Austin English is President of RCF Associates and is an expert in implementing Lean Enterprise practices to improve operational performance. Austin’s successful line operations experience is the basis of his ability to convert business theories into practical bottom-line solutions. His two decades of managing change enable him to foresee problems and assist clients in avoiding potential pitfalls. He has helped transform various organizations in multiple industries as diverse as cosmetics, health care, education, construction, aerospace and shipbuilding.
Austin learned the complex details of managing operational delivery and customer satisfaction early in his career. He managed logistics and developed new processes as he started his operational focus with the largest shipping company in the world. At United States Lines, Austin learned the importance of discovering and closing gaps in the fast growing business. He then used these lessons to start and build a successful information technology company before returning to a large corporation.
For over nine years with United Technologies Corporation, Austin embraced and applied Lean Enterprise concepts as he progressed through management roles in Materials and Operations. He was Plant Manager of a Carrier facility and ultimately served as General Manager of a Pratt & Whitney business unit. This provided Austin an opportunity to apply Lean tools and concepts on a total enterprise basis. Under his leadership, each unit improved from a critical bottleneck to a showcase of efficient processes and significantly improved customer satisfaction. Austin left UTC to become Senior Vice- President of Operations at Crutchfield Corporation. There he applied the same continuous improvement tools to the significantly dissimilar environment of retail. This breadth of experience has proven Austin’s ability to produce and improve customer focused products in most any type of environment from the design center to the sales group. In each of these instances, he has embraced the same philosophy – spotlight the customers’ needs, define the products and then focus on the process.
Austin founded RCF Associates Incorporated in 2001. He has built the firm’s reputation by applying the same concepts in his business that he advocates in his clients’ businesses. He focuses on creating value for his clients through practical, custom solutions that are immediately implemented. His advice has been sought after by organizations in various industries ranging from shipbuilding, aerospace, healthcare, education, modular construction, and building products. English’s clients have consistently become repeat customers.
Austin is a graduate of the Unites States Merchant Marine Academy where he excelled in academic, athletic, and class leadership endeavors. He graduated with a BS in Marine Transportation, a commission in the U.S. Naval Reserve and a US Coast Guard license. From the University of Virginia, he earned an MBA at the Darden Graduate School of Business and an MA in Foreign Affairs at the School of Arts & Sciences. He has also received training from the premier Lean Enterprise training institutes and has spoken, as a Lean expert, at academic institutions and industry conferences.
A native of Georgia, Austin lived all over the United States prior to settling with his wife and two children in Charlottesville, Virginia. He enjoys woodworking, organized sports and outdoor activities with his family
Connie Dato English is a career expert, dedicated to assisting business executives, drawing on over 20 years of professional experience. She imparts practical, actionable advice and structure for people in transition and enables them to effectively communicate their value to potential employers. Connie assisted over 2,000 MBA alumni in various aspects of career management and transition during her 14 years with the Alumni Career Services center at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. During that time she also developed relationships with hundreds of employers, connecting them with valuable talent. Connie was a Visiting Lecturer at the Darden School and taught Personal Career Assessment and Career Management in the acclaimed MBA program, as well as an annual Career Transition Workshop for alumni and specialized workshops including Re-entering the Workforce and Professional Image in the Age of Social Media. In addition, she is a certified Profilor 360 coach.
After graduating from the US Merchant Marine Academy, Connie was a consultant with Booz Allen Hamilton where she was a key player in the development of an executive search practice serving the maritime industry. She returned to school at the University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business Administration earning an MBA in 1991. She then worked as a Corporate Strategic Planner for PepsiCo in their Purchase, NY headquarters evaluating strategic issues for the corporation and modeling financial performance of the divisions. Connie moved to take on the role of Human Resources Manager at JM Huber Corporation in Commerce, Georgia. There she helped drive change through the organization, decreased turnover and streamlined the hiring process. In 2001, Connie returned to Darden to counsel alumni in all stages of career transitions. In 2015, she left Darden to join RCF Associates and broaden her coaching practice and engage more closely with a broad range of organizations. In addition to serving her private clients, Connie is a member of the Association of Executive Search Consultants' BlueSteps Executive Career Services coaching team.