Tammy Straw, Entek Extruders' marketing and business development manager, has the unusual ability to both create a vision and identify the extreme detail needed to achieve desired results.
"Tammy is the first professional I've worked with who is strong in both [talents]," said Linda Campbell, director of sales for Lebanon, Ore.-based Entek Manufacturing LLC, which does business as Entek Extruders. "Our very successful NPE2018 exhibit is proof of her skills."
Straw's multifaceted creative position requires wearing three different "hats" — marketing, business development and inside sales — and managing the time each one takes.
"I enjoy each aspect, but at times it can be challenging to balance overlapping priorities," Straw said.
She explained her NPE role: "I had full responsibility for planning and executing Entek's presence."
Straw developed and obtained approval for the budget, created the request for proposal and negotiated the contract for the builder of the 2,000-square-foot booth, arranged for transporting equipment and ordered necessary services and hospitality items.
Her duties included training 17 Entek employees, including seven NPE newbies, for various exhibit duties and "being on the show floor during move in and move out" in Orlando, Fla.
She was born in Grants Pass in southwest Oregon in December 1971 and grew up in Beaverton, a Portland, Ore., suburb.
She graduated from Oregon State University in Corvallis, Ore., in 1994 with a bachelor's degree in business administration. Her study emphasis was marketing and she had a minor in Spanish.
After graduation, she worked for a year in Beaverton as an office manager and then in North Carolina for a year.
For the next three years, she and her husband, Greg, lived in Germany during his military service in the Army.
"During that time, I worked for the government and a government contractor on the base," she said.
Straw joined Entek in 1999, became sales and marketing assistant in 2000 and then business development and marketing assistant in 2010. She was promoted to marketing and business development manager in 2016.
"I've wanted to be in marketing since my first classes in college," she said. "I had no preconceived notion of what I would be marketing, but I'm pretty sure twin-screw extruders were not on my radar!"
Straw has learned on the job.
"My biggest failure was soon after I officially became a leader," she said. "Our team was growing, and I was responsible for the training of our newest member. I was excited and shared all the information I could. My failure was assuming that other people think and process information the same way I do."
Straw's method of teaching was not what the team member needed. "My lesson was that when it comes to leading people, it is my responsibility to understand what the team member needs from me and adapt to each individual," she said. "It taught me to appreciate the uniqueness of each person and how together we make a well-balanced team."
In nonwork hours, she spends time with her husband and their two dogs, socializes with friends, camps around Oregon, reads and travels. They have a 5-year-old female chocolate Labrador Retriever named Moka and a 1-year-old male yellow lab named Buddy.
Read more about Women Breaking the Mold, and find links to other profiles.