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  • Writer's pictureCJ Systems

The Fortitude We Gain Along the Way

Updated: Jan 14, 2023

The wonder. The excitement. The realization. The fear. Every emotion I have ever felt came to life in the dreaming, designing, starting and living of the business. It is hard to believe but CJ Systems, Inc (CJ) will achieve 30 years in May 2024... only 18 short months away - Where has the time gone!

I never would have imagined all the parts + pieces + elements woven together so wonderfully. Nor that ideas can start as collaborative synergies from two very different backgrounds (Automotive vs Healthcare) but with one common foundation – Quality! Nor would I ever have thought we could have experienced ALL that we have –


…From start-ups and working out of a basement where there was little to no elbow room….

…To personal touches with complex techniques which were simplified for regular use by you, our clients…

…To explosive growth of clients necessitating the addition or transformation of our exceptional team members

… To growth across multiple locations (Steamboat, Colorado to Dearborn and Taylor, Michigan)…

…To giving skilled-talent platforms to demonstrate their expertise in grounded arenas (Automotive and the Tier I and II Supply base)… … To exploration in unknown and sometimes intimidating industries (Healthcare and Education and Financial Worlds)…

…To buy-outs and good-byes of longtime, extraordinary colleagues…

…To pandemics and downsizing (Northville)…

…To designing (Website I), building (Website II), now rebuilding (Website III)…

Through it all the challenges, we did it! And the fortitude we gained along the way strengthened us. The experiences we faced gave us the courage and wisdom whole-heartedly,… with love … with passion… with integrity to keep dreaming the impossible… to continue to go towards CJ’s True North.


For herein, lies our greatest success – knowing we could do this and our dreams were possible. And I am sooooo glad CJ did! Tried-and-true corporate behemoths recognized the talent and value-add of our minority-owned small business. They challenged us to push CJ services towards new ideas and models within quality management systems. The automotive industry drove our team members to exceptional performance level, challenging us to craft new ideas, and use fact-based decision making, with established quality tools to create meaningful, timely measures. THANK YOU! Thank you one and all. You have shown us the value of our efforts and our collective vision.


Now we stand on the cusp of our new world. Like a tree that starts out small, today we are deep rooted, strong, innovative and alive. We have constructed small elements using quality tools and techniques (e.g. Customer Focus Definition, Management Alignment with Leaders, APQP and PPAP Analysis) to full-scale, operational quality management systems capable of achieving certification and award recognition (e.g. ISO certification, Malcolm Baldrige Award, Pentastar, LEAN or Six Sigma National Awards). And today we believe that we are just as much students as teachers. And because of this core belief, we want to be share Our Way.


Part of our new world will focus on sharing CJ experiences with you via this Blog. We intend to reveal the good, the bad and the ugly/impossible. For we have seen so much! And there is no reason anyone should have to endure the trials to learn from the experience. We want you to walk in our shoes, if only temporarily, so that we can catapult you to a better, stronger place. We will do this through a 3-way rotational messaging:

1.REAL-WORLD EXAMPLES: Using case studies and national presentations produced by CJ, we will describe the scenario/situation so that you may take them apart. We will outline the problematic process(es) and industries to assist in better understanding the environmental challenges. Tools and techniques CJ designed and used will become stories that will allow us to teach others to fish.


2. THE PHILOSPHY OF IT ALL: Theories and hypotheses drive the scientific world in a very logical and methodical way. But sometimes, life doesn’t function as one expects. Sometimes life throws us curve balls. Sometimes we find ourselves living WITHIN the outlier of everything. This happens in our business lives too. As it turns out, like a real curveball crossing the plate, we can be convinced that the problem is coming at us a different angle than it really is. Things prove tricky till we get to apply a little creativity and diverse thinking to it! CJ systems has had to assist many of our clients in this fashion due to normal conditions like, buy-outs, downsizing, lost business due to pandemics, and much, much more.


3. LET’s CREATE THE POSSIBLE: No one is an expert and knows everything. And the smartest person in the room is the one that asks the most questions not the one providing the most answers. Like a 3 year-old who incessantly ask "why". CJ strives to push itself to new ways, new models, new ideas, new solutions. Where we want to challenge you to think in new ways. Here we want to drive you to challenge us to think-outside-of-the-box. Here will we both function as teacher and student, learning to find new horizons and keep climbing.

So welcome! Welcome to our new world. Welcome to the new war room where the rules are simple – break the rules that are breaking us! Our only promise to each other – let’s commit to achieving higher ground and outcomes through each other. CJ invites you to become part of this new world. We look forward to building our relationship with you, together.

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