This month continues our series of recognizing the outstanding up-and-comers in our industry who have already made a significant impact while in their 20s.
Meet Tom Spicher
CRL Lighting Agency, Newtown, Penn.
How long I’ve been at the company: 1.5 years
How I ended up in lighting: I have always been in the wholesale/trade industry, and I wouldn’t be a lighting rep today if it weren’t for my father. My father owns Spicher & Company, which designs and manufactures artwork and a product called Vintage Vinyl Flooring for almost 30 years. I worked for him after I graduated college, designing product and also selling at shows. I made several connections at these markets — including my good friend Jeff Stander, who introduced me to agency owner Chas Lassoff.
What I would be doing if I weren’t in the lighting business: If I were able to choose a dream career for myself, it would be to either be a therapist/counselor or a comedian. My favorite thing to do is make others laugh or help them understand their value.
Job accomplishment I am most proud of to date: I have always worked in small business. I am very proud of the opportunity that I have, working with my current agency and the responsibilities that I am given. I hope to continue growth within this agency and the industry as a whole.
What I like about the industry: I like how closely knit everyone is in the lighting industry. I feel like I have a second family when I spend time at shows. Trade shows can be some of the hardest work we experience as reps, but it is also a refreshing break from the daily tasks I am used to.
The lighting industry as a whole is in a unique transitional situation currently. With the development of LED technology, new designs are letting manufacturers design with almost no limit. Within the next couple years, the designs are going to be different than anything we have ever seen and we will be making new trends instead of rehashing old ones.
What I wish were different: I wish that more factories were based in the United States. I totally understand that this is a pipe dream, but I truly wish that manufacturing locally paid off better. Lead times, back orders, and lack of availability for replacement parts are some of the problems that make my job challenging.
Where I hope my lighting career will take me: I hope to build valuable relationships in the industry as well as within my customers, and evolve to run my own agency.