Asia Thao is an Advanced Panel Builder with Design Ready Controls (DRC). Asia started at DRC almost two years ago, arriving at the company after being referred by his brother, Song Thao, the Executive Director of St Paul Urban Tennis. Asia originally wanted to be a teacher, attending college for a degree in education. Unfortunately, Asia had to leave school due to financial reasons and spent years working a variety of jobs. Before DRC, Asia was a schoolteacher at a day care center for two years. Then he came to DRC, with no prior experience. DRC provided Asia all the training and prep he needed to start on the floor, prepping harnesses for each production line to wire HVACs and data storage units.

Thanks to Asia’s affable nature and quiet determination he quickly worked his way up, being promoted to being a “wire man”, wiring panels. Then being promoted to Peer Trainer, teaching new employees all the basics to get started. Most recently, Asia was promoted to Advanced Panel Builder, working to wire HVACs and data storage devices from start to finish rather than wiring specific components on each machine. Even with three promotions in two years Asia is showing no signs of slowing down as he was recently approached by management to see if he had interest in being a Production Trainer. While Asia is not sure yet if he wants this position, there seem to be plenty of opportunities for his continued growth at DRC.

For Asia, DRC is a full-fledged career, not just a job. Asia enjoys his work as well as the company culture. He quickly noticed how many young people were there, not just in entry level positions, but as supervisors and leads as well. Having young people in leadership roles has made the work more engaging for Asia, creating a culture that is as fun as it is serious. Wiring and manufacturing can sometimes be dangerous work, but at DRC Asia never feels pressured to speed up production or cut corners. Instead, he feels that he is encouraged to take his time and is left alone to get his work done safely at his own pace. Asia receives excellent mentorship, with great trainers and supervisors helping him to learn and encouraging him to apply for and receive promotions to advance his career within the company. Seeing young people in leadership positions is a reminder to Asia and his peers of what is attainable for them, and Asia quickly joined the ranks in those management positions himself. Asia’s career at DRC provided he and his wife the financial security to buy a house where Asia is enjoying having his own space by producing music and collecting Pokémon. We can’t wait to see how Asia continues to grow within Design Ready Controls.

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