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Young professionals are a vital asset to the precision machined parts industry, and it is important to acknowledge those who are making strides toward shaping the industry’s future. Production Machining is recognizing our industry’s young talent who were nominated by their peers through our new Emerging Leaders program.

We surveyed shops and suppliers to find individuals under the age of 40 who are making a difference in the precision machined parts industry, both in their business and in the manufacturing community. The recipients were chosen based on leadership and potential leadership, whether within their own companies or with involvement in the industry.

Production Machining will select a certain number of people in the precision machined parts industry each year who are striving to be the next generation of leaders and innovators and recognize them in the magazine. We will start the 2019 process early next year, so watch for information in our magazine and on about how to nominate the next Emerging Leaders.

Jami Massey, CEO, C&H Enterprises

With a title like CEO of her family-owned business, one might assume that Jami Massey reached her lifelong goal of becoming the head of the company by always being focused on the business she was born into. But that is not exactly the case for Jami. In fact, for a long time she wasn’t convinced that working for her parents’ company, C&H Enterprises, a Silicon Valley precision machine shop with customers in the semiconductor and aerospace industries, was what she wanted to do. But like many kids whose parents own a business, she dutifully worked at the company while in school. Jami started out in the administration department while she attended junior college, and she moved her way up to a position in the quality department, eventually becoming quality manager.

In that position, Jami brought the company into the 21st century by writing the procedures and elements of C&H’s quality management system. She also persuaded C&H employees to understand the importance of this procedure and explained that it was something they all must follow.

“Jami did an excellent job in convincing C&H employees that this was a new wave in the future of the company,” says Stephen Spacher, director of sales and marketing at the company. “She demonstrated her leadership and communication skills by being an excellent listener with obvious empathy that made employees feel they had been heard.”

Without intentionally searching for a position at the company, Jami says she felt comfortable in her quality management role. “Processes are what I appreciate the most about the business, so working in quality fit well for me,” Jami says.

At that time, she was also interested in ISO certification, so under her lead, C&H became ISO 9001 certified and AS 9100 certified for aviation. Even after completing this accomplishment, which took more than a year, Jami went back to school, still not ready to settle down in a career in manufacturing. She earned a degree in human development.

While continuing working at C&H, it didn’t take long for her to come to the realization that she truly enjoyed working in manufacturing. She leapt from her position as quality manager to an executive position with the company. Although her human development degree seems unrelated to manufacturing, Jami says it has helped her immensely with her people skills and dealing with many personalities within the company and in the industry.

Last year, Jami became CEO of the 120-employee business that she has grown to love.

“As CEO, she continues to provide the motivation and energy to drive the company to new levels of production, while always taking care of the customer,” her co-worker, Stephen, says. “Jami is always considerate of her demands on her employees, and she makes sure she has given them a goal that can be met.”

Jami says she loves manufacturing because she enjoys the challenge of discovering what customers really want. “We start with a block of material, and oftentimes the customer doesn’t know what they want, so there are design elements to it,” she says. “There are so many creative minds that I work with that have to figure that out. They not only have to do it right, but also efficiently. I love being around thinkers as well as the collaboration and allowing people to use what they know and encouraging them to grow.”

In her first year as CEO, sales at the company increased by 29 percent. “Jami always has an eye to the future, looking for new technology and better ways of doing things,” Stephen says.

Jami believes that the customer drives production, and only an extraordinary team determines success. Her strategy includes integrating her philosophy into the manufacturing industry that attracts ambitious leaders and creative thinkers under a collaborative framework. “This employee-based approach, coupled with the latest technology in machinery, robotics and data software, will stimulate development and growth within the organization, leaving a lasting impact in the industry.”

According to Stephen, it is a pleasure to work in a company with Jami at the helm. “She loves sharing her ideas and always enjoys a good laugh when things get too serious,” he says.

To nominate an Emerging Leader for our 2019 awards, visit this link

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