This article appeared in the August 2018 issue of MiMfg Magazine. Read the full issue and find past issues online.
Change is part of every manufacturing business. The companies that fail to succeed are those that cling to traditional ways even as those around them change technologies, processes, and people. The Cardinal Group out of Hillsdale recognizes the importance of change and, through that, it has thrived during some of manufacturing’s darkest days.
“Successful manufacturers don’t just make a product, they offer solutions,” said Tracy McCullough, president & CEO of The Cardinal Group. “Sometimes to succeed you have to risk failing. You need to be a risk taker — it’s through risk that solutions are found.”
The Cardinal Group (TCG), a fully-integrated precision manufacturer of machined components for the automotive industry and more than a half-dozen other sectors, has manufacturing roots dating back to 1945, and made a name for itself during manufacturing’s last recession for not only getting through it but for managing to more than triple its sales and profitability at the same time many companies were forced to close their doors.
“Even during the really bad times, it’s important that manufacturers of all sizes keep their finger on the pulse of their customers,” explained McCullough. “You need to understand your customers’ sourcing strategies and their challenges in order to develop and offer solutions that will speak directly to their needs.”
Built around a few key principles — Disrupt, Define, Develop, Drive, Deliver, Discover — McCullough and her team have evolved the company from simply machining components to becoming a comprehensive source of service and support for a wide range of industries. Under the current leadership, TCG has progressed to strategically combine cost-competitive and quality with innovative new processes built to deliver greater value to its customers’ supply chains throughout a product’s life cycle.
“We pride ourselves on providing best-in-class deliverables, innovative service solutions and a unique approach to partnering with other companies,” said McCullough. “We aren’t just here to build a product. We want our customers to know that we are dedicated to contributing to their success for the long haul. We can only do this by listening to the voice of our customers and offering products and solutions that speak directly to their ever-changing needs”
With everyone at TCG moving in the same direction, the company proudly strives to exceed the expectations of all of its stakeholders: customers, suppliers and employees alike.
“For me, every day is a new day in manufacturing,” McCullough exclaimed. “We are competing in an ever-changing environment there’s always something exciting to explore, and despite facing incredible pressures, we get to be at the center of industries working through substantive, transformational change. How can you not love this?”