Women in Industry 2018 Spotlight — Melissa Coolidge
To coincide with our annual Women in Industry issue, Supply House Times will spotlight a new PHCP-PVF supply chain female executive each day during the work week in the month of March. If you would like to be included or know of someone who should be included in our 2019 presentation, email Chief Editor Mike Miazga at email@example.com.
Position: Eastern Region Sales Manager (1 ½ years)
How did you get in the industry?
I was working as a buyer for 12 years for a large manufacturer (GTE/Osram Sylvania) in northern Pennsylvania early in my career. My job was to purchase many of the items I now represent in our industry for Matco-Norca. So being familiar with them was an asset. When the position at Matco-Norca was mentioned to me, I felt it would be a good fit and applied to my strengths. Thankfully, it worked out and I’ve been happy ever since.
What do you like the most about your job/company you work for?
I appreciate those I work with the most. First and foremost, the customers I call on are essential to any success I have now and going forward. I enjoy helping them because if I can help them, I can make a difference in what they offer to their customers and contribute to their longevity and success. Inside Matco-Norca, I enjoy the entire team. From the reps I work with, our inside salesforce to the amazing management team, the people I work with day in and day out simply are the most talented and devoted group of people around. It makes a huge difference in sales when measuring productivity. How devoted is your team to your mission? I can assure you, Matco-Norca’s devotion to the customers and each other is priceless. I also have an extremely supportive boss, Scott Bardreau, our VP of sales. Scott guides the sales team in such a positive manner. He truly is a valuable role model to me. When leadership is positive and supportive, it causes a positive ripple to continue down through the organization. I also like to travel. With my position, I get plenty of travel. I couldn’t have the job I do without the support of my family. They keep me centered and understand when I am out of town a lot.
How important do you feel it is to attract young professionals into this industry?
I feel it is extremely important to focus on attracting the younger generation. Our industry is one where manual labor and skilled labor come together to build great things. Young professionals like to know they are making a difference and want a challenge and this industry provides both. Matco-Norca’s diverse product offering keeps me and our reps busy. This would appeal to me if I was a young professional. It’s fulfilling to see how so many of our products are used throughout the United States from waterworks and irrigation to PVF and industrial.
How important do you feel it is to attract women into the industry?
I think it’s equally important to attract women to the industry and the doors are wide open. Hopefully, I can help eliminate the stereotype that this is a male-only industry. I have had nothing but positive involvement with the customers I work with and it’s quite gratifying to know they appreciate what I have to offer. Man, woman, young or old, the goal is to be interested in what you do, have the passion to continue to learn and grow, then set out to do your very best. That’s what it is all about!