In baseball, they refer to it as a “Utility Player”. The typically young player does all things well, and is positioned where there is the immediate need on the baseball diamond. It seems that every organization has that one employee, that one individual, that does not have a clearly defined role, yet finds himself or herself placed in so many key functions that support the company’s goals. Our Connellsville facility has such a person. His name is Jonathan Witt.
Jonathan came to PSI in September of 2011, through a temporary agency. His first exposure to the corrugated industry was as a helper in the finishing department. He was soon hired full time, and quickly became an operator on the Signode Unit Strapper. Later, he was promoted into our design department as a sample maker, and finally, to Junior Designer, where he is today. But hold on! Thatʼs still not what makes his position unique to PSI.
Jonathan also supervises our offsite assembly operations for POP displays, specialty assembly & gluing projects, and item kitting/fulfillment by working closely with our sheltered workshop partners. He is often onsite for days at a time. In addition, he has acted as backup for our plant scheduling/corrugated purchasing and even will staff our VMI warehouse at a key account’s plant location. Oh, I believe I even saw him on the “strapper” again last month!
PSI recently caught up with Jonathan, asking him what his thoughts are for being used in so many roles at PSI Connellsville and more…
Jonathan, how did you find yourself being used in so many roles at PSI?
I was always there when something was needed. I never turn down a challenge and always put my best forward no matter what job I am working on. After being given the chance to prove that I can handle many different responsibilities I became the person to go to when something was needed.
Is there one role that you enjoy more than the others?
I enjoy them all for different reasons! Each role comes with its own set of challenges that require different approaches. Being able to sharpen each skill set for each role is exciting and allows me to grow. The wealth of various knowledge and experience that I get working in each different capacity is valuable and often times helps with the others in some way.
Do you see yourself with PSI in 3 years? If so, in what position?
I can definitely see myself with PSI in 3 years. The position I fill in 3 years depends on opportunities that are available and what PSI needs at that time. Naturally I can keep working and growing in the design office developing the craft and still fill in the spots where I am needed like I do now. Possibly in 3 years I may be needed to take on other responsibilities as well.
I understand that PSI is assisting you with college tuition. What is your degree choice?
I never want to stop learning, so if it were practical and affordable, I would have as many degrees as a thermometer! I currently have an AABA that I had earned before I started working with PSI, so I decided before starting for another Associate’s degree it would make more sense to take my current degree further. That being said, my degree of choice currently is a BBA with a specialization in Operations Management.
How will this education assist you with your career growth plans at PSI?
Continuing education in general is good mental exercise that promotes critical thinking, application of knowledge, and communication skills – just to name very few of the many benefits. In this case a BBA will increase my knowledge of different business functions, methods, and philosophies beyond what I currently know, making me a more effective member of the PSI team. The specialization in Operations Management will help me make better decisions within my capacity that will have an overall positive effect on the company.
What have you gained personally & professionally while working at PSI?
I have gained so much from working at PSI it is hard to sum it all up in a short response. Knowledge and experience are among some of the greatest gains so far from my time working here at PSI. I have gained a tremendous amount of knowledge not only about the corrugated and manufacturing industry but also about the many different industries that we interact with on a daily basis.
Professionally I have developed and sharpened skills in communication, time management, decision-making, and technical functions that I had previously not had the opportunity to nurture. Personally I have gained experience that I can always draw inspiration and wisdom from, a new creative outlook, and confidence that I can tackle new challenges successfully and face new responsibilities head on. I have also gained a great family of individuals to work alongside with each day.
Answer this question: People would be surprised to know “what” about the corrugated industry?
Just how complex it is! Corrugated is an extremely versatile material that can be manipulated and designed to serve so many different functions from boxes to elaborate displays and much more.
The process of creating many of the finished corrugated items that people see required a great deal of networking between related industries, artists, designers, etc. I do not think it is so much that these facts themselves would surprise people but more of the surprise would stem from the fact that it is always around us everywhere and is evident in everyday life but what goes into it is not often given any thought. When people see a box, they assume that it had to be made somewhere by somebody– but they do not think that teams of many individuals from sales, to design, to customer service, to production, to even shipping worked together to diligently produce and provide that box with care and pride (especially if they see that PSI stamp on the bottom).
Hey, with all your roles at PSI, do I need to be concerned that you are looking for my job?
Oh no need for concern… I will wait until you are finished with it! Then again I do not know if I want all that stress!
In all seriousness, being involved with the many different functions I have worked in for PSI, so far it is easy to see following any one of those paths more or less based on the needs of the company. So far, sales has not been one of them, however. I am up for whatever challenges come up ahead and look forward to growing within PSI.
In closing, PSI Packaging Services, Inc. wishes Jonathan Witt all the luck and support as he continues to be another “rising” star in Connellsville.
Blog written by Todd C. Ireland, Sales Manager of PSI Connellsville, Pa
', nextArrow:'', autoplay: true, cssEase: 'linear' }); });