Printed from the blog of Lori Greene, AHC/CDC, CCPR, FDAI
Allegion
Email: lori_greene@allegion.com, Blog: www.idighardware.com or www.ihatehardware.com


Jun 28 2013

Bob Harder, Key Contributor to our Success

Category: Historical,NewsLori @ 2:30 pm Comments (16)
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A few months ago I got the bittersweet news that one of my favorite people in our industry, Bob Harder, was retiring.  I’m not afraid to say…I got a little misty.

Bob has been a big part of my professional life, and the lives of hundreds of others – both within Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies and among our distributor customers.  When I first met Bob (30+ years into his hardware career), he was training our nationwide specification writing team on a software program (Specworks) that he had developed to help us create hardware specifications.  Bob’s program had been used by a smaller group of specwriters and hardware distributors prior to that time, but imagine introducing new technology to a group that had been using Microsoft Word, or paper and a pencil, to write specs.  It wasn’t an easy task to convince some of us that this was a good idea (some specwriters can be a little set in their ways – just sayin), and we needed A LOT of support!

But Bob didn’t just create a software program…he knew how to write specs and create hardware sets, and he knew the products, the customers, and the business.  Lucky for us, he also has the patience of a saint, and a work ethic unmatched by anyone I’ve ever met.  I could call Bob day or night, weekdays and weekends, and he’d answer the phone and fix my problem.  He did the same for all of the other specwriters, and the customers who were using the program.  When I worried that he was working too hard, he worried that I wasn’t getting enough sleep.  I never felt like I was bothering him or that he had better things to do.  And I know he gave everyone that same attention.

More recently, Bob has been instrumental in the development of our new specwriting software, and has continued to be there for us whenever we needed him, even though he was extremely busy juggling various aspects of the new tool’s development.  When Bob’s upcoming retirement was announced, there was a simultaneous feeling of “he deserves it more than anyone,” and “oh no –  how will we survive this?”  We miss him every day, but hope that he’s taking some time to relax and enjoy.

Bob’s retirement party was this week, and the poster below was created in honor of Bob, who is pictured in several photos on the poster depicting our company’s history.  He has been such a huge part of our success, for so many years.  I wanted to share this with you, and give those of you who know and love Bob the opportunity to share your thoughts by leaving a comment.  [Click the image to enlarge it and read the timeline.]

Bob Harder Poster

Bob Harder Plate

16 Responses to “Bob Harder, Key Contributor to our Success”

  1. David L. says:

    Bob,

    Wishing you a happy retirement. I’ve only been with IR about 4 years now, but every conversation, phone call or email exchange I’ve had with you was either:
    A-I needed some technical assistance
    B-I needed you to teach me something
    C-Just friendly chit-chat & industry related conversations

    As I am sure this is not only the case for me, you were spending most of your time helping/teaching others. For this I wanted to say thank you!

    You will be missed, but you deserve to kick back, relax and enjoy!

    David

  2. Julia Farmer says:

    Bob:
    You are truly amazing and leaving an impossible legacy for anyone surpass. It will take a “minimum” of 3 to replace you and I don’t think anyone can replace your passion and dedication. My 12 years with IR has been enriched because you truly care about our success as individuals and as a group. I know I am not alone in wishing you a well deserved retirement. We all love and miss you. Especially your positive, gitt’r done attitude that has made specwriters everywhere look good! As always…

    Hearts,

    Julia

  3. Ryan Pfannenstiel says:

    I never met Bob personally, but his impact was left on me when he trained me for three days on Spextra when I was just hired. I went from literally knowing nothing about the program, to being 100% profficient with it in a matter of 12 hours. His patience is unmatched, and you can tell just by speaking with him that he is truly passionate about the hardware industry, and Ingersoll Rand. Here’s to hoping we all grow up to be just like Bob Harder.

  4. Kevin Braaten says:

    Bob: Thanks for all you have done for us. In all my hardware years, I can’t think of anyone who has had a more positive effect on me. I think back on all those times I called you, in a panic,thinking I had really broken it this time. But you just said,”Let me in there and see what I can do to fix it.” You always did and you saved me again and again. Bob, put your feet up and relax a bit. Enjoy retirement.
    Kevin

  5. Kevin Taylor says:

    Bob,
    I truly want to thank you for the help and support you have given me in my 6+ years with IR. You were certainly a calming influence when issues arose and thing were tough (not that it ever really happened!!!). I hope you enjoy every minute of your retirement as you have certainly earned it.
    But I will be honest (and I know I share this thought will ALL the other Spec Writers), I will not be unhappy to see you back with us some day in some capacity if things get boring in your retirement.
    Thanks again for everything, and good luck with all you do!

    Kevin Taylor

  6. Sean King says:

    Bob,
    Thank you for everything you have done to make writing specifications easier on all of us. I could not possibly imagine having a better person to help me along the way when I started with the company. I truly hope you have tons planned to enjoy retirement because it is so well deserved.

    Cheers!
    Sean King

  7. bruce young says:

    Bob –
    Congratulations. You surprised me by being able to get this “old dog” to learn new tricks. I thought that I was a good employee with a great work ethic, but I am just average compared to you. I agree with Lori’s comments and wish that I could have been there to raise a glass in your honor. (I will do that later today!) I hold you in the highest regard as a AHC, fellow employee and last but not least, a good man. Have a wonderful retirement and a long and happy life. God bless you.
    Bruce

  8. Mohammed Salim Ishaq says:

    Bob,
    We will miss a big helper of SSC’s Dubai.
    Thank-you for all your help and support and i wish you the very best in your future life.

    Mohammed Salim.

  9. Pat UpdeGraff says:

    Bob,

    It has been my great pleasure to work with you the past 9 years. You were always patient when I needed help and always quick to reply. I will miss you terribly but send my best wishes for to enjoy your retirement. You earned it! Take care and always know how much we all really appreciated you.

    Pat

  10. Kurt Roeper says:

    Bob,
    Best wishes to you in all you do going forward – it was always a pleasure working with you.

    Lori – this is a great tribute to a man who has contributed immensely to not just IRST, but the industry at large!

  11. Greg Thomson says:

    Bob,

    I thank you for all of your hard work, and wish you the best for a long and enjoyable retirement. You’ve certainly earned it! It has been a pleasure working with you over the years. Your dedication to the IR team, and incredible knowledge of all aspects of this business are second to none. Your contribution in helping us improve as a team is completely immeasurable, but very much appreciated! All the best to you and yours.

    Sincerely,
    Greg Thomson

  12. Jim St. Pierre says:

    I was one of the very fortunate to have worked with Bob and Mark in the DHC and Specworks infancy days. Can you imagine, for us to start a job we had to drive in to the office with 3 ½” floppies in hand, start the job on the server, which was in our office, copy the files to the floppy, drive home and write the spec. But it didn’t end there. After the spec was written submitted and folders made, we drove back to the office, same disc in hand and uploaded it back on the server so the office could record it and make job folders. And from there it grew.

    I was so fortunate to be able to attend the retirement dinner and to write something on the back of Bob’s poster. I understand that if they invited everyone who feels like you and I do about Bob to his retirement celebration we would probably need Staples Center to host it. 🙂 Very few people in any industry can say when they leave that their vision not only changed a company, but an entire industry. Moran and Harder did just that.

    Bob has been my boss, my co-worker, my competitor but mostly my friend for over 20 years. In that time he has always made himself available to his customers and the people he worked with. Never saying no. Never showing frustration. Always the pillar of patience.

    Thanks for giving everyone a chance to express themselves and say good-bye to one of our industry giants, and our friend.

  13. Dan Harder says:

    Dad,

    I aways knew you were the best at what you do. To read all the nice comments about you and your legacy is very impressive. You make me very proud Dad, you always have. You continue to inspire me to be the best I can be
    at my job and in life. You have taught me kindness, respect and the willingness to keep striving to do my best.

    Thank you dad, I am continually great full for who you are. Very proud of you dad.
    Congratulations on your retirement. You deserve it. I know you will be missed.

    Love,Dan

  14. John Gant says:

    Bob,

    THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

    This always seemed to be my reaction after completing one of our calls. Seemed only fitting that my post would start this way. I cannot count the number of times you bailed me out of a jamb, usually around Midnight. I realize that my Midnight was “only” 9pm for you. You made it as if responding to tech crisis at 9pm was no big deal, when in reality all of us specwriters know it was the very opposite.

    You have been ALWAYS been there to correct that issue and get me back on track.

    Best Wishes for whatever direction your retirement leads. I am torn, I realize I am being complete selfish when I hope it is in some capacity back with us, but I also hope you get to enjoy your well-deserved retirement as well.

    Thank you for everything!

    Best wishes,

    John Gant

  15. Don Baker says:

    Bob,

    I never would have guessed you were born in 1942! Your energy and passion toward our company and industry is amazing. I have enjoyed crossing paths with you over the years and wish you a long and rewarding retirement.

    . . . Don

  16. Don Funsch says:

    When I first started using Specworks, Bob helped me more than he will ever know. The one thing with Bob, even if you could not get it to work or wanted it to do something new, Bob would figure it out. But the most important thing about him is that when you were talking to him he would listen and make you feel that your little problem was the most important thing to him. He treated you as an equal and did not talk down to you.
    Thanx for being you
    Don

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