Experience Speaks: Cynthia White

  • President of Channeled Resources Group
  • Management style | I see myself as the master strategist.
  • Personal motto | Work hard, play hard.
  • How did you get into the converting business?

    I spent four years with Procter & Gamble out of college, then decided to look around for a different career. My father had three employees at the time and made me an offer to join him as a sales rep. It has been quite a ride since I started.

  • What do you know now that you wish you had known when you started?

    People are what make or break a company. I wish I had done a better job of managing some of our people. I now have had training in developing employees, and think I could have saved a few people that we ended up letting go.

  • What do you most enjoy about your job?

    Two things: I love being in our plants talking with our employees. And I love going out to see suppliers and customers with our sales team. I am not a desk person!

  • Have any management books influenced you?

    Many. I just completed my MBA and read numerous books that have influenced the way I run the business. I recommend studying Michael E. Porter's “Five Forces”; Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In by Roger Fisher; When Cultures Collide by Richard D. Lewis; and Financial Intelligence by Karen Berman and Joe Knight.

  • What is the key to growing a business in a bad economy?

    Diversification. We have focused on diversifying our business for the past five years. Luckily, about two years ago, some of it started to hit. We have done well the last few years.

  • What is the best advice you ever got?

    Focus on the five S's: sales, supply, service, systems, support.

  • What is the biggest mistake you made and how did you fix it?

    In my old selling days, I sold material to a customer who went bankrupt. It was a huge hit to the company and was a naive mistake. I ended up selling the company cash in advance after the bankruptcy and added on 10% above cost for a period of time to make the money back. But, it took a long time to recover from our own loss of cash.

  • What makes you proud?

    I am proud of the service we provide — developing waste solutions for the industry. I feel very fortunate to work for my father, a man I think is the ultimate entrepreneur with his recycling and reuse mentality. It wasn't easy to make a living with his ideas in the beginning, but now we provide a very nice living for 105 employees and their families.

  • Why do your customers enjoy doing business with you?

    Customer service. I think our customer service department is second to none!

  • Do you have a hobby?

    I consider myself a wanna-be athlete. I work out six days a week. I never have time to compete, raising three kids by myself; one day, when they are older, I will!

  • Who is your personal hero?

    My father, Calvin Frost. He continually amazes me with his leadership, ideas, and the fun he incites with those who spend time with him. Every employee loves Calvin; I hope someday they will say the same about me.

About Channeled Resources Group

  • 240 N. Ashland Ave., Ste. 130, Chicago, IL 60607
  • www.channeledresources.com; 800-633-6272
  • Founded 1978; 105 employees
  • 3 plants (Marathon City, WI, plant pictured)
  • Specialization | Coated papers and waste solutions

What's the best advice you ever got? Share your perspective. Write to yolanda.simonsis@penton.com.


Subscribe to PFFC's EClips Newsletter