Meeting Jonathan Mapondera – Group Technical Manager

As part of our Meet the Team series, we chat to Jonathan Mapondera, Group Technical Manager for Reedbut Group and learn more about his role with us.

Tell us a bit about your background and life before Reedbut

I started my career in Zimbabwe and initially worked in the tobacco industry. I moved to the UK in 2001. I then worked in a wide range of sectors, permanently and subcontracted, until Reedbut employed me in 2006.

What is it that interests you about working in the corrugated board industry?

When I started work at Reedbut, I never thought working in the corrugated board industry would be interesting and fun. You never know what’s around the corner; we have customers from a very diverse range of sectors who present me with endless challenges adapting and modifying our machinery to maximize efficiency.

What do you see as the biggest challenges of working in this industry?

Inevitably, when the pandemic appeared, we had no idea how it would impact our business and, indeed, everybody’s personal lives. The whole team was under immense pressure as online shopping soared, as did the demand for eCommerce packaging. Alongside this, our customer’s environmental consciousness demanded we do more, and we do it better; of course, we rose to the challenge!

What is your business mantra and why?

“Solving the problem that others can’t see”.
As an engineer, everybody in the business will reach out to me with their operational problems, most often issues they can’t resolve by themselves. So, I, quite simply, have to fix the problem, issues our customers usually remain blissfully unaware of!

What is a typical day like for you at Reedbut? What does your job involve?

You never know what to expect; often, the most important machine is the one that’s not working. I’m always on my toes supporting and coordinating our operational team and the maintenance team. We must all meet our customer requirements on time, every time.

What drives you professionally and personally?

Professionally – constantly learning and not being afraid to take on new tasks; I really don’t like to fail.
Personally – I am self-motivated; I know what I want.

Tell us a fun fact about you?

I am a real family man, blessed with three girls, so it really makes no difference to me as I get home; I still get told what to do!