Richard Baron enjoys helping small business owners bring their dreams to life. His expertise in three areas – industrial engineering, sales/marketing, and sustainability – provides practical know-how that allows manufacturers to bring products to market in ways that are efficient and affordable.
“Early on, I loved machines and making things,” explains Baron. “Today, I enjoy helping manufacturers develop methods to make products affordable.”
Business success requires good communication between the shop floor and sales office. In diverse roles from project manager to international sales manager, Baron launched new products, established distributor networks, and developed international sales markets. He understands sales and knows how it must connect to manufacturing.
“My experience has given me a deeper understanding of all aspects of business and how to bring them together efficiently,” explains Baron. “I have always been driven to make a process as lean as possible from cradle to grave.”
Baron’s drive for efficiency is a requirement of business today. As the Director of Sustainability at Northern Arizona University and the building manager of a LEED Platinum-certified building, Baron learned how to conserve electricity, gas, water, and waste in ways that impact the bottom line – whether the facility is an office or factory floor. “Everyone must do more with less. This is the new normal. Efficiency and sustainability are required,” says Baron.
Baron knows what it takes to get a business up-and-running and remain competitive. He has secured over $3.5 million in grant money; the largest grant from the Economic Development Administration allowed entrepreneurs to become start-up companies. As the founding President of the Northern Arizona Center for Emerging Technology (NACET), Baron helped new companies position their organization for long-term success.
Baron, who has done business in over 17 countries, understands the global perspective manufacturers must have of their market – as he says, “Competition is no longer down the street; it is around the world.”
In addition to his work with Arizona MEP, Baron currently shares his expertise as a committee member with the Sustainable Economic Development Initiative (SEDI) and was a past board member for the U.S. Green Building Council. He is certified in Lean Manufacturing and Supply Chain Management. Baron has a B.S. in Industrial Engineering, a M.B.A. from Arizona State University, and a Master of International Management degree from the Thunderbird School of Global Management.