RS: Our mother always said that we work so well together
because we realize how much we need each other. Melissa is
really good at things that I either have no interest in or would
struggle greatly to accomplish.
Typically, I don’t know if the 50/50 situation works. Most of
the time in an organization, someone must have the deciding
vote. I’ve known a lot of siblings over the years where the older
vs. the younger sibling is a problem. With our situation, the
biggest problem has been that I just want to go ;shing 40 hours
a week for my job. She won’t let me.
KW: How are your customers changing?
MR: They are younger, expect more automation and tech, but
really are developing more sophisticated communication styles.
There has been a great deal of education in our lives to get our
point across in less abrasive ways.
RS: Decision-makers keep getting younger. They are more
adept at technology and crave information and data. The
successful ones are looking 12-20 years down the road when
KW: How is your business adapting to those changes?
MR: We are gladly reaching into the younger crowd to use
their computer skills. Infrastructure has been a priority for us
over the last few years, and we are making strides. And communication is so important for us. It’s the biggest part of our job
because of our business model, so we work on saying or writing
information in ways that our customers can digest easily.
RS: We are focusing on process improvement to make
Bene;cial more ef;cient so we can spend more time with our
customers — educating them and keeping them abreast of
what’s on the horizon.
KW: What has been your most dif;cult day on the job?
MR: I guess coming back after our father’s funeral to sit in
what was his of;ce. He had not been a part of the day-to-day
for some time due to his illness, but it was still so upsetting and
mind-blowing to process that he was really gone from the place
he and I spent so much time and effort together. With both
our parents’ deaths, there is no way I could have continued to
work, much less just function, without my husband, J.L. He got
me through it. And my siblings. All that support made the days
gradually get less dif;cult and eventually positive again.
RS: When good travel plans go bad.
KW: What does a typical day look like for you?
MR: First thing: greetings from a smiling face at the front desk.
Makes me feel like smiling back and being happy to be at work.
Usually, before I get to my of;ce upstairs, we have quick pull-up meetings in each of the of;ces downstairs (admin and
accounting). Check that email … again. And then, getting
down to the real work.
My tasks center around contract interpretation, other legal
issues and accounting. But there is a lot of time spent on
personnel — good and bad. We all need a listening ear, and
sometimes I am the listener. Then if it’s possible, after listening,
I’m involved in trying to make changes to make our work lives
run more smoothly.
RS: Insane amount of emails and phone calls. Meetings with
clients or fellow workers to address project or service issues. On
airplanes too often.
KW: What’s your favorite part of your job?
MR: Feeling like I have made something good happen for
The late Frances and H.R.
Sledd founded Bene;cial
Electrical Associated Inc.
in 1986. Their children,
Melissa D.S. Rogers
and Ron Sledd Jr., run
the business today,
now named Bene;cial