SPM Inc. recently attended IMTS 2016 – International Manufacturing Technology Show – and was proud to present their Vice President and future successor, Cassie Haupers, as a keynote speaker with Making Chips, the popular Manufacturing podcast with hosts Jim and Jason. They spoke about Swiss machined parts, Cassie’s history with her family’s company, how she has grown up moving through the various levels and parts of the company, from working the machines to working the books, and what her plans are for her future with SPM.
Attending IMTS annually helps SPM understand what new technologies are out there now and on the horizon within the industry. “IMTS provides an invaluable platform to ascertain expertise and share forward-looking ideas,” Cassie said in an interview at the show. At the 2014 show, Cassie brought along two engineers and asked them to find two new technologies for the company to implement the following year, and they did. SPM’s philosophy is that, change isn’t limited to the ideas of upper management. Anyone can make a difference, which SPM strives to ensure their employees know, and this type of thinking is what brings teams closer together and maintains excitement and innovation throughout the life of the company.
How an Emerging Leader Earns Respect
During the podcast, Cassie spoke about the importance of experiencing each part of the company, for the purpose of realizing the intricacies of each process, understanding the employees, and really being able to level with each person and gain their respect. Without that respect, a company will have a difficult time running smoothly and remaining at the top of their game. With the responsibility that goes along with precision machining, it is vital to maintain a positive working environment, especially when planning a major future transition.
Company Vision and Culture
Developing a company vision and maintaining that focus throughout the life of the company, while also adapting to industry and trend changes, is no easy task, and Cassie sees this as an important undertaking which should not be taken lightly. She is also concentrating on taking the culture of the company to the next level, to aid in the delivery of continuously improved results every year.
Big Move and Growth of SPM
Cassie, Jim, and Jason talked a little about SPM’s recent move into a brand new building, from 29,000 sq. ft. to 82,000 sq. ft.! This opens up exciting new potential for future growth, new machines, and new projects.
Women in Manufacturing
Overcoming the challenges of, not only being judged as a second generation leader, but also being a woman (a minority in manufacturing), has been a learning and growing process for Cassie, and has driven her to work harder to know the machining industry inside and out, to ensure her and SPM’s future success. Cassie says that for her to attend IMTS personally, seeing other women working in the industry is encouraging; while women are the minority in this sector, she knows that she isn’t alone.
Listen to the Making Chips podcast with SPM and Cassie Haupers