An interview with Rachel Ciullo, owner of Composite Cutter Technology in Volo, Illinois.
Q: What motivated you to start this business?
A: I have been involved with Composite Cutter Technology since its inception. I grew up watching the company grow and have been involved in all stages of running a family business. At a young age I was eager to learn about PCD (polycrystalline diamond) cutting tools and the metal cutting industries. After earning my engineering degree from the University of Illinois and working at an international manufacturing company, I realized my true passion was to own and operate CCT. It has always been part of my life, and I am honored to help the company be successful.
Q: What is the biggest challenge you face in growing the business?
A: The biggest challenge we face at is being a small business trying to compete with larger corporations and overseas businesses. We are working to make our name as well-known as our largest competition. One of the advantages we have is that once we do business with a customer they stay loyal because they are constantly impressed with the customized machine optimization solutions, tool design, engineering, high quality parts and family atmosphere.
Q: How did the Emerging Leaders program help you meet that challenge?
A: Completing the program was a tremendous benefit in that it helped us face our challenges. The program guided me as I took a step-by-step approach to define our business strategy and our challenges. I clearly saw the big picture and set goals to overcome our obstacles by incorporating the knowledge and expertise shared by our professor and the CEO groups. The class had a diverse group of companies, but we have faced similar challenges at some point in our journey.
Q: What is one tip you’d offer something starting their own business?
A: It is important for any entrepreneur to be passionate about their business. You will spend every moment working on your business and thinking about your business, so make sure it is something you love to do. Seek advice from other professionals to help guide you, and always treat your clients the way you would like to be treated.
Source: Daily Herald