Manufacturing Award winners point to varied paths of success

PBN runs eight recognition programs in the course of the year, and this week’s edition of the paper contains the special section for the Manufacturing Awards.

These programs help PBN learn more about the businesses and people in the region who are flying high. Often the stories uncover companies that have been hiding in the shadows for years, and reading about them leaves us excited for the future.

But just as often, the major value of the sections and the stories they contain is what the program winners can teach us about our own businesses. For instance, this year’s Manufacturing Awards honoree for Leadership & Strategy is Tia Bush, the head of Amgen Inc.’s Rhode Island operations.

Ms. Bush started at Amgen out of school and has never left, not that she has been stuck in one place. Her posting at the company’s West Greenwich facility is her second tour here, and its success supports the company’s decision to put her in the position.

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The secret of Ms. Bush’s success is listening. She lives the current call in business to work collaboratively and is not afraid to get her hands dirty in service of the greater goal.

Two other winners – Toray Plastics (America) Inc. and The Town Dock – also pay great attention to their staffs. For Toray, it takes the form of a robust effort to educate and train its workers. Town Dock has instituted lean manufacturing, which relies on employee engagement to work.

They know that the greatest value added comes from taking full advantage of the human capital they employ. And that is a lesson we all should keep in mind.