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SMA Transforms Their Leaders While Transforming Their Business


SMA offers over 50,000 agricultural-related parts to customers across the United States. They do this from four distribution centers strategically located in Jonesboro, Arkansas; Corsicana, Texas; Des Moines, Iowa; and Fresno, California.

The Challenge

SMA, Inc., has grown both organically and through acquisitions for several decades. The company was experiencing some growing pains from a recent acquisition and engaged AEDC Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions, part of the MEP National Network™, to help them develop a strategic plan to help the leadership team focus and prioritize organizational energy and resources. Additionally, many of their leaders had been promoted based on technical ability and company leadership recognized the need to invest in training these individuals how to lead effectively.
Our years-long relationship with AEDC Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions is one of the most important assets we have at SMA. They have helped us tremendously in high concept areas like mission, vision, purpose, and strategic planning, as well as the nuts-and-bolts of continuous improvement, employee engagement and leadership training. Indeed, there's hardly any facet of our company that AEDC Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions hasn't touched, and their involvement with our management team and employees has helped us drive our business on a host of strategic and tactical levels. We are a much better company for having AEDC AMS on our team.
— Blant Hurt, General Manager

MEP's Role

AEDC Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions (AMS) worked with the leadership team to create a simple, easy-to-administer strategic plan with the top 4-5 strategic initiatives identified, as well definitions for the organization's mission, vision, and values. AMS facilitated quarterly review sessions with the executive team to help them stay focused on the plan and update it as needed to keep it a living document. Part of the focus of the planning process was measuring employee engagement and planning strategies and objectives to improve engagement at each level of the organization.

Additionally, AMS conducted extensive leadership training with the executive and warehouse leadership teams through their TLI (transformational leadership improvement) approach. The AMS TLI approach to leadership development blends traditional classroom learning with 360 degree feedback, on-demand virtual learning, personality/style assessments and individual coaching to help leaders truly transform.

Created February 4, 2023