With the airplanes certified and new airplanes rolling off the line at regular intervals, it was hard to find a company with a closer knit group of employees. With the successes the company was achieving, people were proud to work at Lear Jet.
I thought they should be able to show their pride. I knew of a company in Ligoneer, Indiana that could silk screen T-shirts and I ordered 600 printed in four varieties, all with a diagram of the Model 23. Some just said "Lear Jet", some said "my dad works at Lear Jet", some said "my mom works at Lear Jet", and last "my dad flies a Lear jet".
I posted order blanks on all of the company bulletin boards. They were up for about 3 hours until the head of personnel Ken Farrel, learned of their existence. He gathered them up and marched into my office and threatened me with my job if I pulled another stunt like that.
Ken was the kind of guy...I doubt if his mother even liked him. No nonsense, stern, unfriendly, he may have been the first to start taking the fun out of the company. A big change from his predecessor, Adrian Pavlick.
Adrian was the first head of personnel. He was friendly, easy going, and fit into the Lear life style. His approach was different than most. If there were a dozen gals applying for a secretarial job, he would hire the most attractive. Adrian did a nice job of decorating the offices. Bill Lear did not mind, he too had an eye for attractive gals. Pretty girls sitting around enhanced the image of a young dynamic company.
Unfortunately, Adrian left to run his own employment agency. Ken Farrell joined the company and I am stuck with 600 T-shirts taking up room in a spare bedroom. Then I get an order from Bill Lear Jr. in Switzerland for 1 each size large T-shirt that says "my dad works at Lear Jet". But Junior, the shirts that say my "dad works at..." only come in children sizes. I had to special order one size large shirt for Junior.
Eventually they were all sold at the gift shop in the airport terminal. It would be years before the T-shirt craze would hit in America...even longer for anyone in the company to recognize the promotional value of wearing apparel.