Does your local Walmart or grocery store utilize self-checkouts? Do you remember when they were first introduced? Was it a big deal?
For many the introduction of any new technology is a big deal. A friend of ESE commented that when he visited his parents in rural Wisconsin that the recent introduction of self-checkouts at their local Walmart was the talk of the town. Many were upset about it due to the lack of personal touch, the longer lines (as some people refused to use the self-checkout registers), and the worry that automation was taking jobs away from people who needed them.
January marks the start of a new year, so we thought we’d look ahead and provide “10 Thoughts for 2019” from our talented team here at ESE. We hope you find this perspective useful as you consider plans for the coming year and hope that you continue the conversation with us in the months ahead.
Keith Fraleigh is the new President and CEO of ESE. We recently sat down with him and asked him a few questions.
You’re only a few months into your new position as president & CEO of ESE. Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
I grew up in Omro, Wisconsin (just west of Oshkosh) and have one brother and one sister who are twins. I earned my BS in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Madison in 1984, and my MBA from Marquette University in 1996. I spent the first 10 years of my career in sales at IBM; then worked in business consulting at Arthur Andersen until 1997. Since then I’ve started up service lines-of-business within two different IT remarketers and ran both a marketing services company and a manufacturer of emergency communications solutions. I met my wife Julie in college. We married in 1985 and have four children, who I am happy to report are now all off the family payroll.
The business environment at ESE, Inc. is engaged and purposeful during the year, so it can be challenging to pause for a moment and reflect. Now is a good time to look back and take stock of the opportunities, changes and successes experienced as we enter the final month of the year.
Several of ESE’s employee-owners had the opportunity to attend the Packaging Expo in Chicago this year. We caught up with Craig, Adam and Cory and asked them to share a few thoughts about the show. After walking the trade show floor and speaking with attendees, they commented on a few trends:
October is Employee Ownership month so it makes sense to post a blog on the fact that ESE is an ESOP company. Many questions surround what an ESOP company is and what the benefits are of working for or with such a company. Let’s answer a few.