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Celanese Speaks

Perception Can Be the Elegant Missing Key 

I have for a while now successfully replaced TV watching with watching TED videos. It makes me feel virtuous, although I do spend equal amounts of time on the couch — and by extension — not exercising.

Recently, one particular stream of thought spread across a few videos resonated with me strongly. It is this notion that often times what you should be solving for is the perceived problem and not necessarily the “described” problem. Let me give you a few examples (courtesy of TED and my own experiences).

Example: Six million pounds were spent on Eurostar to reduce the transit time between London and Paris by 40 minutes. For 0.01% of the money they could have instead put Wi-Fi on the train making…

Celanese Speaks

Ask Yourself Three Questions When Managing Processes for Productivity and Efficiency 

To effectively and efficiently manage a process, one needs “end to end visibility”.  Too many times, we “compartmentalize” ourselves, do our own little piece, and toss it over the wall to the next person, without seeing the full process or understanding the objective.

I once lead restructuring in one of Celanese’s largest manufacturing facilities. It involved five individuals, three from the same department that had no idea what the other was doing.  Each week, one individual collected quarters…

Celanese Life, Celanese Speaks

Busy and Loving It 

This is always a busy time for marketing professionals because there are many trade shows. As marketing communications manager for Celanese Emulsion Polymers, part of my job is the organization and oversight of our trade shows.   I was in India, Russia, Germany and Las Vegas – all within four weeks this year.  And, I loved it all. Well, maybe not that cancelled flight out of Delhi at 3:30 AM, but I digress.  

Trade shows are critical activities in our integrated marketing communication strategy to build awareness of our company, bolster our brand initiatives and communicate our…

Celanese Life, Celanese Speaks

Innovation Tastes Sweet at Celanese 

Frankfurt – Last week I was in Europe visiting with employees and customers. I met many talented people and am learning more about Celanese’s innovation capabilities. I like what I see. The teams there are enthusiastically developing solutions for customers that address the needs of our society today and in the future.

Take beverages for example. In 2011, five out of the top ten carbonated soft drinks in the US had zero calories thanks to artificial sweeteners. These “light beverages” are gaining popularity because consumers these days want less

Celanese Speaks

Competitive Dynamics Require More From Us in Singapore 

Recently I was in Asia visiting key government officials in China and Indonesia with our Advanced Fuel Technologies (AFT) team.  At the end of the trip, I stopped by our Singapore Acetyl facility on Jurong Island.  The plant has been in the spotlight recently.  Industry conditions and a challenging feedstock position have necessitated the temporary idling of the acetic acid unit.  My objectives in visiting the site were focused on our people. 

Historically Singapore served as our initial gateway to the East.  We launched production in 1997 with vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) and now also produce acetic acid, ethyl acetate and butyl acetate.  The plant has a rich history of process and safety excellence and has been a cornerstone of the…

Celanese Speaks

Trying to “Keep it Simple” (KISS) 

In my 20-year career since leaving undergraduate engineering school, I have run into various forms of the KISS principle many times.  Whether in product design, communications or organizations, the KISS principle states that most things work best if they are kept simple.  Therefore, simplicity should be a key goal of almost any activity.

In Celanese’s EVA Performance Polymers business, trying to make things simpler has been a key driver of nearly everything we do.  When emerging from the tough economic conditions experienced in 2008 and 2009, we had…

Celanese Speaks

The Future is Even More Exciting 

Over the past month, I have had the honor of representing the innovative work of Celanese’s employees. By now, you should have heard about our success at CERA, the Forbes magazine article highlighting TCX® Technology and the recent live broadcast on Fox Business News. Please take a moment to view these links at the end of this blog.

In all these instances, I have been privileged to share the success of TCX® Technology development. Not only was this an honor – but it was an adventure.

Although as CFO I frequently get the opportunity to present to investors and other key stakeholders, I have never been a part of the broader media world as I have been in the last month. Like many, I don’t necessarily like to see myself on video or in pictures – but I am so proud to represent Celanese I couldn’t help but blog about it…

Celanese Speaks

Prioritizing Your Work-Lessons from the Navy Seals 

Typically when our workload increases or timelines shorten, we can easily become overwhelmed and stressed. The ability to prioritize becomes clouded and we run in circles, performing a little bit on each, but never get any single priority complete. Over the past few years, I’ve spent many weeks with former Navy Seals. Regardless of the situation, or location, when they go in to survival mode it’s simple…

Celanese Life, Celanese Speaks

Everyone’s Talking About Natural Gas 

Today I visited our manufacturing site in Clear Lake, Texas. This plant makes a variety of acetyl based chemicals, but it’s gaining recognition for being the home of the company’s latest innovation, TCX® ethanol technology.

The minute I walked in the door I noticed a positive buzz, in part, because employees are proud that TCX® ethanol technology was invented at Clear Lake by a local team of talented Celanese scientists…

Celanese Speaks

Celanese Intellectual Property is Rocketing 

It all starts with great people with the drive and motivation to do the right thing for our company. Our company culture is unique in that everyone is enthusiastically rowing in the same direction. We are one team striving towards the elusive goal of being the best in everything we do. We have been able to achieve more than a 70% increase in IP (intellectual property) activity as a direct result of this can-do culture. This achievement would not have been attainable without the significant understanding, support and trust from our most senior management team, our CEO and even our board of directors. For me, without the significant support from our general counsel, our team of general and IP lawyers and our administrative staff, this milestone would have not have been achievable…

Celanese Life, Celanese Speaks

Welcome to CE-Blog 

Good communications are vital to the success of any business. And today’s social media forums present remarkable opportunities to share information between people and groups. This blog is the start of what I believe will be a dynamic ongoing conversation between Celanese and the people and organizations we interact with. We want CE-Blog to be a place where the perspectives of our leaders, the talents of our employees, and eventually the voices of customers and suppliers, will be heard and seen. We look forward to engaging with you on relevant topics of the day and using this medium to its fullest capability including videos, infographics and more…

Celanese Speaks

The Accidental Lobbyist 

As a kid, I was a huge fan of cartoons. To this day, one of my favorites is “School House Rock.” In fact, like many of my generation, I learned most of what I know today about the US government from the song “I’m Just a Bill.” As Celanese launched TCX®, our new technology to make ethanol from natural gas and other hydrocarbons, I have been fortunate to work with members of Congress to explore opportunities to apply this groundbreaking technology in the US…

Celanese Speaks

Abundant, Affordable Domestic Alternative Fuel to US Consumers? Yes, A Solution Exists Today 

When Celanese introduced its innovative hydrocarbon-to-ethanol technology in November 2010, it was clear that the most attractive fuel markets for TCX® would be those with (1) abundant domestic resources, (2) a desire to reduce their dependence on imported oil and (3) government policies that do not favor one technology over another. It also was clear that the United States is the world””s single largest market for fuel, and the first two of these three criteria applied. The last one is a bit trickier…

Celanese Speaks

CERAWeek 2012: an insider’s view of the world’s biggest energy conference 

After participating in the world’s biggest and most prestigious energy conference as a Partner Sponsor, it was easy to see why CERAWeek 2012 in Houston, Texas, was the perfect venue for getting the message out about Celanese TCX® Technology. The conference was a major step forward for Celanese and our TCX® Technology as we joined energy industry executives and government leaders from around the world; and once the week began, we knew we were right in the middle of a major movement in the energy industry…