I’m not sure how I’d classify us as to size compared to other timber frame companies. And what does size mean? Average, or perhaps, combined employee body weight, number of projects raised yearly, total board footage worked per year, number of pegs purchased, amount of revenue or simply the number of people comprising the company? Let’s go with number of people. The Timber Frame Business Council did compile some statistics based on a survey of two hundred companies who are members of the Timber Framers Guild and/or the Timber Frame Business Council and, of whom sixty-eight responded, the median was 6 and the mean was 11.35. I know of three companies comprised of one person. I know of a whole bunch of two- or three-person operations and there are some companies with 85 people on the payroll. And I’m not counting the various subs, or representatives or the occasional itinerant timber framer who we make use of from time to time.
There are thirteen of us here at Lancaster County Timber Frames. So in terms of size I guess we are just a bit above average, at least within the limits of that survey. We have been at this size for almost a decade now. We have resisted the temptation to get bigger. Actually, there is no real temptation involved. We are at our optimal size, the size we want to be. Any larger and I suspect that I would become somewhat disconnected. At this size I can control the quality and stay involved in all those aspects of the craft which pulled me in decades ago. And besides, to quote Clint Eastwood, “A man’s got to know his limitations.”
– Tony Zaya