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6 09, 2012

Meet the Rent What? Staff, Part 1: Rick Garcia

By |September 6th, 2012|Company, Rent What Team|2 Comments

We have such amazing employees here at Rent What? and Sew What? and could not be more proud of them if we tried! I would love you to meet a few of the hardworking Rent What? employees who are the stars of the warehouse, making sure everything goes out smoothly and in show-ready condition and then returns on time so that it is available for the next customer’s show or special event. This series of entries will be titled “Meet the RW? Staff”, and I am so excited have our readers to meet some of these wonderful employees, too.

The first person I wanted you to meet is Rick Garcia, who is the Warehouse Manager for both companies, and Production Coordinator for all of the rental traffic that is constantly going in and out of the warehouse. Rick’s many talents and abilities are integral to almost every aspect of Rent What?’s day to day operations, and we’re so grateful to have him here. We are eager for you to get to know him a little bit, too!

When did you first start here at Rent What?

Rick started in 2005 with Sew What?, then moved to Rent What? in 2008.

If you could take a vacation to anywhere in the world, where would you go?

The Rain Forests of Brazil—his dream is to be dropped off in the middle of the forest and have to use his smarts to find his way back to civilization.

What kind of work did you do before coming to Sew What? / Rent What?

He worked in the contracts department of Polar Tanker (of Phillips 66 Oil Tankers).

Do you have a special talent?

He tinkers in everything—electronics, plumbing, computers, carpentry, automotive, etc. Rick recently rebuilt his girlfriend’s CPR 600 Motorcycle “just for fun”. He’s become our company’s very own “MacGyver”!

What is your favorite memory from Rent What?

All of the Halloween Parties here—forwhich he often won best costume (he recently designed an actual light-up Christmas tree costume as well as a 10ft tall dragon costume!).

What are some of your hobbies?

He loves working on motorcycles, and recently has gotten involved with breeding Ball Pythons with a few of his gorgeous snakes (he’s looking to get a Bumblebee Python bred soon!).

What project have you worked on recently that was interesting or challenging?

Recently they worked on a huge installation for Skechers. The sheer size of the install and amount of draping and hardware from RW?, the incredibly complex scheduling, and all of the thinking they had to do on their feet was quite exciting. Getting the job done right and on-time, and to the very happy satisfaction of the client, was also extremely rewarding for him and his entire crew.

29 10, 2018

Meet the Staff–UPDATES! Andrea Garcia

By |October 29th, 2018|Company, Rent What Team, Sew What Team|1 Comment

Next in our Meet The Staff—UPDATES! Blog series is one of the most earnest, hardest working employees that this company has ever had, Andrea Garcia (formerly Andrea Fraser). She has worn numerous hats here at SW?, and we are so pleased to have had her recently “change hats” yet again into a role that she seemed truly destined for. Please take a moment and read a little bit about this extraordinary member of the Whatter’s family, Andrea!

What were you originally hired to do, and how have your duties/job descriptions changed since working here?

I was originally hired back in July of 2015 as a receptionist. As time went on my duties grew and I dabbled a little in purchasing and accounting, but where I really found a passion was for sales. I was given a very generous opportunity to join the sales staff in July of 2018…. and I have to be honest, I couldn’t be happier! I’m thoroughly enjoying this new position and couldn’t be more grateful for this opportunity to grow within this company and learn from everyone here.

What are some favorite memories/circumstances/events from being part of the Sew What? family?

I sincerely enjoy any function that we have here at Sew What?, Inc that involves getting the entire staff together to have a good time (and of course the delicious treats that often accompany such a gathering). 😉

My favorite recent memory is when we held a “White Elephant Gift Exchange” for Christmas last year. The silly presents everyone brought were often hysterical and cheeky, and it was just so much fun watching everyone practically “become kids again” for the holidays.

What project have you worked on recently that was interesting or challenging? What did you learn from it?

As a new member of the sales team I am learning a lot every single day. It’s been quite the adventure so far!

All of the office staff was recently given the incredible opportunity to work hands on with the warehouse staff. We were able to assist with measuring and cutting fabric, pinning drapery, and even QC-ing (in quality control) the drapes before they left our building. Undeniably, it was a crucial learning experience for all of us—especially for me as a beginner in this industry, but also for all of my considerably-experienced colleagues as well. Getting completely hands on with custom projects from start to finish was an invaluable and essential way for me to be able to better help and answer questions for my customers on a daily basis, and it was a fantastic experience getting to work with our tremendously talented warehouse staff, too!

7 02, 2017

Congratulations Rick and Andrea!

By |February 7th, 2017|Company, Rent What Team, Sew What Team|1 Comment

We truly feel like we are part of one big “Whatters” family around here, and we thoroughly enjoy celebrating all of the wonderful accomplishments and magical moments of our colleagues, too. Recently we got to not only find out that two of our favorite staff members had gotten engaged, but then we also got to plan a fun surprise celebration for one of them (with the help of the other one)! Our Warehouse Manager, Rick, and our Receptionist/Administrative “Guru,” Andrea, have been dating for several years now, and we cannot imagine two people who are more perfectly suited for one another than these two. As you can read by their “Meet the SW Staff” blog entries, they both have a huge love of adventure, and the tropics in particular. So when they went on a spectacular backpacking/hiking/off-roading adventure down in Costa Rica in mid-January, we knew that they were going to have the experience of a lifetime.

What we all didn’t know at the time, though, was that Rick had been planning this trip, and his proposal to Andrea (with a custom-made engagement ring), for quite some time now. Their trek deep into the heart of numerous jungles, beaches, and volcanic natural parks went incredibly well, with all of the drama, and wild animals, that the rain forest could throw at them. But nothing was quite as dramatic and memorable as when Rick proposed to Andrea in front of a stunning church in a village so far off the beaten path that they had to drive down miles of mountainous dirt roads just to reach it. And we’ve been told it was completely worth it!

When they got back and let us know what they had done, we were too excited to let it pass without some sort of celebration. So with Rick’s help, we got Andrea out of the office for a little while, and when they got back we had the entire staff and a huge, beautiful cake (personalized in just the way we knew the two of them would get a kick out of) and rows of glasses of sparkling cider waiting to surprise her in the warehouse with the proper toast this fabulous occasion deserved. We are so lucky we have the two of these remarkable people to help keep our companies running smoothly on a daily basis, but we know that the two of them are even luckier to have one another. Congratulations, Rick and Andrea—all of us Whatters wish you a lifetime of laughter, humor, adventure, and all the love your hearts can hold!

26 04, 2017

Accidental Return Has A Happy Ending

By |April 26th, 2017|Company, News, Rent What Team, Sew What Team|3 Comments

The fast-paced world of rental stage drapes and theatrical supplies is absolutely never a dull moment! Sometimes rental orders go out within an hour, and they can often come back to us within an hour after the event is over. That’s why offering rental options to our clients is so popular with our customers—not having to worry about storing lots of stage drapes, track pieces, pipe and base hardware, pop-up dressing room kits, and everything in between is a huge benefit for many of our clients who either do not have the storage space to keep it safely stored from event to event, or simply do not have the need for the same goods time and time again. This is why we love offering both purchase AND rental options whenever possible!


However, when drapes are returned back to us, our clients haven’t always had full control over their care and transportation, which can sometimes lead to some “unusual” items that can get returned with their rental goods. Sometimes it’s something as innocuous as our clients accidentally returning purchased drapes with their rental drapes, but sometimes it’s unintentionally returning personal items of our customers, their clients, or the venue itself with some of their rental gear. When that happens, we are quick to let them know exactly what has been returned, which order it came back with, and what event it was possibly associated with. And then we help arrange for them to either come by and pick it back up, or help ship it back to wherever they would prefer to keep it. Our customers know that when an item is accidentally returned back to RW? that belongs to them, we will do everything in our power to get it back to where it belongs as quickly as possible. It’s not just our “Extreme Service” that does this, but just common courtesy…. In a touring and special event environment, it’s good to know that someone is always looking out for you, and we know our clients truly appreciate that about us!

Recently though, “something” was found folded within some returned rental drapes that did not belong to our client or their venue, and didn’t actually belong to ANYONE…..It was a baby hummingbird, and just as cute as can be! The poor thing had somehow gotten swept up inside a bunch of large rental stage draperies and put inside a hamper. We had no idea how long the little sweetie was stuck in there, but when the drapes were laid out for inspection back at our warehouse the little beauty was discovered by our staff, and immediately they sprang into action to help this cutie-pie out!


Our Operations Manager Rick Garcia wears many hats in this company, but he also has experience reviving hummingbirds in the past, and so he added one more “hat” to his duties here and took the reins on helping this little one out, too. Knowing that the little sweetie was not only in shock, but probably very dehydrated and hungry also (since they have such a fast metabolism), he worked with some of the sales staff here to mix up a batch of sugar water and use a large straw to slowly get as much into her beak as she could handle. The poor thing was so worn out she could hardly keep her eyes open or her little head up, so we were very concerned for the sweetie’s fate. But after slowly working with her for about ten minutes, we could see her visibly start waking up and getting her bearings. He walked her outside, and opened his hand, and within a minute or so she took off outside like a rocket! This little hummingbird just needed some R&R and a little hydration, and that seemed to do the trick. This was one case where we were ALL very relieved that an “extra item” inadvertently sent back with a rental order was “returned” to where it ultimately belonged…. Outside, flying from flowering tree to tree right here on our sunny Southern California hillside. Company bird Burt was very proud with how our staff helped this little one out—making it a very happy ending for this rental return, indeed!

16 04, 2015

Improving Our Rentals Through Clever Packaging

By |April 16th, 2015|Products|3 Comments

We are always striving to improve, grow, and expand our capabilities here at Sew What? Inc. and Rent What? Inc. and truly enjoy doing so! Recently our Warehouse Manager Rick Garcia worked with our Receiving Coordinator Chris Greenhaw on an effective way to keep our rental Solenoid Kabuki Systems nice and cushioned inside our sturdy Pelican cases while transporting to our clients around the country. With an extremely high replacement cost on these items, we wanted to make sure that they are packaged in such a way that will keep them safe and sound for the sometimes thousands of miles they will travel between our warehouse and our clients venues. But of course we also needed to make sure that they were packaged in such a way that made it as simple as possible for our clients to be able to open up the kits and install them without a tangled up mess waiting for them inside the cases.

Solenoid-packaging

Together they developed a fantastic and creative way to pack everything up, using super industrial strength packing foam, and cutting out various squares that specifically fit the unique shapes of our solenoid kabuki heads, cables, power supplies, and remote triggers perfectly—and we (and our clients) couldn’t be happier! We love getting challenges like these because they truly help us grow as a company, and improve the quality of our products and services in a way that might not have happened otherwise.

16 06, 2014

Exciting New Changes Afoot!

By |June 16th, 2014|Company, News, Rent What Team, Sew What Team|0 Comments

This has been an extraordinarily exciting time to be a “Whatter” here at Rent What? & Sew What?. We have recently written about some of the big changes we’ve been going through with our company this past year in many provocative ways— to have more of a social media presence online, to help streamline our processes, and to make things even easier and more convenient for our clients. And now we are super excited to be able to show some of them off to our loyal readers!

office-in-warehouse

One of the most impressive features of these changes is the creation and implementation of three brand new offices in our warehouse for three managers of different areas of our workforce, who really needed to become more “present” out back with our wonderful warehouse staff.  One of the offices is for Andrea, our Printing Department Manager, who is now conveniently located directly behind our Digital Printer and near all of the sewing staff.

Andrea

Another one is for Rick, our Warehouse Manager (and “do everything under the sun”-guru), and another office is for myself, Logistics Manager, and we are both located right in the heart of our shipping bay area. This way we can have a firm grasp on everything that is coming and going in the warehouse, as well as have the pleasure of working closely with our hard-working shipping and receiving coordinators Chris and Raul, too.

Rick pic 1a

Getting to be right in the thick of things has been thrilling for all of us, but for Andrea and myself especially since we have been working inside the main office area for the past few years, so being out in the warehouse is a completely new and fascinating environment. It has been a fairly big change for sure, but definitely a FANTASTIC one, too! It really helps us all to realize that this is just another positive step in the right direction for our company to fully integrate with Sales, Rentals, Printing, Sewing, and Shipping. I personally cannot wait to see what other exciting changes are in store for our company in the future…..!