This article is written from the perspective of Reuben Shetler, a purchasing agent at nuCamp. This is the fourth in a series of four posts connecting nuCamp’s core values to the Amish culture. The company has four core values — work hard, always do the right thing, service over self, and care genuinely.
The vision and mission of nuCamp can be summed up by the words engraved in a wooden plaque in the shape of a teardrop trailer.
The plaque reads, “To be a group of Men and Women who care deeply for each other, honor one another, are transparent, and build relationships that change people’s lives. To be Servant Leaders, living out a purpose that creates servant leaders. Striving to build and distribute product that is High Quality and superb in function and innovation, reflecting integrity and honesty. Our goal is to always esteem the other higher than ourself.”
Joe Mullet, the founder of nuCamp, hung that plaque on the wall. It serves as a reminder of the principles nuCamp was founded on. Joe wanted everyone who enters nuCamp to be able to see his vision.
Embodying nuCamp’s Core Values
nuCamp’s four Core Values are the offspring of this mission statement.
For Joe, caring genuinely about his team members, serving them over himself, and creating an atmosphere of working hard, was doing the right thing. In turn, the entire culture at nuCamp has blossomed around these values.
As Joe walks out the hallway, he steps onto the mezzanine overlooking the production floor. Below, he sees men and women working together as a team. He sees lively conversation, laughter, tons of energy, and expressions of empathy as the team members interact. The assembly lines are humming with the harmony of a hive of bees. nuCamp is buzzing with life.
Joe never dreamed his company would employ up to 200 people. He envisioned a workforce of maybe 50-75 team members, but nuCamp has far surpassed his wildest dreams.
“But still, it’s not about size. It’s about quality. I want our workers to enjoy life and be prosperous,” he says. “Riches and the accumulation of goods are vanities. Like King Solomon realized at the end of his life, what matters is our relationship with God and our fellow man.”
As Joe heads to his office and sits down at his desk, he thinks back to conversations he’s had with nuCamp team members.
“I’ve had team members thank me for providing a clean workplace,” Joe says. “Clean, as in free from dirt, and clean as in free from profanity. I’ve seen team members grow from thinking they had something to prove to realizing we love them just the way they are. I’ve seen arrogance flipped to brokenness, all because of kind words and caring hearts.”
It’s important to Joe to treat all workers equally from a department head to a new team member just learning the ropes. It doesn’t matter their age or experience level; all deserve to be treated kindly and with respect. nuCamp strives to take care of its team members.
“nuCamp will always be gracious,” Joe says. “The bottom line is, we want to look out for the other person. That is doing the right thing.”
From the beginning
Back when nuCamp was a fledgling company, a young man did the right thing by believing in Joe Mullet. Joe and this newcomer were two very different people, but they both had a common goal and a belief in what Joe was trying to achieve. This young man formed a deep relationship with Joe. Today, he’s the CEO of nuCamp.
“Scott Hubble had no reason to believe in me,” Joe reflects. “But we were friends, and he wanted to help me succeed. Sometimes, believing in a friend is doing the right thing. It can be the difference between an empty building or a building full of bustling activity.”
Scott Hubble did what it took to help the company get on its feet. Sometimes this meant making business decisions. Sometimes it meant putting in long hours. Sometimes it even meant going on the floor and making shipping boxes.
Now, as CEO, Scott shares the passion with Joe for doing the right thing for the team. “Always doing the right thing with the team here at nuCamp may seem like an easier order to fulfill than holding meticulous building standards or dealing with a dissatisfied customer, but sometimes, it can be much harder,” Scott says.
“We know each other, care for each other, and empathize with each other. As such, holding each other accountable can be difficult because it can be taken as an afront. But it is absolutely doing the right thing.”
Scott smiles as he reflects on the good and the bad. “Without holding each other to the standards we set for the team, we not only have a job done in an inferior manner, but ultimately, we are holding each other back from elevating and being a better version of ourselves. When we all help each other grow, everybody wins from the individual to the team to the customer.”
It’s not just nuCamp team members that Joe and Scott care about. The customer is the most important individual of all. “I’m on the road a lot,” Joe said. “I’ve literally had to go the extra mile at times to make a customer happy.”
Sometimes, it can reap good things in unexpected ways. Once, Joe delivered a camper to a customer in Everett, Washington. They ended up spending the day together and toured the big Boeing plant located nearby. “Sometimes, when you do the right thing, you make friendships you never thought were possible,” Joe says with a smile.
Scott agrees. “Always doing the right thing means never taking shortcuts – be it buying the right component, making sure the build is done right or caring for the client even when it’s hard. Oftentimes, that means spending more money – without any return; OR spending more time – without any thanks. No matter the circumstance, our approach will always be consistent. We will act with integrity and put ourselves into our customers’ shoes.”
Whenever Joe is at the facility, he stops and takes some time to watch his team working together. He sees a culture of caring genuinely. He sees service over self, no matter what. He sees the beauty of hard work. And he knows that, in creating nuCamp, he has done the right thing.
“Always doing the right thing means leading an honest and upright life,” Joe says. “It means you admit when you’re wrong. It’s not a weakness to apologize.”
Creating a legacy
When someone is down, they need love.
Joe once read these words in a church newsletter. They have stuck with him since.
“It’s the right thing to show love to someone who is less fortunate,” Joe says. “It makes me think of Proverbs 14:31, ‘He that oppresses the poor reproaches his Maker: but he that honors Him has mercy on the poor.’”
Sometimes doing the right thing means letting go.
For Joe, that meant passing the business on to his son. “It was fun watching Jesse grow into the business,” Joe says. “He has taken it to the next level, organizing things and making things happen. The building blocks for the transition were in place. It’s hard to let go, and I wasn’t quite ready. But now I see it was the right thing to do. Letting go can be crucial to your own life, and the life of the next generation.”
nuCamp is growing and expanding into its next phase. But the legacy remains. The vision stays the same. The Core Values continue.
The plaque still reads, “To be a group of Men and Women who care deeply for each other, honor one another, are transparent and build relationships that change people’s lives. To be Servant Leaders, living out a purpose that creates servant leaders. Striving to build and distribute product that is High Quality and superb in function and innovation, reflecting integrity and honesty. Our goal is to always esteem the other higher than ourself.”