Team Stanley Excavating LLC: Aspiring Brothers Realize Long-Earned Independence


For years, brothers Gordon Stanley and Shane Stanley talked about starting their own contracting business to build on their combined 50-plus years of construction experience. They finally made their move in the summer of 2017. Shane quit his job and convinced Gordon to do likewise.

That July, they formed Team Stanley Excavating LLC, and they’ve been busy with projects around Columbus since then. They perform a wide range of work, including:

• Installing/repairing water, storm and sanitary lines.

• Roof drains.

• Cutting in and grading driveways.

• Digging ponds.

• Clearing land.

One thing they were sure of from the start was that they would use Columbus Equipment Company as their equipment supplier. Gordon Stanley was familiar with Columbus Equipment Company because his former employers, including Savko & Sons and Trucco, also used the dealership.

“I was very familiar with Columbus Equipment Company,” Gordon Stanley said. “I was familiar with the service and I knew what I was getting with them. We like to buy local and stay local.”

Since the start, Team Stanley has worked with Cory VanHouten, compact sales rep in the Columbus Branch. “He’s been fantastic,” Stanley said. “Whether I’m renting, buying, or looking, I can call him, and he takes care of it for me. He does all the legwork.”

At first, Team Stanley rented all its equipment, which gave the brothers time to check out various brands. When they decided to buy some pieces, the choice was clear. “We liked Kubota. We couldn’t beat the price or the dependability,” he said.

They first purchased a Kubota KX057 short tail-swing excavator. A few months later, they added a Kubota SVL75 track loader.

“Those two pieces are the bedrock of our company,” Stanley noted. “We work them pretty hard. We use them every single day.” The excavator is the right mix of size and power for digging driveways, water service, and storm sewers. The track loader is an excellent choice for carrying gravel or pipe and for backfilling, he explained.

“For the work we do, they are perfect for us. If we need something bigger, I call Cory and rent something bigger for a day or two.” Columbus Equipment Company has been a one-stop-shop for Team Stanley, which has also purchased attachments and additional compact excavating equipment from the Columbus branch.

“The Kubota machines have been extremely dependable with no service issues,” he added. “We haven’t had any issues in the time we’ve owned them. Columbus Equipment Company does the service on them, and we haven’t had to sink any money into them aside from PM. The service department is great whenever we call them.”

Gordon and Shane got into construction by following in their father’s footsteps. Gordon began as a laborer at Savko & Sons, then became a pipelayer and a foreman. Shane started as a laborer, then became an operator. “We’ve got the bases covered between the two of us,” Gordon Stanley noted.

They each worked at Savko for about 20 years, and today the majority of Team Stanley’s work is as a subcontractor for Savko. “Marty Savko took us under his wing. He gives us any jobs that are too small for him to put a crew on. It’s a win win for both of us,” Stanley said. “It’s almost been like a family company. I don’t know if we’d be where we are now without those guys.”

Team Stanley also works for small customers, including homeowners in the Columbus area. The company’s goal is “to provide the same quality workmanship, learned through years of working at large companies, to the small business and individual.”

The company has been able to find enough work to keep busy in Columbus without having to travel far from their Ashley, Ohio, base.

The company is truly a family operation, with the wives of the two co-owners taking care of the behind-the-scenes paperwork. The brothers are the only full-time employees, and they have a nephew and a few longtime acquaintances available as subs on larger projects.

After years of thinking about going into business for themselves, the brothers are happy with how things have turned out. “We’re happy with the size we are. We fill a good niche in the area, and we’re content to stay there,” Stanley said.

It takes some companies years to find the right niche, but Team Stanley seems to have landed on theirs quickly, thanks to experience, industry knowledge, and dependable Kubota equipment.