Volume 15 Number 9 - September 12, 2017


Employees come to work for a paycheck, if that's all they receive. But if they contribute to making the world better, they come to work with passion and focus. The distinction? Simply the demonstrated vision of your company to make a real difference.

Do you think "vision" is an MBA term that doesn't apply to the down and dirty world of manufacturing? You'd be wrong. You can run a company that "is in the plastics business" and has no greater purpose than making money for the owner, but you can't expect anyone to care about it. There are dozens more just like you.

So why plastics? Because your father was in it? Surely you want a more meaningful impact on the world than doing what he did. Plastics originally came from nature, but most are now synthetic made from hydrocarbons. "Plastics" was memorable business advice from the movie "The Graduate" but has become viewed as a scourge on the environment. "In the plastics business" is hardly an attractive recruiting slogan.

But those in plastics can have a vision far greater than making and selling plastic objects. A focus on reducing the negative environmental impact is but one potential aspect of your vision. How can your plastics business make the world better than it would be without you?

I'm not picking on plastics. It's just an easy example of a product line that some owners say is so basic that there is no real vision behind it. Don't just tread water. Create a real reason for your business to thrive, and fuse the passion of all those involved in its success into an undeniable force.

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.

Why Problem Solving?

The Starting Pistol

William Jennings Bryan:
"Destiny is no matter of chance. It is a matter of choice: It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.”

The Tape

Rebecca Morgan:
"Without a meaningful purpose, your company will wither; with a vision that matters, commitment and constancy can bring it to life."

September 19–20: San Jose, CA: The Lean Product and Process Development Exchange is hosting its North American conference to share ideas and experience to streamline your time-to-market and strengthen the financial success of your innovation. There are pre- and post-conference offerings on the 18th and 21st.

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.

November 27–29, 2017: Berlin, Germany: The 13th annual European Manufacturing Strategy Conference will be held in Berlin this year. Speakers include your peers from a variety of multi-national and European based manufacturers. It's a great opportunity to get global perspective on your operations strategy.

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

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