The multi-faceted company Tacony Corporation has recently made strides to ensure its success in the future. To keep up with growth and increased sales efforts, Tacony has implemented a search for a new ERP system. Additionally, Mike McLean has joined the company as Chief Information Officer to support the initiative.
Over the past few years, Tacony Corporation has seen growth in many areas of its business. The company has increased its manufacturing enterprises with the new Maytag line of vacuums and new products from Koala Studios sewing furniture. It has also continued to extend its reach overseas by updating its facilities in China and the United Kingdom. Plus, a new online ordering system is in the final stages to help streamline the process for Tacony customers. To maintain growth within the company, a new Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system will be introduced next year, and the new Chief Information Officer, Mike McLean, will help ensure the new system’s success.
“We’ve been very successful with the basic, very customized software package we have in place, but we are no longer just an importer/distributor. We have added manufacturing, retail, direct marketing, online catalog, and more channels over the years,” Executive Vice President of Tacony Corporation, Kristi Tacony Humes, said. “It’s time to bring our technology up to date with the tools needed to manage a multi-faceted and complex business model today and for years to come. We are happy to welcome Mike and his experience to lead us there.”
McLean comes to Tacony with years of technology experience. From the time he took his first computer class at St. John Vianney High School in St. Louis, he knew he wanted to continue studying information systems. He went on to receive a Bachelor’s Degree of Science and a Master’s Degree in Information Management from Washington University and then started his career in the tech world. McLean’s experiences include the development of an international telephony billing system, integrating a billing solution with call center applications, and leading the development of a fully functional ERP. All seemed a perfect fit for Tacony Corporation’s business plan.
“After a couple discussions with members of the Management Team, it was evident that Tacony was a good fit for me,” McLean said. “I have 10 plus years in the manufacturing/distribution industry. In addition, I have recently led a like company through a very similar transition. I approach every problem from a business perspective and utilize my experience to leverage technology for the purpose of delivering a solution.”
McLean will lead the rollout of new technologies brought into Tacony such as the ERP system, but his executive role will also cover many aspects of the company. “I truly enjoy being involved in delivering solutions/information/reports to employees (internal customers) that assist them with managing their area of the business,” McLean said. He will play a key part in developing a standard approach for supporting all Tacony web applications including any e-commerce and content management.
So far, McLean has a positive outlook at Tacony’s upcoming implementation of the new ERP and other technological advancements. “The Management Team has whole heartedly accepted and is completely supportive of the challenge of transitioning to a state of the art ERP System. In addition, they have involved members of every business entity to be actively involved and committed to the effort,” he explained.
Along with his expertise in technology, McLean has a strong family relationship—making Tacony even more of a fit for him. Just as McLean supports Tacony’s new technology efforts, his family supports his new career path. His wife, children and parents have encouraged him throughout his career, and that’s something the Tacony family definitely understands. Tacony Corporation has been family owned and operated for 68 years. The company strives to build long-lasting relationships with its employees and customers and love welcoming new people to its family.
About Tacony Corporation:
Founded in 1946 by Nick Tacony, Tacony Corporation is a privately held manufacturing and distribution company operating in four strategic business units: sewing, home floor care, commercial floor care, and ceiling fans. With more than 650 associates in 13 offices around the world, Tacony’s mission is to create long-lasting relationships that are based on trust and feel like family.
Check out the full press release here.
With the announcement that Ray Queen, former Baby Lock Vice President & Chief of Sales, was retiring the search to find his replacement began. As Queen transitioned out, Andy Touchette was training to take his place.
The search was not easy, as Steve Jeffery, President of Baby Lock said, “Ray had big shoes to fill.” However, Touchette’s experience in sales convinced the Baby Lock team he was the right person for the job. Touchette comes to Tacony with decades of sales experience. Most recently, he owned and ran a multi-unit home interior store. Before starting that business, Touchette headed a national sales team for a software company, and prior still he headed regional sales teams in the medical industry.
“Considering my last nine years of experience owning and running my own retail business, I believe I understand the independent retailer’s needs,” Touchette said. “I have lived that life. I know how hard it is to compete every day and what retailers need from a trusted partner.”
Additionally, with advances in machine features and software, Baby Lock is essentially offering an entity that Touchette has worked with in the past. “My software and medical sales background make me comfortable selling new technology. With the introduction of touch screens, cameras and lasers in our machines, we are selling technology.”
According to Touchette, the best way to sell technology is through education. In his short time with Baby Lock, Touchette has seen the energy dedicated to educational events for retailers and consumers alike. Touchette’s experience as an independent retailer helps him understand the importance of knowing the ins and outs of products you sell. It also helps him better connect with Baby Lock retailers.
Understanding how to build trusted relationships is a key part of Tacony Corporation and Baby Lock. As the Tacony mission statement says, the company strives to “build long-lasting relationships that are based on trust and feel like family”. This family atmosphere is one reason Touchette was drawn to Tacony Corporation and Baby Lock.
“You feel it all across the entire organization. Egos are checked at the door and the philosophy from Ken Tacony (CEO of Tacony Corporation) on down is ‘How can I help get the job done?’” Touchette said.
This practice of building relationships is one thing that keeps many employees at Tacony Corporation for decades. As the new person in the building, Touchette will bring a fresh perspective to help grow the Baby Lock business even more in the future.
“An organization should always be willing to learn new things and stretch itself. This goes for me as well. If you are not moving forward, you are going backward,” Touchette said. “The velocity that you move forward is going to be determined by the team’s enthusiasm and desire to be the best. I believe this attitude is contagious and I hope to bring that every day…. I look forward to helping our retailers become the best and most profitable retailers in the business.”
About Tacony Corporation:
Founded in 1946 by Nick Tacony, Tacony Corporation is a privately held manufacturing and distribution company operating in four strategic business units: sewing, home floor care, commercial floor care, and ceiling fans. With more than 650 associates in 13 offices around the world, Tacony’s mission is to create long-lasting relationships that are based on trust and feel like family. For more information, visit www.tacony.com.
About Baby Lock:
Baby Lock has been a leader in the sewing industry for over 40 years. Today, the company offers a full line of products that enhances the love of sewing, including technically advanced sewing, quilting and embroidery machines, sergers, accessories and industry-leading Gold Standard service and support. Baby Lock products are sold exclusively through independent retailers.
Numerous celebrities in the sewing industry prefer Baby Lock machines, like Nancy Zieman, host of the PBS television show “Sewing With Nancy”. Similarly, Quilters Hall of Fame inductee, Eleanor Burns, represents Baby Lock’s quilting line of machines. Additionally, Baby Lock machines are on set of Fons & Porter’s “Love of Quilting” hosted by Marianne and Mary Fons.
For more information please visit www.babylock.com
Check out the full press release here.