Join us as we meet the Leadership Team of Cimetrix in our “Meet the Team” series.
Alan Weber is currently the Vice President, New Product Innovations for Cimetrix. Previously he served on the Board of Directors for eight years before joining the company as a full-time employee in 2011. He has been a part of the semiconductor and manufacturing automation industries for over 40 years. He spent eight of those years as a Program Manager for SEMATECH, 18 as an Engineering Manager at Texas Instruments, and nearly 10 years as President of his own company, Alan Weber & Associates, Inc. Weber holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Electrical Engineering from Rice University.
What brought you to Cimetrix originally?
I first met Bob Reback in the early 90s when he was working at Thesis, one of the leading semiconductor automation software companies at the time, and I was at Sematech, the research consortium tasked with charting a collaborative path to success for domestic semiconductor manufacturing industry. We were both at one of the early Advanced Process Control conferences, and as we talked, it was clear we shared not just a few interesting days in Dallas, but compatible visions for our respective organizations, basic value systems, and a genuine enthusiasm for working in this domain. We stayed in touch thereafter, crossing paths a few times over the next decade. When Bob took over the reins at Cimetrix and needed to re-populate the Board of Directors with industry expertise, he thought of me… and in 2002 I joined the Board.
Eight years later, after getting to know the entire management and technical team, we all agreed that working inside the company would be an ideal match, and I joined Dave Faulkner’s Marketing department.
What's your favorite thing about working here?
One aspect of the job here I especially enjoy is having a broad set of long-range objectives and the freedom to pursue them as I see fit. This works well both for me and Cimetrix because the current job requirements and my skills and experience are very well aligned.
What do you think makes a great VP of New Product Innovation?
A large part of this role requires an understanding of the technology and market trends that affect our industry, so it’s important to have sufficient breadth and depth of knowledge to see the big picture and spot these trends. International experience is also key, since the industries we serve are increasingly global.
Do you have a favorite quote/saying? Why?
I have favorite sayings for lots of situations, but I suppose the one that’s universally applicable is “Live every day.” This helps me find joy and gratitude in almost everything I do.
How do you deal with challenges that come up in your work life?
I first step back and ask myself the question “What’s the best use of my time right now?” and see if the answer helps me decide what to do next to address a particular challenge.
If that doesn’t work, I ask another question: “What’s the absolute worst thing that could happen in this situation, and what impact would that have?” Then I assess the likelihood of this actually happening… which is usually very small. From this perspective, the fear of imagined negative consequences evaporates, and I can focus on the problem objectively without the emotional distractions.
If that still doesn’t work, I ask myself “How would Mac have handled this?” He was my mentor for many of the years I worked at Texas Instruments, and never seemed to get ruffled by any challenge that would arise… and there were plenty of examples to draw from.
What do you like to do in your free time?
First of all, I don’t believe there is such a thing as “free time.” We all get the same 24 hours a day to work with, and they are all equally valuable! That being said, I enjoy a variety of activities outside the office.
My wife of 40 years, Kathy Allen-Weber, and I enjoy travelling together, whether it’s visiting family in Texas, friends across the U.S. and Europe, or ticking global destinations off of our “bucket list.”
Music has been a big part of my life since I was very young. I sing and play guitar on the worship team at our church, perform with local choral groups whenever possible, and still play the flute from time to time. Kathy and I also like many genres of classical music, and are especially fond of opera.
I also like being outdoors, and Utah’s climate and scenery are ideal for this. I also still play a little tennis, and have recently taken up pickleball!
What's the best thing that's happened to you in your time working at Cimetrix?
One of the best things that happened to us over the last five years was the move to Utah. Both being Texas natives, Kathy and I weren't sure how quickly Utah would feel like home, and were pleasantly surprised to find it was almost immediate. Moreover, moving from a big city (Austin) to a small town environment was like taking a 30-year step back in time—a refreshing transition at this point in our lives.