Looking ahead to Honest Abe’s upcoming 40th anniversary in 2019, Josh Beasley, President of Honest Abe Log Homes, discusses a little of the company’s history.
By Josh Beasley
I likely have a different perspective than the Smith family on how Honest Abe began, as I’ve always heard it from the perspective of company’s first president, Rick Denton. After Doug Smith, the company founder, and his father built the first home, Doug became more interested in turning it into a business opportunity. Rick had come back home to attend a local event and ran into Doug. They started talking about the idea, and not long afterward Rick was leaving a promising career in Chattanooga and moving back to Moss to help Doug launch Honest Abe.
Thankfully, many technical improvements have been made to products throughout the industry over the years. The wood species Honest Abe uses has changed, and so has material preparation, fasteners, sealants, building processes and the list goes on. It’s an ever-evolving system and process to make a better, longer lasting product for our customers while preserving the log home look and feel.
Today, the state of the industry and the company is strong, but we must be diligent in observing and any future changes in the market. We’ve always served a very niche client, and that has not changed. Our customers are becoming increasingly interested in reduced exterior maintenance as they grow older, so we’re seeing those types of products being incorporated more and more. We try to strike a balance between supporting our core products and looking for opportunities to introduce new ones. Southern TimberCraft, our newest division of Honest Abe, represents a new offering to the market using primarily Structural Insulated Panels (SIPS) walls rather than log or timber. They’re a “building system” and offer a customer an incredibly strong and efficient home with a quick build time.
As president of Honest Abe, I try to provide leadership that allows our team to make their own decisions, own results and serve our clients well. I’m competitive in nature, so I’m always comparing today’s results with the past and looking for ways to step things up. I enjoy thinking and talking through ideas and scenarios, even if many do not materialize, as you never know where the next great idea may come from. Ultimately, I want to see myself and our people grow and provide an environment to allow that. If we can do that, then we can enjoy our jobs, our products become better and our clients will be happier.