Susan Schall is an engineer and executive who is the president, founder and operations leader of SOS Consulting LLC. Set on her path at an early age, Dr. Schall earned a Bachelor of Science in mathematics from the State University of New York. She followed up this degree with a BS and an MS in industrial engineering from Pennsylvania State University. In 1988, Dr. Schall received a PhD in industrial engineering from the same institution. Dr. Schall founded SOS Consulting LLC in 2004, and brought to this venture her long line of experience in technician and management positions in engineering and consulting firms. Since 2014, Dr. Schall has consulted for ABET Inc., a non-governmental organization that accredits post-secondary education programs in applied and natural science, computing, engineering and engineering technology. She has also served in roles as the president of the Pennsylvania State University College of Engineering Alumni Society and the Pennsylvania State Industrial Engineering Industrial Advisory Council. She has provided her services as a member of the board of examiners of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award team on several occasions. Dr. Schall has also been a lay leader and lay servant of the Front Royal United Methodist Church in Virginia.
When Dr. Schall was in high school she thought she wanted to be a patent lawyer. She visited schools and learned about pre-law programs. However, these programs did not pique her interest because they didn’t require math and science which is what she enjoyed. It was her father who talked to a lawyer at his Lions’ club meeting about what could study in undergrad. The lawyer said he majored in engineering. He also said you need to develop critical thinking skills for engineering. Her father relayed this information to her and encouraged her to explore the possibilities within the industry. She looked into engineering (there are over 30 disciplines), and when she read about industrial engineering a light bulb went off. Once she got into it she never thought about law again.
Dr. Schall’s father was an instrumental figure in her career as he taught her to love math. He also was encouraging women to choose a career in the sciences. In addition, Dr. Schall was influenced by her grandfather, who was a carpenter and helped her love buildings. She pays it forward by helping mentor young women. She enjoys mentoring others to have the tools and mindset to always make a difference.
Dr. Schall is distinguished from others as she’s an integrator with the ability to take different tools and concepts and combine them to help with the issue at hand. She is adept at reading whatever is the best solution and facilitates its execution. She works with the clients and has compassion and empathy to set her clients up for success.
Another difference for Dr. Schall is her focus on small manufacturers, as she believes they are being overlooked. Looking back at some of the work she did and its relation to the present, she is able to see the difference her work has made. She wants to be able to say she had a transforming effect on small manufacturing. Dr. Schall recently became certified in The 6 Types of Working Genius, Patrick Lencioni’s newest model that fits extremely well with her other offerings to transform small US manufacturers.
Dr. Schall is proud of the work that she did with her first client, where she brought together data tools that are underutilized. They are elegant in their simplicity. This ties into her belief of wanting to make a difference in organizations and for people who work in the organizations.