who worked very hard for long hours. But his sacrifice, along with my grandfather’s, laid a great foundation for our family. A lot of my work values and ethics were instilled in me when I was younger by my grandfather and my father. Their philosophy was always, “99% of success is just showing up everyday.” Growing up, I learned from them that when you don’t want to do something, but you continue to do it, only then will you see the fruits of your labor. Some people look at a successful person and say, “I wish I could be like him, but a lot of times they don’t see the sacrifices that go into what gets that person to where they are when it comes to success. Ultimately, I appreciate what they did to help me become the man that I am today.
QFTD: What skills do you need to have to be an effective leader in your field?
Jason: Where I sit, the most important thing is being compassionate. The reason is because once your business gets to a certain size, everybody’s problems become your problems. No one ever operates at 100%, and to make the whole wheel turn, you have to understand everyone has lives outside of work. A big portion of everyone’s life is at work, and if they’re not happy at home, they are usually not happy at work, and vice-versa. So, you have to take an interest in people and learn how to manage personalities at work. Sometimes people don’t see eye-to-eye, and you have to make them still work together to make the ship move forward.
QFTD: Your company offers a variety of services. How has expanding your services helped your business grow to what it is today?
Jason: You know, I think our core business has always been waste removal and recycling, but what we found was when we were providing those services, our customers were saying we also have additional needs. They’d say, “We need paper-shredding for our business or recycling for electronic devices.” Then, with clients who worked on constructions job sites, they mentioned needing portable restrooms and portable hand wash stations. Because we look at a lot of metrics, we discovered that it costs a lot of money to gain a new customer. What we’ve learned is that once you have a customer, you need to accommodate their needs. We’ve had only positive feedback after expanding; we’ve covered a lot of bases, and we have had an opportunity to grow and be competitive against national businesses.
QFTD: Four months ago, as a customer, I emailed your company with questions about certain policies. Within 24 hours I received a call back. After browsing your website, I noticed its practicality and user-friendliness. Clearly, interaction with the public through those channels of communication are important to your company. Outside of business, what are some other things that Leck does to interact with the community.
Jason: First of all, I want to say thanks for mentioning that. That is a thing I try to drive as a culture. One of the big things we have as a culture is we acknowledge that we are a service business. I find it ironic that the majority of service businesses have call attendants that don't put priority on the customer. One thing thing with some small businesses is that they don’t take care of the small problems without realizing those small problems can become big problems. We strive to meet our customers’ needs through our communications. To answer your question about what we do in the community...we are very big on doing community service. We donate a lot of things for events that occur in our community. One example is “Welcome Day” in Newtown. We donate a generous amount to causes and we sponsor a few nonprofit organizations to aid their operations.
QFTD You are the leader of your Masonic Lodge in Newtown. What are some charitable efforts you have spearheaded this past year?
Jason: We started doing our family movie night about two years ago. All the funds we collect from donations are turned over at the end of the year to the Bucks County Food Bank. They’re a great organization we support. Also, about four years ago, the Pennsylvania Masons put forth a charitable effort to collect money for what’s called “Change for Troops”. We have continued that effort so that our troops overseas can benefit from the money donated through our lodge, along with other lodges. That money helps support their wives, who are over here with children. That money could help with a car seat and other supplies that aid the families of our troops. Lastly, we are passionate about making sure that children are taken care of. One of our lodge’s main focuses is an educational one that supports kids with Dyslexia. In working with Ed Weiser, the Past Grand Master of Pennsylvania, we have been able to make contributions to some of the Masonic Youth Charities. We strive to do as much as we can, and we consider giving back to communities a priority.
QFTD: In your opinion, why is it important to support local businesses?
Jason: In my experience, and I think data can back it up, when you support local businesses, more of your money is spent within your community and funnels down to make stronger communities. I am a big advocate of Small Business Day in the U.S., and I do all I can to support small business. When you are not always driven by profit, and you are driven by helping your customer, sometimes you will find that you get a much better return for your dollar spent if you deal with a local company that is not driven by the bottom line all the time.
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