Problem solvers

Strategy and business development have become even more crucial in the post-Great Recession economic landscape. According to Deborah Seeger, co-founder and vice president of operations at Brookfield-based Patina Solutions, the new normal has forced many companies to reconsider their business development goals and strategic initiatives on a problem solving level.

Patina’s new Engineering Practice, led by Mark Polczynski, Marquette University’s Engineering Management Program director, can help with those problem solving initiatives, Seeger said.

“What we recognized early on was that there are a lot of business practices that are universal and cross-functional,” Seeger said. “Process improvement initiatives, even certain principals, every company has to acknowledge them and a lot of those principals come out of engineering. Engineering professionals, by nature, are problem solvers and can intuitively identify the root causes of problems and challenges.”

According to Seeger, as companies move out of the recession and into growth mode, they need to address challenges concerning the way they do business.

“They are looking for ways they can advance process improvement, put out products faster and more efficiently,” Seeger said. “A lot of that can be addressed through engineering.”

Polczynski, still a full-time faculty member at Marquette University, has been offering his knowledge and expertise on a consulting basis, Seeger said.

“When order started to return to the workplace and legitimate growth became a goal again companies started looking at ways they could improve their processes,” Polczynski said. “The skill sets of engineers can be quite useful in those applications, and Patina’s model allows highly experienced engineers and strategic thinkers to begin working on those challenges almost instantly.”

As a director of the Engineering Management Program at Marquette Polcyznkski has a lot of experience as a business leader and strategist, Seeger said.

Once Patina determines what challenges or problems its clients are up against, they bring in Polczynski to help decide what type of experience and strategic thinker is needed to get the job done, Seeger said.

“It’s not just how do we design this product from an engineering standpoint, it’s also what is keeping us from getting this product out the door faster?” Seeger said. “What opportunities or other channels do we have for our products? Our clients are pushing for change inside the business process and Mark and our engineering practice will help them get to where they want to be.”

Engineers with Patina have been doing this type of work for 30 years, sometimes more, Polczynski said.

The service provides more than just engineering staffing, Seeger said.

“Our clients can utilize or engineering practice as a problem solving, strategy driven place for facilitated thinking,” she said. “Our engineering practice can help companies make decisions on project management, day-to-day implementation and even a strategic approach to tackle new markets or product initiatives. We’re here to offer companies the flexibility and the experience where they need it and when they need it.”

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