Volume 15 Number 7 - July 11, 2017

What is Your Employee Loyalty Program?

I continue to fly United more than I would like since they abandoned their Cleveland hub. The reason is simple. My gold status gives me advantages I don't have on other airlines. If the convenience is similar, I'll take United every time. Yes, even after a doctor got beat up and a child had to sit on his mother's lap for hours. They treat me well in person, and on the premier phone number I use.

You probably have status with airlines and hotel chains, and enjoy similar perks. One that hospitality businesses emphasize is welcoming the arriving member with appreciation for their loyalty. Your business may have some kind of customer loyalty program too. If you do, I hope it's founded on relationship and not on price. It's a mistake to encourage customers to value lower prices over top shelf service.

As familiar as we all are with customer loyalty programs, there are very few employee loyalty programs. The gold watch at 25 years is a joke. Longevity-based raises encourage a focus on money rather than opportunity, meaning, and enjoyment.

As Industry4.0 enters our lives, and it is doing so now, we need to hire reliable learners, develop them, and keep them. Hiring a CNC operator might be nice, but technology is changing so quickly that someone who wants to learn and is comfortable with math is likely more valuable long term.

In most manufacturers the majority of employees work in operations, be that engineering, production, warehousing, supply chain or other. As we fret about skills shortages and turnover, it's time to quit doing what we've always done.

Your assignment for this week, should you choose to accept it Secret Agent style:

  • examine your hiring, managing and retention processes for ensuring willingness and ability to learn, provision of opportunity, meaning and enjoyment, and commitment to earning the loyalty of your employees.

Most of you will detect weaknesses that require correction. No one can afford "warm body" thinking.

Transforming Operations. Transforming Business.®

Let's discuss how Manufacturing Greatness can help you become a better manufacturing operations leader. Additionally, my latest book, Start Smart, Finish Strong: Forging Your Path to Operational Excellence and Long-Term Success in the Manufacturing World is available at Amazon, Kindle, and iBooks.

Am I Your Kind of Consultant?

The Starting Pistol

Sun Tzu:
"Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.”

The Tape

Rebecca Morgan:
"Operations cannot be strictly tactical and support the business vision; it must have both aligned strategy and priority tactics."

July 27, 2017: Akron, OH: If reducing time to market is so important, why do so few manufacturers slice R&D and product development times using lean principles? At Goodyear, lean thinking has enhanced the flow of creative ideas from inception to market launch, has created the capacity needed, and has significantly increased the speed of the process. It also has improved quality and enabled Goodyear to release 1,500 new products or SKU's globally every year on time and on target. The process is duplicated in all 3 of their international innovation centers. Learn about Lean Driven Innovation at its finest.

August 10, 2017: Youngstown, OH: If you haven't visited the America Makes Additive Manufacturing Center in Youngstown, it's time you did. This full one-day event will share current conditions of materials, equipment, quality control and opportunities in this evolving manufacturing technology. If you still think it's only for prototype small plastic parts, you are way behind! Benefit from those taxes your company pays.

September 13, 2017: Los Angeles, CA: Digital manufacturing is the future for many of you. Operations, Product Management, and Engineers should be up-to-speed on the Digital Transformation underway. This one-day conference co-sponsored by SME is a great opportunity to connect and learn. And that's what the digital transformation is all about.

October 9–10, 2017: Detroit, MI: Your tax dollar at very important work in supporting manufacturing. Invest 2 days in this LIFT Design the Difference conference. Highlights will include optimization driven design methods, the evolution of the user experience, and the impact of disruptive trends on simulation.

October 9–13, 2017: Boston, MA: AME's annual conference is in Boston this year. Over 2,000 of like-minded operations leaders and followers will be there. Check out the workshops, tours, keynotes, and practitioner presentations.

October 15–17, 2017: San Antonio, TX: The annual APICS conference will host over 2,000 of your supply chain and operations peers. Supply chain excellence doesn't just happen. Leaders make it happen by aligning with proven standards and practices. The journey to excellence is clear. If you haven't attended this recently, perhaps you should.

Check out the Events page on our website for more information.

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