Kevin Hancock is featured in Maine Home + Design magazine’s January edition, where writer Sophie Nelson recounts an interview she conducted with Hancock Lumber’s President last fall. “”In Maine, Hancock Lumber is a part of the landscape…Most of us are at least vaguely aware of the company’s longstanding history in our state and, as the company continues to thrive in the era of the big-box store, view it as a point of pride: Hancock Lumber is alive and well here, thanks in no small part to its CEO, Kevin Hancock.”
In the article titled ‘Leading by Listening’, Sophie discusses Kevin’s path into the family’s lumber business and how he found himself as company president at 32-years old. Kevin navigated a decade of steady growth at the helm of the company until the economic and housing crisis hit in 2007. It was a hard road that took its toll on Kevin, and in 2010 he found himself speechless–literally. After a year of tests and doctor visits, Kevin learned he had a rare neurological voice disorder called spasmodic dysphonia. The reality of how he would run a company of 430 employees–with no voice–weighed on him heavily.
Inspired and intrigued by the cover of National Geographic in the summer of 2012, Kevin decided to take a solo trip to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. This initial trip set off what would turn into a series of six trips back to the Rez, a fascination with the Oglala Sioux people, land, and culture, a journal that would turn into his first published book, and the power to look inward for change.
Kevin’s journey out west led to a dramatic leadership transformation. Sophie writes, “For the past few years, Hancock has tried to create a work environment where all employees have the opportunity to lead, to make decisions, to say what they think, and to live rich, fulfilling lives that are separate from the jobs they do.” Kevin is leading by example and paving the way for the next generation at Hancock Lumber Company. Visit Kevin’s website www.kevindhancock.com to learn more about his book, Not for Sale: Finding Center in the Land of Crazy Horse and to purchase your own copy.