In December of 2019, while “chatting” on Twitter, an unlikely source, Chris Astley-Stone of Burley Appliances Ltd., a UK manufacturer of the world’s most efficient & cleanest wood-burning stoves, gave us an idea. It was an idea that we should host a USA Manufacturing Chat, one similar to their UK Manufacturing Chat. Since this chat is pretty time-consuming to manage, I volunteered to start it but only if I could get some help.
Not only did I get help, but literally, a Team was created. By far, this is one of the most refreshing, purposeful, and productive projects that I’ve ever been involved with. You may ask why? It’s straightforward: our Leadership Group is amazing, and we work very well together. So what makes a Good Team work?
Every single person is unique and has a different set of talents. Initially Jen Wegman of Insight Info Solutions stepped to the plate and wrote excellent recaps. She then started to extend the group to a virtual meeting on LinkedIn. Later, Christine Torres of Graphic Products took over the recap writing until she moved into another industry. Thankfully Julie Basello-Holt of Radwell International-North America took those responsibilities over and she’s just as quick and thorough! All of these ladies have a very good gift for writing.
Ruby Rusine of Social Success Marketing (the reason many of us are even connected on Twitter) also took responsibility. She has a very extensive background in Social Media and uses data analysis to help companies improve their impact. I know this because we hired her for two projects. Ruby is very flexible and always offers to jump in if needed. Last, but not least, Dan Bigger of Optessa-Advanced Planning and Scheduling Software is another important member of our team. He has extensive knowledge of manufacturing, and he is extremely personable. His work ethic is beyond amazing, and he is constantly learning and shares that information. When people work together and understand one another’s strong points they can accomplish many good things.
Perspectives and Communications
All of us have a different life story and outlook on things. One of the greatest things about our #USAMfgHour team is how we communicate with one another. We share our perspectives and connect often. It is extremely refreshing to have such a diverse team. There have been decisions we made together and quickly too. None of our team members are afraid to speak our minds, make suggestions, or lead when required.
There was an incident on Wednesday, January 6th of 2021, at our US Capital. The news was obviously upsetting for many. Dan Bigger called me to see if we should cancel our Anniversary Chat scheduled for the following day. I made a decision to keep the chat going. My thought process was now, more than ever, that we need to unite as people and work together. Dan, Christine, and Ruby trusted my decision. Believing in one another is probably the most important part of making a Team Work.
In conclusion, we are not on this Earth alone. My favorite quote ever is from Shirley Chisolm, “You don’t make progress by standing on the sidelines, whimpering and complaining. You make progress by implementing ideas.”
It takes a good team to do this. We may have different backgrounds, political beliefs, or lifestyles, but our group is proof that teamwork is possible. You can check out our #USAMfgHour Chat every Thursday on Twitter at 1 CST.