Deadlines, Stress and Opportunities to Improve

Last week was kind of intense.

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Last week was kind of intense. I left my office in Chicago and flew to Cincinnati, where Gardner Business Media headquarters is located, and spent a couple of days training on systems that are necessary for my new role as Senior Editor. It was a highly productive two days and I’m happy I went, but I have to confess that I was at first doubtful of the overall ROI on the time and expense. After all, I had to give up two days of work while on deadline for the January and February issues of MMT, not to mention other duties. It was a bit stressful—Okay, it was very stressful.

I know that you, dear readers, can relate! There never seems to be a good time to leave the shop floor to go to trade events or conferences, or to enroll employees in training programs, even though it’s for the benefit of your company.

But you must do it.

Customers come first, of course, but if your objective is to serve your customers by providing the highest quality workmanship, optimized production outcomes and money-saving solutions, then you have to invest in whatever will help you stay at the top of your game. Global competition never wanes, and working in silos, apart from the rest of the industry, just doesn’t help to advance operations. We must see and be seen. More often than not, attending trade shows, conferences and business summits is the logical way to do it.

What better opportunity is there for networking with colleagues and our industry’s top innovators? Trade shows provide the best forum for seeing and touching the machinery, components and other products that are newly available. Conferences expose us to new ideas and technologies that help us work smarter, while market experts paint both targeted and broad pictures of our industry and those we serve so that we are prepared for the future.

So take the time and invest in the opportunity to learn new things by attending valuable industry events. If you happen to be anywhere near Knoxville, Tennessee, start by attending the Carbon Fiber Conference, which begins tomorrow and is put on annually by our sister publication, CompositesWorld. Budget to invest in participating at trade shows and conferences in 2016, like Amerimold, The Event for Mold Manufacturing, which will be held on June 15-16 in Novi, Michigan. Plus, sign up for informative webinars on topics important to you.

It’s not easy leaving your plant when there’s work to be done and stress levels are high, but I promise that when you do break away you’ll be glad you did.

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