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George F. Martin
Pros – The central Wisconsin mill locations were formerly Consolidated Papers and were known for their innovation and product quality. In addition, the mills were upgraded with the latest technologies so people could innovate. Those days are well behind them after the Stora Enso and subsequent NewPage acquisitions. I hope there's enough of Consolidated left after the debacle of NewPage that they can thrive in the future when unfettered by NewPage.
Cons – The Miamisburg Senior Leaders are arrogant and narcissistic. They came into this acquisition thinking they could do a quick flip and make lots of $$$, then got caught in the market and their own arrogance of not understanding the customers and markets. The central Wisconsin locations have multiple unions, with poor labor contracts. The contracts blanket the mill locations, so change is difficult. Management is unsupported by local HR, who have low skill levels and appear to only be concerned about themselves.
Advice to Senior Management – Let's not waste our time, they are too arrogant to heed any advice.
Pros – Flexible with a strong work/family balance. Organization generally does what is best for their employees. Benefits and compensation are probably slightly above average.
Operations are some of the best in the US and provide quality product that is recognized throughout North America.
Cons – Being acquired by a competitor who has no idea what they are getting into. Very little faith in the new management, that they will have what it takes to run the company successfully.
Pros – CO-workers
local management is very knowlegeable and strong but hands are tied by self serving upper mgt.
Cons – NewPage purchased StoraEnso in 2008. Their management is arrogant and self serving. They have hidden agenda and flat out lie to employees. Most of those working their like the $$ but hate the company.
They went bankrupt in 2011 and treated many long time employees poorly. They are cutthroat.
Advice to Senior Management – Resign before you run the place bankrupt again.
Pros – Good starting salary, convenient location. The leadership was approachable.
Cons – Limited opportunities due to constant layoffs with pending bankruptcy.
Pros – Honest, hard-working leaders who want the business to succeed. Lean Six Sigma (LSS) program provides development opportunities for some of the organization.
Cons – Always struggling financially thus not much investment in development for the masses. (LSS is the exception). Difficult to keep up morale with frequent downsizing.
Pros – Good people and company culture
Cons – Paper industry shrinking and company being bought out.
Pros – Compensation was Ok Old leaderhip
Cons – No Advancement very much who you know there
Advice to Senior Management – Invest in the mills The place is falling apart
Pros – Good pay for the region.
Decent work life balance
Cons – Murky standards by which your performance is measured.
No empowerment - very much a "yes-man" work environment
Terrible management. Its Comprised of individuals who either due to lack of interpersonal skills or of mobility ( deep roots in the area) cannot leave. They seem angry a lot of the time, lack vision, bitter and just generally unhappy. In turn this leads to a toxic work environment.
Advice to Senior Management – Empower your employees. Many on the ground level are extremely hard working, talented people who if given the chance can come up with idea to save the company a lot of money.
Live up to your corporate creed of "Candid Communication" instead of creating an atmosphere where honest communication is discouraged.
Pros – The job pays really well, and the benefits are very good. Most people like the shifts - 12hr rotating shifts for production, M-Th for maintenance, M-F for management/engineering.
Cons – Upper management is absent. Middle management is dysfunctional as it tries to fill the vacuum: rude, disorganized, unprofessional, confused. Front line managers are unsupported, generally good at what they do, but leaving in droves. Hourly workers are completely disenfranchised. Layoffs are common, and the uncertainty creates a poisonous atmosphere. Workers are old, and they care less about the mill and more about getting to retirement; and younger workers are jaded by the recurring layoffs.
Advice to Senior Management – Require mid/upper management to treat all employees with respect; putting up posters about ethics is no replacement for actually acting ethically. The people they disparage have the power to undercut your profitability, and some of them do so. But some of them make decisions that save thousands of dollars every day, even though they know you don't care that they make those efforts. Respect that.
Require HR to understand law and contracts, and to make clear, informed decisions. They're responsible for people's livelihoods, and they don't seem to know what they're doing most of the time.
Be visible, vocal, honest, and predictable. Make strategic decisions that imply that you are planning for the mill's long-term health, rather than that you are preparing to cut and run.
Pros – Training, LSS, and good work structure
Cons – too many meetings, too many people with tenure that held sway over vast amounts of work that often went undone.
Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company
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