NEW EXECUTIVES - At the Helm
Wolak started with the company in 1975 as an accountant after earning her MBA in finance from the University of Michigan. She eventually worked her way up to CFO and, later, vice president before purchasing more than 50 percent of the company's stock and assuming the role of president.
Her biggest challenge as the year comes to a close, like many other executives, is keeping up with the technological changes in the industry. That's why Wolak has an employee, Rick Rys, whose sole responsibility is to make sure Robot Printing stays on the cutting edge.
"I believe I know programming and technology, but if you get away from it for six months, it changes," Wolak remarks. "People say, 'What return do I get for having him?' My return is that I'm going to make the right purchases with my equipment and his salary easily pays for that. A lot of people make the wrong purchases and spend a lot of money. Then they spend even more money trying to fix it and make it fit for their company."
And even the most aggressive of leaders wouldn't want that.
MPI Label Systems, Sebring, OH
There are seven manufacturing plants that fall under the MPI Labels Systems family and new president Randy Kocher is doing what he can to ensure customers get the best service possible from any of them.
That's why Kocher, who was promoted from executive vice president in May, has expanded MPI's sales force and added a sales development group with an eye on regional sales management.
"General managers have additional decision-making capabilities in order to better service our customers without bureaucratic red tape," Kocher notes. "Each plant, for the most part, has the ability to make decisions to get customers what they want, when they want it and how they want it."