Experience Speaks: Randy Nebel

  • President of Longview Fibre Paper and Packaging Inc.

  • Management style | Loose-tight. Delegation with accountability.

  • Hobbies | Traveling and scuba diving in the South Pacific.

  • How did you get into the converting business? After majoring in chemical engineering at Montana State Univ., I started working in the brown part of paper, manufacturing boxes and bags. My 31 years of experience includes organizations such as Weyerhaeuser, Georgia-Pacific, and James River.

  • What is the biggest threat to the converting industry now? Reducing carbon footprints and recyclability of products is important to consumers and an issue as an industry that we need to continue to improve upon.

  • What is the key to growing a business in a bad economy? The key is to be the low-cost producer. Everybody in the organization has to be focused on the same goal of keeping costs low.

  • What management books have influenced you? Good to Great by Jim Collins and Danger in the Comfort Zone by Judith M. Bardwick.

  • What's the best advice you ever got? There is no limit to the good that can be done if you don't worry about who gets the credit.

  • What is the biggest mistake you made in business? My biggest mistake in business was not moving quickly enough. If a company is not moving forward, then it's falling behind. You have to ask yourself, “Am I moving fast enough to make myself uncomfortable?”

  • What keeps you up at night? Safety. We have worked to improve our safety record, but we are always striving to do better. I also worry if we are changing fast enough.

  • What are the key qualities of a successful leader? Set expectations face-to-face and make sure employees know they will be held accountable.

  • What makes you proud? Longview has not been given a single challenge that we have not achieved.

  • Do you have a personal motto? Nothing replaces persistence.

  • What sustainability efforts has your company made? Longview is one of the largest recyclers of old corrugated containers in the Western US. Responsible sourcing has earned us certification from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative for our paper mill and box plant products. We reduced water consumption by one-third since 2005 and cut total greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by more than half from 2000-2008. We joined The Climate Registry, a nonprofit organization that sets standards to calculate and report GHG emissions. We are the first pulp and paper mill in North America to have an inventory certified under The Climate Registry requirements.

About Longview

  • 300 Fibre Way, Longview, WA 98632; 360-425-1550

  • www.longviewfibre.com

  • Founded in 1927; 1,700 employees

  • 1 pulp and paper mill; 7 converting plants

  • Specialty | Kraft paper, containerboard, corrugated boxes

Subscribe to PFFC's EClips Newsletter