General Forman (Prairies)
You meet a lot of people on your career journey, and you can never tell which ones will have an outsize impact on your ultimate trajectory. For Cory Railton, that one was Chad Pottle. Cory had begun his education as a refrigeration technician straight out of high school, and he did his apprenticeship under Chad. The two parted ways when Cory received his certification, and began to establish himself as a talented and reliable mechanic for a local company in Regina .
Meanwhile, Chad had received the go-ahead to start opening up the Prairies as a new market for Gateway. Just as the company’s founders had taken Gateway from a single truck to a fleet of service providers back in the 1960s, Chad was essentially a one-man operation, and he was on the hunt for talent. Every once in a while Cory would hear from his former instructor about making the move over to Gateway, and in 2014 he finally answered the call.
“I wanted to work with a new company that had real potential for growth,” Cory recalls. “I felt like my old company had plateaued, whereas Gateway always seemed to be pushing forward. They’re not scared of risk, and they do a great job of identifying potential areas for expansion and following through on that potential. I had the sense I could grow along with this company, and that’s exactly what’s happened.”
Several promotions later, Cory is a General Foreman. He coordinates and oversees all work-related activities in southern Saskatchewan. Although relatively sparsely populated, it is a vast geographic area, which means he gets called out of the office pretty frequently.
“I feel like I have a good balance of field and office work. I don’t like being chained to a desk, and with the size of our service area and the variety of jobs that we do, there’s always something coming up I need to see to personally.”
A detailed-oriented professional, Cory counts ensuring his technicians are following protocol and safety requirements, which can vary considerably from one project to the next, as his greatest challenge. “No two customers are the same, and it’s important that we follow the rules at all times: the client’s and our own.”
Expanding a new territory has a frontier-like quality, and as a result Cory’s team in Regina are extremely tight-knit. They work together and weekend together, and he feels confident that though they are small in number, through their knowledge, resourcefulness and initiative few projects are beyond their capacity. There’s no telling how big Gateway’s operations will grow in the Prairies, and Cory’s excited to be along for the ride.