My name is Merrick, CEO and Founder of Modular Maven and the two guys in the photo are my mentors, partners, and friends. Rick Murdock & Curtis Fletcher. These two are industry leaders setting the bar for modular construction to go mainstream. If you do any research on modular construction, Rick and Curtis’ names will surely pop up, and their vast knowledge of and experience in off-site construction will be undeniable. One other thing you may read is about how they lead. I know all about that, and I’d love to tell you more, but first, let me tell you a little bit about myself.
I have been working since I was fourteen years old. I’ve always had a strong work ethic and understood that if I didn’t work hard towards my goals, no one else would for me. I’ve had a passion for the construction industry my whole life because I believe it is an industry where hard work and determination pay off. And for me, it did. Today I am living my passion. I aim to pay it forward and help other women build meaningful career paths in modular construction. You can find more about that in the Women Offsite section here on our website.
My journey in modular began nearly a decade ago. I had the opportunity to start working with Rick Murdock and Curtis Fletcher at a modular manufacturing company that Rick used to own and operate and Curtis was doing modular design work for. Back then, I was an eager young woman who had a strong desire to grow a career in construction. I had also been through many “jobs” where I felt people were being treated unfairly or poorly by leadership, which never made sense to me why. During the years we spent together there, I did anything to try and move up. I was taking on duties from the Front Desk, Accounting, Human Resources, Safety Manager, and self-appointed Director of Employee Happiness. My self-appointed role was my favorite of all. I remember feeling the burning desire to do something to try and make a difference in my co-workers’ daily lives. I pushed to create a budget to spend on the people and was granted $30k for the year on various small acts of kindness to put smiles on faces and show appreciation. It was and continues to be my passion.
Rick sold that company in 2015. On his last day (after a goodbye party we threw him), on his way out the door, he tapped my reception desk, and as he walked out, he said, “Hey Sunshine, you’re coming with me!” I didn’t really think that would be true then, but here we are today, so the story unfolds…
Shortly after Rick and Curtis left their positions, I made my departure too. I went on to do non-profit accounting for a local B-Corp here in Boise, and it was AWESOME! These people understood how to treat their employees, work hard for humanity, and play hard too. I learned more about what employee happiness means and best leadership practices. About six months into working there, I received a call from Rick and Curtis. They had just started a new company named Prefab Logic and wanted to meet with me. I agreed to have lunch with Rick, and at the time, he offered me a position to help kick off their company. The offer was risky for me, a start-up, and I would need to take a slight pay cut. They didn’t have much for benefits at the time either. My first inclination was to decline. I told Rick, “I’m already pretty happy where I’m at, and they have the best culture I have ever worked in.” Rick stopped me in my tracks and said, if you come with us, we’ll let you create the culture your way. And so, I was sold, it was a risk, but I remembered what I wrote in Rick’s farewell card back in 2015 “You’re the type of leader I’d follow anywhere, fare thee well, Mr. Murdock” That statement was true then, and it remains true now.
Rick and Curtis are what I’d call Legacy Leaders. For decades they each have a track record of retaining their people and building great relationships. In fact, I’m not the only one who followed Rick and Curtis. They have a team that has worked with them for up to 30 years! There’s only one reason someone would stay with you that long, and that’s how you love, respect, and provide opportunities for them. Both Rick and Curtis have been great mentors to so many. Since 2015, united we have built four strong modular companies, Prefab Logic, Autovol, Effektiv House, and Waypaver International, all members of the P4 Housing Collective. These companies are not only strong because of their abilities and the knowledge they share but are strong because of the people that are in them. All hand-selected to meet their positions’ requirements and uphold high standards of character, our companies need to thrive, and the rest is history.
As legacy leaders would, they have created a path for me to bring our best culture, design, and emotional intelligence practices to you and your company. With a shared vision, we want to extend what we’ve done throughout our careers with those who are inspired to impact others’ lives—spreading positive vibes throughout our industry—and making modular construction the preferred sector to work in and build careers in.
Get inspired with me? I promise it will be a fun journey!!