Meet Ian Fletcher, one of our CNC Grinder/Programmers at our GWS-MI facility in Grand Rapids, Michigan since 2015. 

Ian first came to the manufacturing and machine-operating world by accident. He went to what he thought was a job interview at a local machine shop, but it turned out to actually be a 6-week training program. Once the program was completed, the company found interviews for the participants, and one of Ian’s interviews was at what was then Alliance CNC. He found the work to be interesting and quickly took to his new environment and coworkers. Ian had quickly begun his career in the cutting tool industry and knew he had found his place.

When Ian first started, he found that he had a knack for troubleshooting any issues that may arise from any of the many machines used in manufacturing cutting tools. He got so good at it in fact, he was able to successfully predict potential problems and find solutions before they could hamper the manufacturing process. After working on both first and second shifts, as well as training fellow coworkers on our machines, Ian decided he wanted to learn how to use our more advanced machines. Ian was up for the challenge and has become a vital part of the team, always eager to continue growing his knowledge in the many processes used in manufacturing cutting tools.

Ian always strives to go above and beyond to ensure our customers receive high-quality tools in a timely manner. There have been many times when he has stayed late, ensuring that an order is completed and can be shipped out on time. Since he has previously worked on both shifts, Ian is known to come in and work an extra shift if an order needs to be completed. He is happy to be known as a reliable machine operator that never backs down from any challenge or problem. A motivating factor in helping drive Ian is his work environment. He has several mentors available to him, including his General Manager Fred Edmonson to help guide him when the need arises.

One of Ian’s favorite aspects of working for GWS-MI is how no two days are ever the same. Working on both standard and custom tools keeps him focused each day. He enjoys taking a complex blueprint for a custom tool and working with our engineers to design a machine path to create exactly the tool the customer’s application requires.

Life Outside GWS

After working with machines and manufacturing tools at GWS during the day, Ian goes home to his two young daughters and wife.

When asked what one of his passions outside of work is, Ian lights up and mentions his love of playing disc golf. He has been playing for over 10 years and actively participates in competitions throughout the year. His 3 year old daughter also loves to play disc golf, and often tags along with her dad for time on the course. Ian also enjoys playing basketball at his local church and bowling when he finds the time. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to be in his regular bowling league this year since he was welcoming the birth of his now 8 month old daughter. Come next year though, he’ll be ready to help his team beat out the competition!

Other than keeping busy playing sports with his family, Ian likes to cook and grill, but sticking to a recipe is not his way of doing things. He has his own way of cooking, especially his famous chili. It turned out so good, he even won a chili contest! Ian also enjoys traveling, whether it’s visiting his large extended family in Eastern Michigan, or going to the Gulf Shore or Hilton Head Island – anywhere but the cold!

Interested In A Career At GWS Tool Group?

If you enjoy working with dedicated people like Ian, consider applying to GWS Tool Group. We are always looking for talented and driven individuals to work at our facilities in Florida, California, Illinois, Arizona, Michigan, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Wisconsin and Canada. Browse open jobs here.