Working for custom injection molder and contract manufacturer Tessy Plastics Corp. of Skaneateles, N.Y., has been Grace Oswald's first foray into the plastics industry. She was interested in the industry because of the "exceptional opportunities" it has to offer.
"Not only opportunities in marketing, but opportunities across the board in the plastics industry," the marketing specialist said.
Oswald mentioned how many of the people she has met have started off in an entry-level title with little to no experience and "have worked their way up into admirable roles in various departments," from operations and engineering to sales and marketing.
"I believe there is endless room for growth in the plastics industry and that's why people seem to love it so much," she said.
"The amount that I have learned in the past two and half years in this position is remarkable," Oswald said. "I have been able to experience and lead marketing projects that I would have never thought to touch until much later on in my career. When I interviewed for the position, I was not entirely set on working for a plastic manufacturer. However, I learned very quickly about all of the great things this industry has to offer and look forward to continuously improving my knowledge and experience."
Oswald graduated from Le Moyne College in Syracuse, N.Y., with a bachelor's degree in communications.
In just three years out of college, Oswald has branded a company with more than 1,400 employees and taken on marketing for two recently acquired divisions. She is currently working on building a new trade show booth and revamping the corporate headquarters lobby.
"I'm proud of how I have adapted to the workload and enjoy learning new things along the way," she said.
"The personal mold that I am breaking is being able to take on more responsibility, learning to have difficult conversations when needed and make more important decisions on my own," Oswald said. "It's a work in progress for sure, but I hope to reach a point where I can always be confident in the work that I'm doing."
Q: What is your greatest achievement?
Oswald: My greatest achievement so far is being able to say that I market and collaborate with some of the most successful medical, pharmaceutical and diagnostics, and consumer companies in the world. Being able to have a hand in everything from everyday consumer products, to saving a life in surgery, is something I'm very proud to be a part of.
Q: What is your current challenge at work?
Oswald: My current challenge at work is continuously finding ways to creatively reach the targeted audience in a B2B marketing space. Working for a contract manufacturer comes with various challenges and restrictions due to customer confidentiality. It can be difficult to share all of the awesome talent and services that we have to offer!
Q: What about the plastics industry surprises you?
Oswald: Something that surprises me about the plastics industry is the various backgrounds that many people have! Not everyone comes from a manufacturing, engineering or processing background. In fact, there are several people that I know who are extremely knowledgeable from a technical standpoint and gained all of their knowledge through hands-on experience vs. structured education.