Taking advice from American philosopher, William James, Global Quality Manager for Peli BioThermal, Lynaye Reynolds, advises newcomers to be pragmatic, flexible and choose their thoughts wisely
Can you briefly describe your position and responsibilities at Peli BioThermal?
I am the Global Quality manager for Peli/Pelican BioThermal (PBT) where I am responsible for the alignment of the quality initiatives and strategic goals throughout the PBT organisation. I specifically focus on developing the quality culture of our products and services to ensure continual improvement and that offerings satisfy or exceed our customers’ expectations whilst ensuring compliance with international standards and applicable regulatory requirements.
Can you tell us a little about your company’s business activities?
Peli BioThermal’s innovative single-use and reusable thermal packaging products are used by leading global life science industry companies and organisations in pharmaceuticals, biotech, laboratory, diagnostics and military/government sectors to protect and safely transport their most critical temperature-sensitive tissues, biologics, diagnostic, devices and vaccines.
We offer the most diverse and trusted selection of cold chain packaging solutions, worldwide manufacturing and service centres staffed by cold chain engineering experts and provide an easy-to-use web-based asset management service that allows organisations to track individual shipments from start to finish while setting up automated reminders for key logistics processes.
The Chronos range of single-use shippers utilises advanced insulation and phase change materials to give reliable temperature stability
How did you get into your business?
I started my quality career with a global medical device company ArjoHuntleigh, Getinge Group, where I led quality and compliance initiatives for manufacturing and logistics. In May 2015, I joined PBT as the local UK Quality Manager and was subsequently promoted to Quality Manager EMEA. I have recently assumed the position of Global Quality Manager.
What’s the one tip you’d give to anyone entering your industry?
The temperature-controlled packaging industry is ever advancing and exciting. My tip would be that you must be able to be pragmatic and react to the developing market, adjust to customer requirements and ensure compliance with specific standards and regulations.
What is your greatest strength and greatest weakness?
My greatest strength is the ability to be highly effective in a fast-paced environment whilst maintaining attention to detail. A greatest weakness, my partner tells me, is never switching off (well, almost never).
If you could revisit your former self, what advice would you give her?
I would quote a famous American philosopher, William James: “The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.”
What trends are you seeing in your industry at the moment?
The trend in our industry is definitely reusable products and services, as this a relatively new element to the temperature-controlled packaging industry. The other aspect that is trending in our industry is preconditioned temperature-controlled packaging and distribution.
How do you think Peli BioThermal will respond to disruptive challenges such as increased automation and globalisation?
For us and everyone, Brexit is a big consideration, potentially affecting international trade, sourcing raw materials from Europe and, likewise, exporting finished goods the other way. However, PBT is fortunate as we have a wide range of products sold all over the world and a secure global supply chain. Automation is forever on the increase and we have a cross-functional team that’s keeping up to date with the newest technologies to see how/if we can utilise them.
What are the biggest challenges faced by the industry at the moment?
Within the next couple of years, more than 50% of newly approved medicines will be biopharmaceuticals. Beginning in 2010, a number of major biotech medicines have come off patent and are technically facing biosimilar competition, which will be creating greater demand for the temperature-controlled packing industry.
Biopharmaceuticals have a fragile nature: being highly complex protein molecules, they are potentially very sensitive to enzymatic action during formulation and production. Their biological activity depends on their structural integrity. This evolution in the biopharmaceutical industry presents its own supply chain challenges when it comes to the safe storage and transportation of these temperature- and time-sensitive pharma products.
More global clinical trials are requiring stricter temperature regulations, which command compliant cold chain conditions and increasingly innovative packaging solutions. Temperature restrictions when transporting these pharma payloads present their own challenges, coupled with the fact that more are being shipped to emerging markets where there are also extreme temperature ranges to contend with.
As a global organisation, we are endeavouring to ensure that the products we offer are innovative and fully able to react to evolving market requirements. In our current industry, environmental impacts are becoming more visible, with the use of Kraft, corrugate, EPS, etc. Pelican is striving to improve our recycling initiatives and focus on reusable innovations.
If you could invite any three people to dinner, who would they be and why?
Eleanor Roosevelt: A revolutionary first lady, Eleanor Roosevelt was one of the most ambitious and outspoken women to ever live, especially given the era in which she lived. Although she was both criticised and praised for her active role in public policy, she is remembered as a humanitarian who dedicated much of her life to fighting for political and social change, and as one of the first public officials to publicise important issues through the mass media. To be in her presence would be a privilege.
Gandhi: He was the leader of the Indian independence movement against British rule. Employing non-violent civil disobedience, Gandhi led India to independence and inspired movements for civil rights and freedom across the world. He accomplished fantastic and unprecedented changes and was able to do this without having to resort to violence or aggression. We all could learn so much from him, how you face challenges and overcome those challenges and adversity without having to become aggressive and violent.
Stephen Hawking: Obviously a revolutionary by his own right and also did what many scientists are unable to do; despite his physical condition and restrictions, he connected with millions of people to disseminate his excitement for science. He made people think: “Wow, I want to learn about science,” and engaged people’s minds throughout all ages. There is so much that goes beyond the cosmetic and he is great example of this.
I think from these three people, although they are at such a higher level than I could ever hope to be, you can learn so much from their life and apply it to your own day to day life.