Employee Stories: Tim Woods
October 10, 2023
Tim’s Perspective - Adaptability and Growing Deep Roots
Tim Woods is the Operations Manager for the Agricultural Services department at Heartland Bank and Trust Company. Tim’s story with Heartland Bank started in 2003 when Heartland started a formal Agricultural Services Department. Since then, Tim has had an incredible, steadfast journey building his career in Ag Services. What makes Tim a standout employee?
Tim’s friends and family describe him as down-to-Earth, pragmatic, and loyal. He has been happily married to his high school sweetheart, Tesha, for over 28 years. Tesha serves as the Connections Pastor at Jefferson Street Christian Church. They are proud parents of three successful sons and two beautiful daughters-in-law. Their oldest son, Jake, is a Worship Pastor at GracePoint Church and his wife, Malorie, is Vice President of NE Kansas Animal Welfare Foundation. Their middle son, Justin, is an Electrical Engineer at L3Harris Technologies, and his wife, Rachel, is a Small Business Advisor at Dell Technologies. And their youngest son, Jaron, is enrolled as a Freshman at Southeast Missouri State University.
Empty nesters as of August 2023, Tim and Tesha are looking forward to more travel and leisure time—when not visiting their kids—especially if it involves lakes or mountains. They reside in their hometown of Lincoln, IL.
Outside of work, Tim serves on the Elder team at Jefferson Street Christian Church and regularly serves as an usher and Small Group leader. He also serves on the Workcamp for Lincoln leadership team. Tim and Tesha enjoy spending time with friends, reading, playing games, watching movies, and binging HGTV shows.
Before my career with Heartland Bank, I served as Executive Pastor at CrossWay Christian Church in Nashua, New Hampshire after graduating from Lincoln Christian University. After nearly 5 years, my family and I returned to central Illinois, where I worked different jobs and grew my skillset.
My career with HBT started in 2003. At the time, I was working for another employer in accounts payable/receivable. There was a shift in my previous employer’s scope of business, which just so happened to be in an area of growth for Heartland. A former colleague arranged for me to meet with Fred Drake and at this meeting I was extended the opportunity to come join the new Agricultural Services Department (Ag Services).
My work and experience aligned with HBT and it was a mutually beneficial match.
When I started, the Agricultural Department was new. Since then, I have watched my area of the Bank grow, adding roles, increasing responsibilities and areas of expertise, and growing along with our customer base.
Finding My Career Path
I have grown my skills a lot with the Bank over the past two decades. As the department has increased in size over the years, I have had the opportunity to sit on committees and manage small teams, which has shown me the value of hiring quality people, communicating well, fostering a team environment, and delegating tasks.
Throughout my career, Heartland has supported my professional growth and development, including support for additional credentials in insurance and real estate. With that support, I have added a Designated Managing Real Estate Broker license to my toolbox, and I am also a licensed Insurance Producer with Federal Crop designation, too.
Helping Ag Services grow from a startup to now managing over 300 farms and nearly 80,000 acres has taken resilience, steadfastness, and adaptability. I have grown to love and respect agriculture and today I see its fingerprints on everything it touches.
Heartland has in many ways led with entrepreneurial spirit, which has made a space for me to grow personally and professionally. I have also seen my coworkers flourish in this environment. Heartland has invested in me over the long-term. For instance, I earned my first professional license as a Real Estate Salesperson in 2004. Over the past 20 years I have transitioned to a Broker and now have a Managing Real Estate Broker license, yet another area of Agriculture that is growing and in high demand.
Throughout my career, I have shown resilience, flexibility, loyalty, and adaptability. As opportunities became available, I have advanced, taken on management responsibilities, and now partner with other managers and provide oversight for the operations professionals on my team.
Heartland Bank’s Culture
Heartland Bank is a fun place to work that offers a lot of variety. Heartland invests in professional growth and advancement. One aspect of the culture here that I am proud of is our reputation both locally and in the agricultural communities we serve. We have strong, consistent word-of-mouth referrals that have led to a lot of positive business. It is meaningful to be a part of establishing and maintaining those relationships.
The Bank balances innovation with pragmatism.
I am proud to be a long-term employee that continues to enjoy coming into work. It is always dynamic, and every day is different!
Advice from Tim
Grow something that you can be proud of. Watch and learn. I have learned from my own mistakes and from observing
others. Those who are patient and do the right thing are rewarded. If you choose to be loyal, commit fully.