ipmmBackground , the newly promoted president of Industrial Perfection Mold and Machine, Inc. assumed leadership of this over twenty year old mold maker after she successfully drove changes on the shop floor and throughout IPMM’s internal operations. Wloszek next recognized the need to better understand her company’s marketplace in order to leverage the company’s increased capacity and more efficient operations. As she said, “We have operated in too much of an internally driven manner and I knew that with an impending economic slowdown, getting more in touch with my marketplace would be critical.”

The Challenge Having worked with Andy previously to develop her succession plan, Wloszek then asked Andy to guide IPMM to learn which customers were most profitable and thus which segments should be pursued. Furthermore, learning IPMM’s best customers’ buying habits and key purchase criteria was critical to drive both IPMM’s internal understanding of their marketplace as well as to future sales and marketing efforts. As Wendy pointed out, “The old way was to wait for the phone to ring which was not adequate seeing that our manufacturing backlog wasn’t being filled at the same rate as shipments were going out. Our challenge was to leverage market feedback and customer preferences to drive sales and marketing forward. I turned to Andy because of how he helped me take sufficient control of IPMM and define my team’s internal roles and responsibilities.” The BGC Solution To meet Wloszek’s objectives and help generate profitable top line growth for IPMM, Andy first focused IPMM’s attention on leveraging the firm’s existing customers. To do this they took the following steps together:

  1. Created a customer profitability analysis to segment and personally choose major customers and segments to interview.
  2. Presented these findings which helped Wendy take the conclusions of the marketplace feedback and refine her growth plan and refocus her organization.

According to Wendy, “The depth Andy’s insight he gained and presented to our management was remarkable. He presented exciting, tough and candid market feedback to the leadership who needed to hear and see what the market was bearing. We became acutely aware that customers not only have different needs but that the types of customers and the nuances of how to communicate to and respond to them makes a measurable difference in our bottom line. Andy’s findings confirmed what I knew we had to do. I needed his unbiased voice to help me drive needed change throughout the organization to create profitable long term growth.”

Results Despite the recession, IPMM’s sales are up 4% and profitability is on plan. “I am continuing to get a return on my investment with Birol Growth Consulting. The thorough presentation Andy made allowed me to give my employees the reality component of what needs to be done to remain competitive in the marketplace. It is my role to give my people reality and let them run with it.” Looking back on his work with IPMM, Andy reflected, “Wendy’s foresight in understanding and leveraging her customers has made a real contribution to her company’s current and future success. I am pleased for her and IPMM that taking proactive steps have paid off in profitably growing their top line, remarkable for a traditional metal shop during this recession.”