Mander Collision & Glass celebrates nearly 20 years
Plans second location for Brookfield


By KAREN STOKES - Special to Conley Media

August 10, 2019

                  

Mander Collision & Glass is celebrating 20 years of service in Waukesha.

Submitted photo

WAUKESHA — Mander Collision & Glass, an institution in Waukesha, is an independent and family-owned facility known for state-of-the-art auto body repair that has served the area for nearly 20 years.

In 2000, Randy McPherson founded Mander Collision & Glass at 1604 Manhattan Drive. Mander employs a staff of 30 and his son Nathan now runs the day-to-day business.

“Growing up, my dad taught me the business,” McPherson said. “He would buy cars and I would help him fix them up and get them ready for sale, so I literally grew up working on cars. At the time I was thinking I’m not going to do this for a living but it ended up being a wonderful career for me.”

Randy McPherson wanted to honor his father when he started the business so he named the business after his father, Mander McPherson.

Much has changed in the auto repair industry since McPherson first started working on cars.

                                   

Four generations of the McPherson family: standing, Nathan McPherson and Randy McPherson and seated, Nathan's children, Emma and Ethan McPherson, and Mander McPherson, center.

Submitted photo

Technology has gradually transformed it. There’s been a major move in auto innovation including self-driving cars, accident avoidance systems, and automatic braking.

“It’s become a high-tech industry and we need highly trained and certified technicians and equipment to go with it,” said McPherson. “It’s not the backyard industry it used to be with fans in the window. We spend a huge amount of money every year updating equipment and training.”

Although technology handed some challenges to Mander, it helps their customers.

A convenient, quick quote system on Mandercollision.com is available. Customers need only fill out some information and upload a photo of the damage to get a quote for most auto repairs.

Another challenge is employees. Though traditional college enrollment rates in the United States have risen, there’s been a decline in vocational education. The dip created a shortage of skilled workers and tradespeople, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

“We have a lot of long-term tenured people who have been with us almost 20 years, but there’s more people retiring than coming into the business,” said McPherson. “We are taking in some young people and teaching them a valuable trade.”

Even with the challenges, the future looks bright for Mander. In September 2019, the business will expand to a second location in Brookfield.

“We want to organically grow as we continue to bring in good people and expand our business to five or six locations in the Greater Milwaukee area,” McPherson said.

The love of cars and helping people has been passed down through generations. Manders is part of the community.

“Four generations of McPhersons, a local family business that tries to care for families,” McPherson said.