This week, we’re excited to start a new blog series: On The Job, where we’ll take an inside look at Folding Guard with help of our amazing employees who go above and beyond every day to make our company thrive.
To kick off this new series, we went on the job with Tom St. Germain, our Operations Manager in charge of Production, Engineering, Shipping, and Receiving. Tom has been with FG since 2018, and comes from a manufacturing background himself.
He started out in processing in tube mills, moving up into a supervisory role, then over to fabrication, and ultimately to Folding Guard. “My history has been well over 30 years of manufacturing, and it’s been diversified between tube mills and storage, and now of course safety and storage again at a higher level,” Tom says of his career path.
Now that he’s an Operations Manager, what exactly does he do with his day? Tom says that his main job is support.
“My role is to make sure that we have the right team and the right puzzle pieces in place to support the growth, the current demand moving forward [. . .] and of course be the advocate for change and support for my team so that [they] can do their jobs and I can make sure they have the tools in place to do so.”
Tom has a huge operation to manage. All of manufacturing, shipping, and receiving, basically everything in the company that isn’t related to sales or finance, is under Tom’s umbrella. But he says that there’s no such thing as a ‘typical day’ in his job, and that’s one of the things he likes best about it.
Tom jokes that he always gets all of his steps in, as a huge part of his job is interacting with team members around the plant: “Interacting with our sales team to support our customers’ needs, interacting with all the segments and departments that report up to me to support them, a lot of pre-planning, a lot of future planning,” but he continues to say that it varies day-to-day.
Sometimes things will come up that need to be handled immediately and push other projects or tasks further back on his to-do list. Clearly, flexibility and resourcefulness are a big part of the Operation Manager’s job.
Constantly Moving and Improving
We asked Tom what his favorite thing about being Operations Manager was. “Honestly, what I enjoy about this place is it’s 100 miles an hour.” He also said he likes to look for opportunities every day for growth and change to make things better for both our team and our customers. “[What’s most rewarding] is seeing these things come to fruition.”
Tom notes that there have been a lot of changes at FG in the last year, with equipment upgrades and the like. He loves seeing those changes create avenues for people to do their jobs better and improve company culture, so that everyone feels supported and proud of the work they’re doing. In addition to the evolution of his teams and their processes, Tom notes that FG’s products are evolving, as well.
“I think we have a great line of products that can satisfy across the field. [Between] storage, machine guarding, warehouse partitioning, so many different things, I think we are one of the leaders in the field.”
Outside of FG
Outside of work, Tom describes himself as a family man. He loves to travel with his wife and four daughters, as well as watch and play sports and geek out on things like Marvel with them.
As far as his career and the future of Folding Guard? “I think the opportunities are endless. I look forward to watching this company and helping this company grow, [and I’m] just excited about the future.”