"First and foremost, we said safety is the No. 1 concern. We want all of our people to be safe. And we also knew that we wanted to survive for the long term. So we had to make a long-term plan, while taking into account what our short-term strategy was going to be, because essentially, our cash flow was going to go down significantly, sales were going to go down. And we needed to prepare for that," Callahan said.
MMI was able to stay open throughout the year because some of its customers designated the company as an essential supplier. So MMI chose to maintain the highest level of employment possible, and to use the automotive slowdown to make improvements to its processes, procedures and facilities, to be prepared for future business growth.
MMI continued to move forward with its operational plans, so that it was ready to move when the automakers reopened. That strategy has paid off, and MMI was able to move quickly and capitalize on new business opportunities.
And as a result, even in a pandemic year when many auto suppliers suffered big losses, MMI managed to repeat as a finalist for the Plastics News Processor of the Year award in 2020.
On top of that, MMI is the winner of the PN Excellence Award for employee relations. The company was selected for prioritizing its workforce and workers' safety during the pandemic year, and taking steps to ensure sustained growth and a strong future for the company.
MMI is a custom injection molder with strong roots in toolbuilding. In addition to Saline and Warren, the company also has a plant in Monterrey, Mexico.
MMI is our only 2020 finalist with a big automotive molding business, and that created some special challenges .
Back in March and April 2020, Callahan said the first step when was to go through the spending plan and prioritize … everything.
"We went through line item by line item and we made a list of the gotta haves vs. the nice to haves. And anything that wasn't a gotta have immediately went. We got rid of cost immediately, things like some specialized uniforms, some outside consultants, which were nice-to-haves," he said.
"While we were doing that, we also made a plan and said, 'What is important to the sustainability of the business?' And we said: 'We are an engineering company. We need to preserve our engineers and our engineering staff, our technical staff, that needs to be a priority," he said.