General manager, Acorn-Gencon Plastics
Jacqueline Morovati, 46, is general manager of Acorn-Gencon Plastics in Chino, Calif., a unit of Morris Group International. A native of Bay City, Mich., she and her family have lived in Los Angeles for the past 30 years.
From 1997-2009, Morovati owned and operated her own 15-press injection molding facility, Universal Plastics Injection Molding Inc. in Santa Fe Springs, Calif. She regularly can be found on Facebook and Instagram, speaks Spanish and got her bachelor's degree in accounting from California State University, Los Angeles, in 1992.
Q: What was your first plastics job and why were you interested in the industry?
Morovati: As I was attending CSULA, I needed a job to cover my tuition. I got a “temporary” job in customer service at Bridges Plastics Co. in Montebello, Calif. I loved the industry so much and ended up working there for eight years.
Q: What is your greatest achievement?
Morovati: I think my greatest achievement has been the relationship that I have built with my customers. I have been working with many of my customers over 20 years and they have loyally followed me from my original place of employment to my own company (Universal Plastics) to Acorn-Gencon Plastics when I closed my doors in 2009.
Q: What is your biggest failure and what did it teach you?
Morovati: My biggest failure was also my biggest learning experience. When the economy took a dive in late 2008, I struggled to survive but ended up closing my shop in June 2009. I learned that sometimes no work is better than bad (low-margin) work.
Q: What is your current challenge at work?
Morovati: Delegating work to my staff. I sometime tackle too many things on my own so that my staff can stay focused on production.
Q: What emerging technology or market most interests you?
Morovati: I am interested in getting one of the latest high-tech coordinate measuring machines. I am also fascinated with the new high-tech polymers such as anti-counterfeiting resins and shock-absorbing thermoplastic elastomers.
Q: What about the plastics industry surprises you?
Morovati: That as large as the industry is, particularly in Southern California, everyone knows everyone in one way or another.
Q: What is the best advice you have ever received?
Morovati: That in order to truly serve your customers well, you need to listen more and talk less. Often sales people just want to tell their side of what they have to offer the client and they end up not listening to what the customer needs.
Q: Who is your mentor, or someone you look up to?
Morovati: My boss, Don Morris [president and CEO of Morris Group in City of Industry, Calif.], is pretty amazing. He runs 14 divisions and he always manages to know what each and every one of them are performing.
Q: What do you do to relax?
Morovati: In order to clear my head, I love to go running after a long day at the office. I also enjoy Pilates, gardening and do-it-yourself house projects.