Jessica Poliner said she is breaking the mold — in the plastics industry and other previous industries — that "one size fits all in executive leadership."
She previously held global management positions with Ingersoll Rand Inc.'s Thermo King business and various roles in sales, marketing, distribution and operations at Caterpillar Inc.
Poliner graduated from Vanderbilt University with a bachelor's degree and earned her Juris Doctor from Marquette University. She completed graduate work at the University of Buenos Aires and is enrolled at Harvard Business School for a certificate of management excellence.
She has worked as an attorney in corporate and mergers and acquisitions. Poliner has lived and worked around the world, including the United States; Argentina; Panama; India; Belgium; and now Germany, as the president of Barnes Group Inc.'s Molding Solutions business.
This is Poliner's first role in the plastics industry. She is responsible for all aspects of the global platform business, which includes six distinct businesses in the plastics injection molding industry featuring hot runners, molds, controls and sensor technologies. Poliner leads a team of more than 2,000 employees with 15 manufacturing locations worldwide.
She has also authored a book, [Un]skirting the Issues: A Guide for the Well-Intentioned Man in Today's Workplace, and Poliner is a speaker on gender parity and unconscious bias. Poliner is a "strong believer in talent development and putting people first."
Poliner was nominated by Cristina Tuik, vice president of strategic marketing, digital solutions, and customer experience for Barnes Group's Molding Solutions unit, and Daniela Rivera, executive assistant.
"Jessica is a transformational leader with a history of leading geographically dispersed and culturally diverse industrial businesses," Tuik said. "Poliner thrives on taking over challenged businesses and achieving aggressive financial goals while engaging teams around a shared vision."
Q: If you were CEO of a company, what would you do first?
Poliner: Listen, listen, listen — and go to the gemba. Go see the heart of the action!
Q: What emerging technology or market most interests you?
Poliner: Connectivity — eager to see how we can use AI to assist our customers achieve better TCO [total cost of ownership].
Q: What is your greatest achievement?
Poliner: There isn't one achievement that stands. Greatest pleasure is being able to help and develop others, especially talented women as they grow their careers.