- On June 22, 2022
Roger Allen MassMEP Employee Highlights
Roger Allen has been with MassMEP for 6 months as a Project Manager. As part of MassMEP’s team of Project Managers Roger prepares himself on a day-to-day basis to go out into MEP’s manufacturer client base to bring new ideas and assist them in whatever phase of growth they are in on their continuous improvement journey. “It’s always exciting to see exactly how they tick and what great things they’re doing here in Massachusetts, and perhaps regionally and globally. I am also one of MassMEP’s trainers for our Front Line Supervisor Apprenticeship Training. I have over 20 years’ experience in industry, serving as coach and mentor and am able to talk technically about a wide variety of topics. It’s very exciting to be a trainer for this program, and I’m starting my first consortium this week. There are 14 clients from three different businesses that are coming together to participate in this year-long training. Learning is a two-way street – I know I can learn from them, and I can share many of the things that I’ve learned over my 20-year career as well. It’s all exciting work for me,” Roger states.
Roger shares his career path and finding his way to MassMEP. “I always say there’s a lot of luck involved with every step of the path that I’ve been on. I knew of MassMEP because from my past. I’ve worked with a couple of companies that brought MassMEP in at strategic moments to help us out in a few areas in the company’s journey through lean. MassMEP trained some of our personnel to assist when we were bringing on new product lines. When I saw that there was an opening at MassMEP that would allow me to stretch myself, I reached out to them. I’ve been in and around industry and been in and around lean and continuous improvement principles for 20 plus years. The stretch for me was being able to take that and prepare myself to train others. When you’re in the day-to-day daily grind of doing what you do in the business it’s sometimes hard for you to step back and really pat yourself on the back about what you’re doing for the business. Lean and continuous improvement are absolutely those things that you can do to work on the business instead of for it. I can’t say enough about how fortunate I am that MassMEP had an opening at the same moment I was looking to transition into a new phase of life. I saw a job posting on Indeed and it just went from there. There were three different interviews, and there was one new thing that I thought was novel in the interview process. I was asked to put together a presentation and then to present it in front of a team. I had never been asked to do that before.”
Roger continues, “My industry experience is chiefly in the defense, aerospace, and space community. The companies that I worked for built components or systems for all those markets. Two of the three businesses that I worked in were large businesses that were either direct government subcontractors or contracted to those large companies. I’m talking about companies like Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and Northrop Grumman. Over my manufacturing career I’ve done it all. I’ve worked in a paint booth, finished metal, assisted in machine shops, was a rf technician, manufacturing engineer, project manager, and operations manager. In the last company, for three years I wore two hats. I was the operations manager of two of our sites and the site leadership. Basically, I was the executive level point person for our President and VP level leaders.”
With the varied background and experiences in manufacturing that Roger has, he sees that the role at MassMEP is a nice evolution of his career. “I always used that word luck but, yes I’ve been very fortunate. I’ve had my share of very good mentors in the past who brought me on and were willing to take the time. It can take a long time with somebody to really train them, not only in how to do the job, but then in how to think and transition to using those same tools moving forward. I’m fortunate that I’ve had my share of really good leaders and mentors who took that time with me. That’s why MassMEP is exciting for me, so that I can return the favor and pay it forward. I like to make a difference, it all boils down to that for me. Even when it’s tough, even when you know it’s hard to roll over and put your feet on the floor in the morning, if I can say at the end of the day that I’ve made a difference, if I can come home to Lori and the boys and I can talk about something that I made a positive improvement to that day, then I’m more motivated to get up the next day and do it over again.”
Outside of work Roger keeps busy with a variety of hobbies. “I love the history of baseball, so I love baseball. I love being able to go to Cooperstown to the Baseball Hall of Fame to talk to some of the older faces and plaques that you see. There’s so much memorabilia to enjoy. I’ve been a Chicago Cubs fan since 1983 back when they were not a good team. I am a little bit more removed from the sport the older I’ve gotten. For example, I don’t collect baseball cards anymore. Besides baseball, I also love trout fishing, walking streams, and hiking. We recently bought a piece of wooded property up in the Catskills, so that’s my new hobby. When I say hobby I really mean work! There’s a lot to do there but relatively speaking it’s a short trip and only takes two and a half hours to get there. We don’t see our neighbors, they’re that far away. We can enjoy the wildlife and we can enjoy just being out there in the silence of it all. That’s nice,” Roger concludes.
How well do you know Roger? Two of these statements are true and one is not. Can you guess which one?
- I was in the Marine Corps for a little over 10 years before I moved to new England. During that time i was in 14 different countries around the world which was great. The last country I went to was Iraq in 2003.
- I was fortunate enough to live in Hawaii for about three years. I got married out there almost 30 years ago.
- I have climbed three mountains in my travels that are over ten thousand feet in the San Bernardino Mountains in California.