Rock Products

JUN 2013

Rock Products is the aggregates industry's leading source for market analysis and technology solutions, delivering critical content focusing on aggregates-processing equipment; operational efficiencies; management best practices; comprehensive market

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FEATURE for accuracy in taking orders; ensure timely delivery of products to the job site; and by communicating changes, problems or issues with customers in a timely manner. As part of customer service, plant managers must be good listeners and have the ability to communicate clearly with employees and customers. They should strive for excellence in all areas, have a positive attitude and be creative when circumstances change. In addition, team building, safety, housekeeping, com‐ munity image and employee buy‐in or ownership of projects and programs were pointed out as important el‐ ements to be improved upon if success is to be achieved. However, it was determined becoming a world‐class op‐ eration was an attainable goal. They had in place moti‐ vated plant managers, drivers and other personnel who were up to the task. World-Class Quality Control In the past, plant and other managers received very little education or training in management skill development. As a result, there have been employee conflicts, produc‐ tion and delivery problems and a high turnover rate at the plant manager level. Providing managers, at all lev‐ els, with tools to help them perform their jobs in a more efficient and effective manner is key to mitigating these problems and moving to the next level. Becoming world‐class in Quality Control seemed to be straight forward. Those involved in quality control need to be honest, knowledgeable and strive for accuracy in mix designs and test results. They must document their work accurately and be proactive rather than reactive to ensure problems or issues with products are minimal. Being responsive to customers' needs or requests is as vital to project success as is the need for quality control staff to communicate with them (customers) and plant or project personnel. World-Class Sales Department The management team indicated those involved in sales and marketing must, first and foremost, be professional, approachable, have a positive attitude and be responsive to customers' requests. Secondly, they (sales staff) need to have a thorough knowledge of company products, customers, competitors, projects and future jobs. Having above average communication skills and the ability to deal with both internal and external customers are keys to moving sales to the next level. The management team, after evaluating the current op‐ erations, identified several processes that they believed would move them down the path to creating a world‐ class organization. Among them was providing manage‐ ment skill development training to managers within the organization. World-Class Delivery Team (Drivers) The company's drivers and mixer trucks are two of the more visible components of OMG Midwest operations. To move the company up to a world‐class level the man‐ agement team agreed they must project a positive image in the communities in which they are located. This can be accomplished by coaching drivers to keep their trucks clean; by helping them keep a positive attitude; ensuring they exhibit a pleasant demeanor at job sites; and mak‐ ing certain they follow all environmental, safety and traffic rules. Ensuring company drivers understand the importance of the job they do and the value of customers are key elements of this process. Also, drivers must understand the significance of com‐ munication when doing their job. Problems at the job site, issues with contractors or similar things need to be discussed with plant or project managers in a timely manner. Moving toward team development and owner‐ ship of jobs, projects, plant sites and programs will move truck drivers to the world‐class level. After reviewing the data, several common themes or is‐ sues were identified as problems or areas which needed to be addressed. These revolved around the need to de‐ velop management and communication skills, improve attitudes, understand financial aspects and increase knowledge about all "operations." 18 ROCKproducts • JUNE 2013

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