Throwback Thursday: No Pain, No Gain
Today is my birthday, and although it can stink getting older, it is fun getting wiser, especially when I can share that wisdom with my son and nieces and nephews. One thing I have learned over the years is that working hard and earning something is much better than just receiving it for free. And this falls in line with my throwback pick this week, which I selected simply based on my birth date (just to keep things simple today).
Sometimes we need a little suffering or hard work to achieve something of value or to make progress. This certainly applies to today’s competitive mold-building industry as leadtimes are tighter, customers more demanding, designs more complex, technology more expensive, skilled labor harder to find, etc. However, with the right focus on improving your people, processes and product, you will reap the rewards of a better mold-manufacturing business.
Two years ago, prior to IMTS and the K show, I called out a few industry pain points as well as the following shifts that were occurring in our industry:
Data-driven manufacturing. Shops are beginning to track data internally, analyze it and use it to make decisions in their operations. This involves implementing more sophisticated programs to manage production, track data and perform predictive analysis.
Automation. Continued, or accelerating, advancement and investment in automation is helping to reduce production time in areas that require repetitive tasks, such as electrode and component manufacture, polishing and finishing.
Workforce development. As the market looks towards re-investment and re-creation of local training programs, moldmakers are also looking at technology solutions, like lights-out manufacturing and automation, to bridge the gap.
Market opportunities and diversification. Moldmakers are “looking around” for opportunities to diversify their businesses, leveraging their equipment and know-how to find places to grow their businesses.
These all became topics of discussion on the pages of MMT as well as online and at our Amerimold expo, and they continue to drive positive change today. Take a look at the full editor’s message here and identify the pains and shifts that are still impacting your shop today and then use MMT to find some answers and/or contact me to share your strategies and success stories.