Skip to main content

A Chat With Mike Jett, VP of Honda Precision Parts of Georgia

Q: Share with us a little bit of your background with Honda.

A: Mike Jett – I’ve been with Honda for 34 years. Prior to moving to Georgia, I was responsible for strategic planning for North America. My group was responsible for the feasibility studies for Alabama and Georgia facilities. However, my background primarily resided on the manufacturing side. My current role – as VP & Plant Manager – encompasses total operations here as far as manufacturing, with a focus on safety, quality and production.  As manager of the entire business of operations at this facility, I drive us towards the core characteristics which we work toward every day. These characteristics include building products of outstanding quality, delivering those to our customers in a way that is safe for our associates and our goal of being a company that society wants to exist.

Q: What is the most rewarding part of your job?

A: It’s working with the people. The Honda Precision Parts facility has some of the best associates that I have ever worked with in my career. I have worked in multiple locations around the country, as well as in Japan. The associates here are very engaged, they care about what we do and how our products do in the market. It’s so enjoyable coming to work every day with a great team. When we are faced with challenges, they respond. As we have gone through expansion, it has been extremely encouraging to me how each associate looks at challenges as an opportunity.

Q: What is your long-term vision for the plant – internally and externally?

A: My vision is to create positive working environment, so that my associates want to come to work. I know that sounds a little utopian – keeping our team engaged in what is going on by having excellent communication, engaging with them on a daily basis to improve our characteristics here, which opens the door for future opportunity at each of our facilities. We want to create outstanding products for our customers, which will also open doors for opportunity.

Q: Since you’ve worked around the world, what are some benefits of working in Georgia. And, what kind of impact can you make in the community?

A: I think southern hospitality and southern culture makes us a little unique. The way I can engage with associates here in Georgia is more personable and they truly care about what we do here. As the largest employer in the Haralson County area, it brings a lot of responsibility as far as doing things with integrity. We want to be an example to other businesses in the area. We take a lot of pride in what we do. One example is talking to the associates about the cleanliness of the plant – both inside and out. First impressions mean everything. We want to keep our facility in top shape all of the time. We want to be involved with what is going on in the community. We are the number one corporate sponsor for the Haralson County Relay for Life. We do other things as well, such as working with the soup kitchen in Tallapoosa, it’s an opportunity for our associates to give back to the community. We had four other locations in mind when we selected this sight. We chose Haralson because we wanted to make a positive impact in this area with an economic partnership.

Q: How are tools such as YouScience helping develop the next generation workforce?

A: There have been a lot of different things tried with regards to workforce development and have yielded minimal results. When I saw YouScience for the first time, I had this vision in my mind how we could utilize YouScience to create a pipeline for future workers. I want every Haralson County student to take the YouScience Profile. Then, we can choose those that are in line with what we are looking to hire. We can have mentors from this plant work with students to get them into the plant to see our operations and get them excited about their future.

Q: What are your interests outside of work?

A: I love to golf and fish. Living in the south also gives me a lot of opportunities to connect with people. I am outgoing, so I am actively involved with our local church. Culturally, I love food from the south. I was extremely impressed to learn that Mac & Cheese is considered a vegetable down here and that you can order it just about anywhere. I like to understand what drives people and makes them tick, and people down here are easy to develop relationships with.

Q: Tell me about your experience in Japan.

A: I was in Japan for two years with my wife and our two daughters, who were only 1 and 4 years old when we moved over there. My family is outgoing and we wanted to learn as much about the culture as we could. We still practice some of those cultures, because of our respect for the community. We were open to trying different things and we experienced a lot of different foods. In Japan, women always walk behind the men and my wife said she was going to create a revolution, because she was not going to walk behind me. I vividly remember that when we went out with a Japanese couple, she would walk in front. Also, working in Japan helped me to understand the Japanese culture and gave me insight to how we could blend the cultures of Japan and the USA to build a successful business model for companies like Honda Precision Parts of Georgia.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Laura Richards | Founder & Chair of the Friends of Carrollton GreenBelt, LLC

Share with us your background that led to you founding Carrollton GreenBelt. I am from Carrollton, but left in 1990 to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Then I moved back in 2009. While I was away, I biked across the United States and then led as a European guide for Vermont Bicycle Touring. That’s when it clicked for me regarding trails. I first rode with guests on trails separated from roads in the Netherlands. There I saw people holding hands while they biked and carrying pets and their groceries to the extent that it became more than a trail, but a really busy public space. Our Greenbelt serves that role as one of Carrollton's newest parks and showcases local natural wonders. It’s a great way to enjoy the great outdoors. What’s the most rewarding part of what you do/have done at GreenBelt? To see the city of Carrollton submit its application to be a bike friendly community was the most rewarding part to me. That designation is through the League of

Laura Boalch, Technical College System of Georgia Q&A

Q: Please share with us your background and how you came to work at TCSG. A: In the mid 1990’s, I began working in the Legislative Budget Office (LBO). In this role, we were charged with the development of the state budget for TCSG (then Department of Technical and Adult Education - DTAE) and various other agencies for the Georgia House of Representatives and the Georgia State Senate. At that time, admittedly, I knew very little about the Technical College System of Georgia as I had taken the more traditional route of attending the University of West Georgia to earn my BBA in Accounting. During my time at LBO, I had the opportunity to travel around the state visiting TCSG campuses. After talking with students, faculty, and staff at the colleges, I soon learned the purpose of what we do at TCSG and why we do it—to supply local business and industry with a skilled workforce. I was fascinated with the mission of the system and the passion of the faculty and staff. I quickly realized th

RKR Planning Services

North Paulding School Cluster How can public school systems make informed decisions regarding the best use of their facilities? At RKR, our Planning Services team has been working to successfully answer this question by taking into account multiple factors such as census data, surrounding school districts, county birth data, home sales, etc, to create custom-designed solutions that meet the specific needs of each school district. For example, with the Polk School District we evaluated individual school enrollment history with anticipated area changes so that a correlation was developed that placed students in their zoned school. The final documents contained easy to read graphs so the data could be interpreted. For the Paulding County School District, our Planning Services team provided projection data to support the staff allocation process, which also helped to develop long range planning opportunities. In addition, a facilities study that we produced for Decatur Ci

Workforce Development

Over the past five years, the State of Georgia has focused efforts on economic development and has done a tremendous job of attracting industry to the state. Now, as we look to the future, questions arise about how we continue to maintain the same level of success. One of the challenges born from a strong economy is the continued lack of skilled workforce. We have heard this theme time and time again, specifically within the construction industry. But, as the Georgia economy booms, what is the state doing to connect its economic development efforts with its workforce development initiatives? And, more importantly, what can we do to change the perceptions and encourage today’s youth to explore careers in manufacturing, logistics, construction and other related trades? As has been the case for years now, businesses are having a hard time finding the right talent for the job. As the years pass, the strain to find talent becomes more real and businesses are left frustrated and unable to

A Conversation with Daniel Jackson & Eric McDonald of the Greater West Georgia Joint Development Authority

Beginning with only four member counties in the late 1990s, the Greater West Georgia Joint Development Authority (GWGJDA) has grown to represent seven area counties, including: Polk, Haralson, Paulding, Carroll, Heard, Coweta, and Troup. We spoke to Eric McDonald, President & CEO of Greater Haralson Chamber of Commerce, and Daniel Jackson, President & CEO of Carroll County Chamber of Commerce, about the collaborative nature of the Development Authority that allows members to work together on multi-county projects to benefit West Georgia residents. What are your current role and responsibilities as part of the GWGJDA? Eric: I am a supporting staff member for the Greater West Georgia Joint Development Authority. We are an economic development and business growth entity responsible for growing the region’s retail and industrial base. The Board of Directors of the GWGJDA is appointed by the respective county commissions. Supporting staff from each of the economic deve