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MakingChips | Equipping Manufacturing Leaders

MakingChips is a weekly podcast that will equip leaders in the metalworking manufacturing industry with valuable content to utilize in their career and business.
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Now displaying: Page 7
Jul 22, 2015

Why are employee annual reviews a bad idea?

 

It’s not the idea of having a meeting with employees that’s a bad idea, it’s the verbiage we use to describe what is happening. An “annual review” or “evaluation” has a top-down implication that puts the employee in a helpless and often defensive posture. They are going to be evaluated, rather than a much more positive approach that could enlist the employee in their own performance improvement. In this episode of Making Chips Jim and Jason speak again with Karla Dobbeck, a Human Resources specialist who is focused on the manufacturing industry. Karla shares her preferred approach to what she calls “Proactive Discussions” that actually get the employee involved in their own evaluation and improvement to create a winning team across the board.

 

Do you know what questions to ask during an employee review?

 

First, did you notice we said, “questions to ask” rather than “things to say?” A successful proactive employee discussion should be couched in terms that encourage employee interaction and show great interest in the employee’s well-being and future. You don’t want to grill your employees or make them leave the conversation feeling scolded or critiqued. You want them to leave feeling helped and motivated toward improvement. That means you’ve got to show interest in them and their approach to the work they are doing by asking questions. That approach has a greater chance of creating a win-win situation for everyone. Find out what kind of questions you need to ask in your annual reviews… oops, proactive discussion - on this episode of Making Chips.

 

There are two types of conversations employers need to have with employees - and they are not only done annually.

 

Do you know what they are? Do you know why you should shoot for having them more than annually, like a typical “annual review?” Here they are - performance conversations and behavioral conversations. What’s the difference? Let’s start with the behavioral conversations:

 

Behavioral - These are talks you have with employees about specific behaviors they are guilty of that need correction or modification. Examples could be use of phones on the shop floor when it’s prohibited, or an apparent refusal to comply with a certain usage technique on a new machine. With behavioral conversations you need to talk about the issue when it arises.

 

Performance - These conversations are planned conversations where you as the employer are being proactive to address the employee’s performance, positive as well as negative, for the sake of coaching them to greater levels of accomplishment and competence. Performance discussions should be introduced a few weeks ahead of time so the employee can come prepared for the talk, and should be done regularly - perhaps annually, but preferably more often.

 

Never center your proactive discussions with employees around money

 

The typical annual review contains a significant amount of discussion of salary, raises, etc. But when you’re making the move to these new style proactive discussions, you want to have conversations about money completely separate from the performance discussion. The point of the proactive discussion is to coach, consider options, and draw the employee into their own career advancement path in a deliberate way. You want them involved in thinking through the ways they can become an even greater asset to the company and how they can build their own skill set to put them in a place where other opportunities can open up to them. Find out why Karla Dobbeck, Human Resources Specialist, recommends you keep money-talk out of the annual review in this episode of Making Chips.

 

Be careful about giving “bonuses” to your employees

 

Karla Dobbeck recommends that you find other ways to reward employees besides the typical “bonuses” that are a part of the annual review conversation quite often. Why? Because there are negative legal and tax implications to giving bonuses that you may not be aware of. If you want to motivate better performance as part of your proactive conversations with employees, find other creative ways to do that. Bonuses could bite you in the end. Find out more about the negative consequences of giving bonuses and what Karla recommends as alternatives in this episode.

Outline of this episode

 

  • Welcome to this episode of Making Chips - THE Podcast to equip manufacturing professionals!

  • Jim’s proactive search for new equipment - what and why.

  • Proprietary materials Jason has discovered from Thyssen Krupp (sponsor).

  • Introduction of Karla Dobbeck, Human Resources Professional and Specialist.

  • The headaches and benefits of acronyms.

  • Why Karla doesn’t like the “grading system” of Employee Evaluations (she doesn’t like to use the words “evaluations” or “review.”

  • How to approach these proactive discussions - 3 to 4 weeks ahead and at the time of the discussion.

  • The types of questions to ask during one of these discussions.

  • How to partner with the employee to create a plan to improve an employee’s performance.

  • Why Jason’s approach is not an “annual review” type discussion - and how Karla responds to his approach.

  • How to start on a better road to employee relationships with you, their employer.

  • The two types of conversations employers should have with their employees: performance and behavior.

  • Why these conversations should NOT be centered around money (salary increases, etc.).

  • Jason gives a real-life type scenario for Karla and Jim’s responses - what to do?

  • How bonuses fit into these discussions and the legal implications of bonuses.

  • How to leave comments on this episode.

 

Links mentioned on this episode

 

http://www.OnlineMetals.com (sponsor for this episode)

 

Karla Dobek’s website - http://www.askhrt.com/

 

www.MakingChips.com/contact

 

Or call us at 312-725-0245

 

Tweets you can use to tell others about the episode

 

Nobody should come into the workplace and have their job done to them - Karla Dobbeck http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=578

 

#Employers are responsible to #coach and #equip their #employees in an ongoing manner http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=578

 

Why you should not talk about #money in your #EmployeeReviews http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=578

 

Why #AnnualReviews are not a good idea - on this episode of #MakingChips http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=578

 

The two types of conversations #employers should be having with #employees regularly http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=578

 

Jul 15, 2015

Outsourcing jobs to China and other countries used to be the most affordable option for many manufacturing companies. But changes to the global economy have caused changes that make it not only affordable, but even advantageous for U.S. Manufacturers to bring jobs home. Harry Moser is a veteran of the manufacturing industry and upon retirement he took the initiative to being an organization focused on doing exactly that. Find out more about The Reshoring Initiative and what it’s doing to promote the return of jobs to the U.S., on this episode of Making Chips.

 

It’s cheaper to send jobs overseas… or is it?

 

That used to be the wisdom of the day, but the rise in wages in China and other places has caused the advantages of offshoring jobs to diminish year after year until we’re at a place where it’s actually better to keep jobs onshore in the U.S. Harry Moser and the Reshoring Initiative have developed many great studies that show the effects of offshoring VS reshoring and are convinced that the benefits of bringing jobs home to the U.S. far outweigh the once-existing perks of sending jobs offshore. Find out how Harry’s organization is helping educate the manufacturing industry, and how you can use their free tools to determine why it might be time for your company to bring jobs home.

 

How can you know if it’s smarter to bring your manufacturing jobs back home?

 

There are so many variables in figuring out your costs for offshoring or keeping jobs in the U.S. it can be very confusing. But Harry Moser and The Reshoring Initiative are working hard to simplify the evaluation. One of the ways they’re doing that is by providing free online tools to estimate what they call “Total Cost of Ownership,” which can help you gauge the overall, true costs of bringing outsourced jobs back to the U.S. It takes into account all the variables you might encounter to provide a great overall picture of both options for comparison. Find out how to access the Total Cost of Ownership Estimator in this episode of Making Chips.

 

Why are many companies bringing jobs back home to the U.S.?

 

There are likely as many reasons as there are companies, but one of the main reasons is that companies are learning from their mistakes. Years of outsourcing manufacturing jobs has shown us the true costs of sending jobs overseas, and in many cases the advantages were not as beneficial as we once thought. Smart CEOs and owners are reassessing the choices of the past with an eye toward cutting costs through bringing jobs back to the U.S. Find out if you’ve made some of those same mistakes and how you can move toward cutting costs in your business, on this episode of Making Chips.

 

Webinars about reshoring manufacturing jobs

 

The Reshoring Initiative is doing many things to educate manufacturing leaders about the benefits of bringing jobs home, benefits that didn’t exist even 10 years ago. Harry Moser covers many of the programs and offerings the Reshoring Initiative offers in this episode of Making Chips. One of those resources we’d like to highlight are the many webinars they’ve held to make the case for reshoring. You can find those webinars on the Reshoring Initiative website ( http://www.reshorenow.org/webinars/ ) and find out more about the purpouse and goals of the Reshoring Initiative on this episode of Making Chips.

Outline of this episode

 

  • Welcome to the podcast - from Jason and Jim.

  • Updates from Jason about his trip to Korea - he visited a manufacturing company there (YG1).

  • Jim’s new marketing plan for Carr Machine and Tool and the revamp of the company web site.

  • Making Chips goes on the road - the grand opening of a new, innovative hardware store in San Diego, California - July 21st, 4 to 6 PM. See the invite below to meet Jim and Jason if you’re in the area.

  • Jim’s introduction of today’s guest: Harry Moser, President of “The Reshoring Initiative.”

  • What sparked Harry starting The Reshoring Initiative - practically and emotionally.

  • How does a manufacturer take advantage of the opportunity to “reshore” their manufacturing?

  • How manufacturers are able to use the Total Cost of Ownership Estimator.

  • Why it’s now possible for U.S. manufacturers to bring jobs back home (what’s happening in China - the main place jobs have been outsourced).

  • Are wages less of a factor in our day, in the U.S. and in China?

  • What is localization, and why does it matter for U.S. manufacturers?

  • How companies have learned from their mistakes when it comes to the decision to outsource manufacturing offshore or to keep it onshore.

  • How do manufacturers identify the most important factors relating to whether they should bring their manufacturing back onshore?

  • How wastes are made worse through offshoring manufacturing jobs.

  • Harry’s conversation with President Obama and what he encouraged the White House to do to bring jobs back to the U.S.

  • How to find out more about the Reshoring Initiative and how you can use their free resources to estimate your costs of reshoring outsourced jobs.

 

Links mentioned on this episode

 

http://www.MakingChips.com/18 - The episode that covers the new innovative hardware store.

 

http://www.OnlineMetals.com (sponsor for this episode)

 

The Reshoring Initiative - http://www.reshorenow.org/

 

Free Online Total Cost of Ownership Estimator - http://www.reshorenow.org/tco-estimator/

 

Contact Harry at info@reshore.org

 

www.MakingChips.com/contact

 

Or call us at 312-725-0245

 

Making Chips on the road - Tuesday, July 21st, 4 to 6 PM - 10211 Pacific Mesa Blvd, San Diego - come in and say “If you’re not making chips, you’re not making money.” and get a free T-shirt!

 

Tweets you can use to tell others about the episode

 

#Reshoring manufacturing jobs is now affordable. Find out how on this episode of #MakingChips http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=574

 

If you’re not #MakingChips, you’re not making money - the Making Chips Podcast http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=574

 

#Manufacturing companies can now spend less by bringing #offshore jobs home. More on this episode http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=574

 

The #ReshoringInitiative to bring jobs back to the U.S. On this episode of #MakingChips http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=574


Cut costs in your #manufacturing business by bringing jobs home to the U.S. More on this episode http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=574

Jul 8, 2015

Every employer has to deal with the complex issues that are a part of employment law in the modern age. But they also have to run a shop that is well-tuned and efficient. Too often those two responsibilities conflict in ways that they don’t expect. In this episode of Making Chips, Jason and Jim are going to chat with Karla Dobbeck, a Human Resources specialist who has some very practical, insightful advice for manufacturing employers on how to deal with those “bad apples” that show up from time to time in a way that will protect you and your company from a legal standpoint.

Making an example of a troublesome employee

 

The old adage is true, “One bad apple will spoil the whole bunch.” In a manufacturing company, morale, attitudes, and overall contentment in the workplace can be dramatically impacted by an employee who refuses to comply with company policy or production and safety standards. Karla Dobbeck recommends that you deal with those bad apples in a way that is clearly outlined in your employment policies, and to do so quickly and without apology. Making an example of one employee is powerfully effective in communicating your company values and seriousness about keeping them, to the rest of the work force. Listen to the audio to find out more about how to do this legally and wisely.

Sometimes the answer is not more rules

 

When issues come up on the shop floor or in the break room the tendency of management can be to make another rule to cover that sort of situation. The problem is that before long the company will have so many rules that nobody can keep track of all of them, much less enforce them fairly and consistently. In this episode of Making Chips Jim inserts his opinion about the need for “rules” and that oftentimes the answer is not to create a new rule but to have a private conversation with individual employees who need correction or guidance. This not only addresses the issue at hand, but does so in a simpler way that builds relationship and company culture at the same time. Learn more about how Jim does this by listening to this episode.

Document, document, document

 

In our lawsuit-happy culture, it’s a sad but true fact that employers have to be very careful and clear when taking action against an employee for any reason. That’s why it’s important for every disciplinary or corrective action to be documented clearly by the employer so there is a paper trail both of the history of the offenses in question and of the actions that were taken each step along the way. This way, if the time comes when an employee has to be terminated, the employer has a strong case for the cause and need for the termination that will make their case in court, should it be needed. You’ll also be able to document your compliance with OSHA requirements. Karla Dobbeck has a wealth of insight into this subject and you can hear more on this episode of Making Chips.

The most common employment mistakes employers make

 

Karla Dobbeck has seen it all as a Human Resources consultant and advisor - the good, the bad, and the ugly. In this episode of Making Chips she shares what she considers to be the most common and most serious mistakes that employers make regarding employment law and gives common sense, practical advice on how manufacturing employers can avoid the same pitfalls. It’s worth the price of listening, so grab a cup of coffee, a pen and paper, and get ready to take some great notes that will help you improve your processes and procedures surrounding the employment practices of your company.

 

Outline of this episode

  • Social media as it relates to brand exposure - Jim’s story.

  • Making Chips is going on the road - to San Diego! Hear the details on this episode.

  • Invitation to be interviewed on Making Chips - give us a call - 312-725-0245

  • Human Resources for the Manufacturing industry with Karla Dobbeck.

  • When to “make an example” of a troublesome employee - cell phone issues, safety issues, etc.

  • When to create “rules” and when to rely on private conversations with individuals.

  • Dealing with employees who are chronically late or missing work.

  • Addressing issues where employees seem to be abusing break time.

  • Special considerations for employees who are pregnant mothers.

  • How to properly document employee problems and firing decisions.

  • Employment and termination mistakes most often made by employers.

  • How to deal with unemployment claims when an employee has been terminated.

  • Can part-time employees file for unemployment? Yes, in these situations.

  • How to avoid the “games” that keep bad apples in your company.

 

Links mentioned on this episode

 

Human Resource Techniques - Karla’s company -

 

Karla on LinkedIn -

 

www.MakingChips.com/contact

 

Or call us at 312-725-0245

 

Making Chips on the road - Tuesday, July 21st, 4 to 6 PM - 10211 Pacific Mesa Blvd, San Diego - come in and say “If you’re not making chips, you’re not making money.” and get a free T-shirt!

Jul 6, 2015

Today’s episode of Making Chips features a listener question. You can leave your question for Jim and Jason to answer by going to www.MakingChips.com to leave your question. They just might answer it on an upcoming podcast episode. Today’s question has to do with costing out a job. Is there a standard formula or way to price out jobs in light of workers who are manning more than one machine, etc.? Jim has years of experience in costing out jobs so he’s got a lot to share in this episode.

But first, some thoughts about the Making Chips growth curve

The Podcast has been going gangbusters. Jim and Jason are both amazed that there have been 13,00o downloads of the show that have happened since they first began. They're eager to put that influence to even more work for you as the show continues. So the guys first of all want to "thank you" for supporting the show and their work to inform, educate, and expand the manufacturing industry.

The guys also want to let you in on a materials sourcing company they've been working with. It's www.OnlineMetals.com. 24 hours a day you can go on this amazing website, receive materials quotes, and even order the products you need to fulfill your manufacturing orders. And if you use the promo code CHIPS and receive a 15% discount!

 Job costing

Do you know how to cost out a machining job? Do you understand how to figure in the wear on the machine, the cost of your overhead and operator wages, the type of material you’ll be using for the job, weight of the part you’re producing, and other variables? If you don’t, you need to listen carefully to this episode of Making Chips. Jim explains how he goes about costing out a job, including how he uses an excel spreadsheet to figure out the cost.

When you’re costing out a job, Jim has a powerfully practical tip to help you do the costing properly: take into consideration the size of the part you’re going to be working with on the job. A very large part is going to cost you more in terms of manpower and time. Jim sets a part of similar size on his desk to put the job into perspective. He’ll take it out to the machine and hold it up beside it to see how manageable it’s going to be. Don’t overlook this important consideration as you’re costing out a job in your shop. Listen in to find out more about how Jim goes about costing out jobs.

Costing out a job can also be a bit tricky when it comes to the type of material being used. Manufacturers need to keep in mind that material costs may differ widely when creating parts from various materials. That’s a variable that has to be kept in mind so you don’t under-cost a job and cost yourself the profit margin you should have. Jim shares his tips on how to go about doing that in this episode of Making Chips.

All this and more on this episode of Making Chips!

Here’s the outline this episode

  • The success of the podcast and a new supplier you can use - www.OnlineMetals.com
  • A listener question about the topic of this episode: How do you cost out a job, are there recommended ways to go about it? What about when the same operator is working multiple machines? The listener also had a second question about a “lights out” machine and how to figure costs using that sort of setup.
  • Making Chips is going to hit the road the third week of July 21, 2015- going to San Diego, CA. If you live nearby, come check it out and meet Jason and Jim. Say, “If you’re not making chips, you’re not making money” to get a free T-shirt.
  • An invitation to anyone who is familiar with "lights out machining." Can you serve as a resource to the guys? If so, contact them at www.MakingChips.com/contact
  • Five things to consider on Job Costing: Quantity - Type of material - Tolerance - Size of the part you’re making - Complexity of the part
  • How often Jim evaluates his shop rates and the things he looks at to do the evaluation well.
  • How Jim trains others in his company to do job costing.
  • Is it possible to create computer software to do job costing?
  • An invitation to you: ask us your question on the making chips website.

Links mentioned on this episode

www.OnlineMetals.com - get your 15% discount by using the code "MAKINGCHIPS"

www.MakingChips.com/18

www.MakingChips.com/contact

Or call us at 312-725-0245

Jun 17, 2015

We introduced you to Patricia Miller of Matrix IV back in episode 26 and in today’s episode we’re going to do a deeper dive into the challenges and victories Patricia has faced as she’s taken over the reigns of her family’s ailing manufacturing company. The insights she shares as a former marketer from the biotech field, looking into the manufacturing industry for the first time, are very insightful and worth a listen.

 

As Patricia Miller took over the reigns of her grandfather’s failing company she realized that she had her work cut out for her. The company was stuck in the 70s and had to pivot quickly or else it would die. Patricia took immediate steps to do a handful of vital things - 4 in fact - that she highlights in this episode of Making Chips.

 

First on Patricia Miller’s list of advice for those in the manufacturing industry is the vital need to build community and connection within the industry. She did exactly that after taking over as leader of Matrix IV, going to conventions and local meetups, using the internet to get to know other influencers and leaders within the manufacturing industry, and working to not only be known, but to get to know others in the community for the sake of mutual support and help as the industry moves forward in a new era.

 

Patricia’s marketing background comes into play as she looks at the way the manufacturing industry has traditionally done its own marketing - and she’s convinced that more time needs to be spent by company owners getting to know their market, asking their customers how they are doing at meeting their needs, how their needs are changing, and what they can do to better serve and enable their clients to achieve their business goals. Companies need to become more concerned with creating a positive experience for their customers and those who might use their services in the future.

 

As Matrix IV began to re-grow under the leadership of its new CEO, Patricia Miller, many challenges and hurdles had to be overcome. Morale and company culture needed attention immediately, as did the discovery of new pools or niches of customers so that the business could continue on a solvent path. On top of all that, Patricia had to discover how to add much needed employees to get the company producing effectively while balancing a very meager budget at the same time. You’ll learn a lot from Patricia’s advice.



All this and more on this episode of Making Chips!

.

Here’s the outline of part two of the conversation with Patricia

 

  • Patricia Miller from Matrix IV - inheriting a family business after a successful marketing career in the corporate world.

  • Through the eyes of a newbie - Patricia’s observations and advice to those who are in the manufacturing industry.

  • The power of community and connections within the industry and how Patricia made connections within the manufacturing community after taking over the helm at Matrix IV.

  • Why Patricia thinks it’s very important for manufacturers to truly understand their market, their clients, and how to create a positive position for them.

  • The first steps Patricia took to understand her market and customers.

  • The valuable presence and a path forward for the manufacturing industry in the U.S.

  • Why change is a great ally for manufacturing companies.

  • The first thing that had to change in her company when Patricia moved into the manufacturing industry.

  • How the culture in Patricia’s company has changed as she’s implemented improvements.

  • The challenges of adding employees to an older company.

  • The roadblocks experienced as the company experienced its re-growing pains.

  • What Patricia believes will be the next steps in the growth of Matrix IV.

Links mentioned on this episode

 

Part 1 of the conversation with Patricia Miller - http://www.makingchips.com/mc026-40-year-old-manufacturing-startup-with-patricia-miller-of-matrix-iv-podcast/

 

Patricia’s company - Matrix IV - http://www.matrixiv.com/

 

Episode 18 with Ray Ziganta

http://www.makingchips.com/the-third-place-for-engineers-with-ray-ziganto-mc018-podcast/

 

Episode 22 - Create your corporate snapshot

http://www.makingchips.com/taking-your-corporate-snapshot-podcast-mc022/

 

www.MakingChips.com/contact

 

Or call us at 312-725-0245

Tweets you can use to tell others about the benefits of vending systems

 

Is my #manufacturing company a positive experience for my customers? http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=516

 

Learn to market your #manufacturing company without a #marketing degree http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=516

 

A #thankyounote is one of the most powerful messages you can send to your customers http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=516

 

Change produces hope, even in the #manufacturing industry http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=516

 

Changing the culture in your manufacturing shop is hard, but worth it http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=516

 

Why #change is a great ally for #manufacturing companies that want to grow http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=516

Jun 10, 2015

Marketing is an important part of any business. It’s got to be because it’s how you let people know who you are and what you do. That’s something that can never change. But the WAY you marketing has GOT to change. Why? Because the world we live in changes. People are repulsed or attracted by different things today than they were even a few years ago. Marketing has got to flex with the times.

 

In this episode of Making Chips, Jim Carr and Jason Zenger walk you through their personal mindset about marketing for the manufacturing industry, focusing on the top old-school marketing tactics that don’t work in the modern era. Some of them are seen as “staples” of good marketing but simply don’t yield results and wind up wasting money. Listen in to find out what they are.

 

A peek into this episode: Interruption marketing. Do you know what that is? Do you know why it’s probably the WORST way to get attention for your manufacturing business? And do you know if you’re doing it or not? If you didn’t know what it was in the first place, chances are you are still doing it. Listen in to this episode to learn how to modify your marketing tactics so you can be more effective in generating interest in your services and products.

 

Do you use the Yellow Pages to market your business? Jim and Jason beleive the good old YP are a thing of the past as well. The ways people search for information have gone increasingly online and less toward print. The advent of smartphone technology is making that more true every day. The money you spend for those expensive yellow pages ads could be money wasted. Jim and Jason will explain it in the episode.

 

In manufacturing news, there’s a growing need for skilled, quality people in the manufacturing industry. Opportunities are abundant and more are popping up every day. There’s plenty of room for advancement and good salaries. Listen to this episode of Making Chips to find out more details about this great opportunity.

 

All this and more on this episode of Making Chips!

.

Here’s the outline of the conversation

 

  • The possibility of sponsorship opportunities for the Making Chips podcast.

  • News items: Quality people needed in the manufacturing industry.

  • No more interruption marketing - do you know what that means?

  • What about the yellow pages and manufacturing directories? Should you really be in there?

  • Are you a spammer? You might be surprised.

  • General radio advertisements.

  • Line cards, facilities lists, and brochures - do you need them?

  • What is permission-based marketing? It’s the new way marketing works today.

  • Do you know what inbound marketing is? You need to.

  • Jim and Jason’s personal top No-No’s of traditional marketing.

 

Links mentioned on this episode

 

www.MakingChips.com/contact


Or call us at 312-725-0245

Jun 4, 2015

That’s what Patricia Miller’s professional associates told her when she started investigating the possibility of taking over her family business after she’d already pursued and been successful at a career that included marketing, corporate leadership, and politics. Put yourself in her shoes and you’ll probably understand why they said what they did. She’d already experienced many perks that manufacturing leaders seldom do. Travel, posh offices, important connections - yet, she says her heart and her home pulled her back to take over her grandfather’s failing manufacturing business.

 

Welcome to Making Chips - THE podcast for manufacturing leaders and those involved in the manufacturing industry. Jim Carr and Jason Zenger bring you these shows week after week to help you keep on top of what’s happening in the manufacturing industry and to equip you to be the leader of your company as you desire to be.

 

Today the guys are talking with Patricia Miller in what is likely part one of a two part conversation. Patricia’s story is anything but typical. Though she was surrounded by the world of manufacturing as a child, spending time around her grandparent’s very successful machine shop, she never felt a draw to be “in” the family business. Her parents encouraged her to pursue her dreams and she did exactly that. But when her grandfather retired and his health failed, Patricia was at a juncture in her own life where she was choosing her next step. Suddenly, the option of taking over her grandparent’s business was a very real possibility that she’d not considered before.

 

In this episode of Making Chips you’re going to hear Patricia’s story of moving out of the corporate world to take over a manufacturing business that she admits was “stuck in the 70s” and on its last leg. It’s a story that testifies to the value and importance of long-time manufacturing operations and the leadership abilities of one amazing lady.

 

Grab your coffee, turn up the volume, and join Jim, Jason, and their guest Patricia Miller, CEO of Matrix IV as they discuss the process of moving a old-school manufacturing business into the modern era. On this episode of Making Chips.

 

.

Here’s the outline of the conversation with Patricia

 

  • The story of Matrix IV, beginning with Patricia’s grandfather and grandmother

  • Patricia’s experience as a child being around the world of manufacturing

  • Patricia’s education led her into corporate leadership, politics, pharmaceuticals, and everything BUT manufacturing

  • Patricia’s opportunity to take over the leadership of Matrix IV and how she came to that decision

  • The realization that the company was stuck in the 1970s and what Patricia did about it

  • The first steps toward rejuvenating a tired, old business

  • How 400% growth since Patricia’s arrival is spurring the business forward

 

Links mentioned on this episode

 

Patricia’s company - Matrix IV - http://www.matrixiv.com/

 

An article from “Plastics News” describing what Patricia has done with Matrix IV - http://www.plasticsnews.com/article/20141212/NEWS/141219962/new-leader-gives-molder-a-spark

 

www.MakingChips.com - sign up for the Making Chips newsletter & podcast posts automatically (your information is never given to anyone else).

 

You can leave a comment or add to the discussion on this episode by visiting http://www.MakingChips.com/25

 

Or call us at 312-725-0245

Tweets you can use to tell others about the benefits of vending systems

 

Old-school manufacturing has to move into the modern age. It’s a new day http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=490

 

My family encouraged me not to come back and take over the family business http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=490

 

I had done the things I wanted to do and decided to consider taking over the family business http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=490

 

90% of the business had gone offshore before I took over the leadership http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=490

 

I decided to take over this family business that was 6 months from having no cash http://www.MakingChips.com/?p=490

May 27, 2015

It’s a manufacturing renaissance

 

Where do you typically find the best employees for your manufacturing company? How do you go about finding them? As you’ll hear from Jim and Jason’s stories in this podcast episode, everyone gets into the business through a different path. But the guys believe there’s a huge reservoir of future manufacturing leaders in High School students.

 

Why High School students? Because they represent an untapped, teachable, ready-to-train class of workers who are in need of what the manufacturing industry has to offer. The shortage of qualified, motivated manufacturing workers illustrates how shop owners have to look outside the normal places to find workers who can not only get busy making chips, but can also become the manufacturing leaders of tomorrow. High School students might just fit that bill for you.

 

A manufacturing renaissance is happening here and now. It’s once again possible for a person working in the manufacturing industry to earn an income that can comfortably support an entire family and establish that family in society for years to come. It’s not about the dusty, dirty shop floor of your grandfather’s day. It’s a new day, a new, technically challenging opportunity for those who are willing to seize it.

 

Another reason you should look to High Schools for your next manufacturing leader is because of how the manufacturing career path stacks up against college. The average college student will leave school without a specific skill set, will enter their chosen career field at the very bottom rung, and will do so with a load of financial debt that will take years to repay. By contrast, the manufacturing industry has high paying jobs available now that the average High School graduate can take advantage of. They’ll move up faster and avoid accumulating the debt often associated with higher education or specialized training (the training is paid for by their employer in many cases).

 

Rethink your hiring process. Reconsider the places to get your employees and the future leaders in your company. Your business needs quality employees who are motivated to move up the ladder of success and your local High School may be the very best place to find exactly that. The manufacturing renaissance is here. Will you be a part of it?



Here’s a teaser: the 6 qualities every future manufacturing leader must have

 

  1. The ability to pass a drug test.

  2. Dependability.

  3. A basic understanding of High School math.

  4. Communication skills - this one is HUGE!

  5. Familiarity with manufacturing (Mechanical aptitude).

  6. The desire to receive further training and certification.

.

Here’s the outline of the conversation about

 

  • Jim and Jason’s personal paths into the manufacturing business and how they became manufacturing leaders.

  • Questions about a new or additional podcast. What do you think? Contact us to let us know. 312-725-0245

  • Jim and Jason travel to San Diego soon - connect with them to find out how you can connect while you’re there. 312-725-0245

  • The historical background of American prosperity and domestic stability as it relates to the manufacturing industry.

  • The very real shortage of qualified, motivated manufacturing leaders in the modern day.

  • Why Jim and Jason feel High School students are the ideal pool from which to draw your future manufacturing leaders.

  • Why the manufacturing industry demands a higher quality of worker.

  • 6 qualities every future manufacturing leader should have.

  • How the college path compares with the path into manufacturing.

  • How a High School grad could outpace college students through manufacturing, making better money and starting with little to no debt.

  • Jim’s pros and cons of hiring a High School student or graduate to become a manufacturing role of leadership.




Links mentioned on this episode

 

www.MakingChips.com - sign up for the Making Chips newsletter & podcast posts automatically (your information is never given to anyone else).

 

You can leave a comment or add to the discussion on this episode by visiting http://www.MakingChips.com/25

 

Or call us at 312-725-0245

May 20, 2015

If you are a manufacturing leader and you are not on LinkedIn, you don’t exist. - Jim Carr

 

That’s how strongly Jim feels about the power of having a presence on LinkedIn. It’s not just for job-seekers, it’s for anyone who wants to engage in dialogue and exchange of information in a business niche. Manufacturing is one of those and you might be surprised at the amount of information flowing back and forth behind the scenes through the LinkedIn network.

 

In this episode, Jim and Jason are going to walk you through 6 reasons you need to be on LinkedIn if you are (or want to be) a leader in the manufacturing industry. Some of these may seem like common sense, but others will surprise you.

 

Don’t neglect the conversations that are already happening on LinkedIn. You never know when you’re going to have the opportunity to get involved in a conversation, provide an answer to a question from your area of expertise, and as a result become known as a leader in your niche of the industry. That puts you on the radar of more people which eventually translates into sales, consulting and speaking opportunities, and who knows what else.

 

To top off the episode the guys are going to fill you in on 7 quick ways you can get started with LinkedIn (or get restarted) that will make it easy and smooth.

 

You owe it to yourself and to your company to create a strong LinkedIn profile and get involved in the conversations going on within the manufacturing industry on LinkedIn. It’s free, it takes only a small amount of time, and can be leveraged to great value in your manufacturing business. Listen in on this episode of MakingChips to find out how you can ramp up your LinkedIn activity and benefit your business.

.

Here’s the outline of the conversation about

 

  • Manufacturing news updates

  • Why LinkedIn is a powerful tool for manufacturing leaders

  • Relevancy matters - putting yourself on the radar of others in the industry

  • Connect with business partners

  • Building a digital “rolodex”

  • Create a platform for “thought leadership” in the manufacturing industry

  • Share what you do and create engagement with others in the industry

  • Drive traffic, inquiries, and sales

  • How to get started or restarted on LinkedIn (7 helpful tips)

 

Links mentioned on this episode

 

www.MakingChips.com - sign up for the Making Chips newsletter & podcast posts automatically (your information is never given to anyone else).

 

You can leave a comment or add to the discussion on this episode by visiting http://www.MakingChips.com/23

 

Or call us at 312- 725-0245

May 13, 2015

If you don’t know how to calculate SFPM, you’re losing money!

 

Every now and then we like to go to square one to discuss some fundamental issues surrounding the work done in the average machine shop. This episode is one of those episodes. Jim and Jason are talking SFPM - Surface Feet Per Minute in this episode. If you don’t understand what SFPM is, or if you don’t know how to calculate it, you need to listen in to this episode.

 

Properly calculating SFPM is a fundamental machine shop skill that enables you to do a handful of very important things:

 

  1. You’re able to optimize the work-flow of your shop.

  2. You do that by maximizing the rate at which you are making chips.

  3. This results in more money being made per minute.

  4. It also saves tools, materials, and time.

 

Every machinist, from novice to experienced must understand how to calculate Surface Feet Per Minute in order to do the very best job with every piece of material and with every tool. Without this knowledge they will wear out tools, destroy materials, and ultimately cost the company money, simply because of ignorance of this fundamental skill.

 

In this episode of Making Chips Jim and Jason also give some examples of how they go about managing the issue of SFPM in their shops, including the kind of conversations they have with employees about SFPM, how they can tell if SFPM has not been calculated accurately, and how to do the actual math to determine a proper SFPM number for the material and tools being used.

 

Yep, it’s basics. But the basics are important. So get ready to review (or learn for the first time) on this episode of Making Chips.

Here’s the outline of the conversation about corporate snapshots

  • Making Chips is going on the road the summer of 2015.

  • Why surface feet per minute is important for every machinist to understand.

  • How to find the SFPM for the materials and tools you are using.

  • The problems that can happen if you don’t understand SFPM.

  • How a misunderstanding of Surface Feet Per Minute can cost your company.

  • Calculating RPM for the material you are using.

  • How do you know if you’ve calculated SFPM accurately?

  • How Jim manages his employees regarding Surface Feet Per Minute.

  • The risks of SFPM mismatches.

  • Using the RPM to to calculate the feed rate based on the tool being used.

  • How IPR (inches per revolution) relates to SFPM.

  • The optimization of your workflow through proper use of SFPM in your shop.

  • Training entry level machinists to properly calculate Surface Feet Per Minute.

Links mentioned on this episode

 

www.MakingChips.com - sign up for the Making Chips newsletter & podcast posts automatically (your information is never given to anyone else).

 

You can leave a comment or add to the discussion on this episode by visiting http://www.MakingChips.com/23

 

Or call us at 312- 725-0245

Tweets you can use to tell others about the benefits of vending systems

 

If you’re not making chips, you’re not making money

 

If your machinists don’t know how to calculate surface feet per minute, you’re losing money

 

Why is surface feet per minute (SFPM) such an important calculation for your job shop?

 

How to find SFPM (surface feet per minute) in your machine shop.

 

How do you know if you’ve calculated SFPM (surface feet per minute) accurately?

May 6, 2015

 

A corporate snapshot that has nothing to do with a camera!

 

Shop owners know what they do because they do it every day. But how do you communicate your areas of specialty and expertise in a concise, powerful way so that your prospective clients are able to get it right off? That’s what a corporate snapshot is for.

 

In this episode of Making Chips, Jim and Jason invite 3 guests into the study who specialize in helping businesses create their very own corporate snapshot. Their guests are Jule Poulos (a previous guest from episode 19 of Making Chips), Ray Ziganto (another previous guest - episode 18 of Making Chips), and Jon Baklund (yet another previous guest - Making Chips episode 21).

 

Here’s a brief summary of 4 important questions that a corporate snapshot should answer:

 

  1. What we do as a company

  2. Who we are as a company

  3. Who we serve as a company

  4. Why we do what we do better

 

When you’re able to clearly and accurately define and express those 4 key issues about your company you unlock the power to do a couple of very powerful things…

  • You’re equipping your employees to become “sales people” through a clear vision of what you do as a company.

  • You’re able to more quickly identify your target clients and engage them in relevant conversations about their needs.

  • You’re better able to serve your clients through knowing exactly what your services can do to meet their needs.

 

This episode of Making Chips is full of practical, powerful advice about why you need your own corporate snapshot and how you can develop one. Listen in to the conversation to get started on your own corporate snapshot!

Here’s the outline of the conversation about corporate snapshots

 

  • Introduction of the guests on this episode: Julie, Ray, and Jim.

  • Metalworking tools.

  • The number one tool in your toolbox - a corporate snapshot.

  • The objective of a corporate snapshot.

  • How a corporate snapshot is the “home” for your elevator pitch.

  • 4 crucial components of a corporate snapshot - What we do - Who we are - Who we serve - Why we do it better.

  • Defining each of those 4 points in order to determine your marketing approach and target your message.

  • How a corporate snapshot empowers your employees to serve the customer.

Links mentioned on this episode

 

www.MakingChips.com - sign up for the Making Chips newsletter

 

http://www.bi-link.com

Tweets you can use to tell others about the benefits of vending systems

 

The number one tool in your toolbox is a corporate snapshot. Find out more on this episode.

 

A corporate snapshot empowers your employees to serve the customer.

 

Do you know the 4 crucial components of a corporate snapshot?

 

What is a corporate snapshot and why do you need one? On this episode of Making Chips


Briefly and powerfully tell the who, what, why of your company with a corporate snapshot

May 1, 2015

Today Jason and Jim are coming to you from Chicago, the “Windy City!” They are there because they’re chatting with Jon Baklund, a veteran tool and die maker who started in the manufacturing industry when he was 19. His father still works in the shop daily, and his wife works in the business as well - so it’s a true “family” business. His business, Baklund R & D is heavily involved in #d printing, which is a very intriguing new aspect of the manufacturing industry.

 

3D printing is a newer technology that is truly going to be a game-changer in the manufacturing industry. It’s one of those things that old-school folks may feel an urge to resist but our advice is to jump on board the train because it’s going to be moving out! Jon Baklund has one 3D printer in his shop, an environmentally controlled device that allows him to make virtually any shape part with any interior shape imaginable. He says you have to “think from the inside-out” when it comes to 3D printing, and we agree.

 

3D printing machines on the scale Jon uses are pretty pricey - his machine cost his company right around $160,000.00. But he says it’s well worth it. The specialty niche it has enabled him to carve out for himself has been a huge benefit to the company and when others begin to get on board the “3D printing train” he will be one of the veterans in the space.

 

We wrap up this episode with two “off topic” pieces that should give you some great value.

  1. Jon’s approach to the internet and social media activity from a business perspective (he’s great at it, so take some notes)

  2. How Jon and his wife are able to work together day in and day out without problems.

 

Listen in… you’ll enjoy this episode of Making Chips!

Here’s the outline of the episode

 

  • Introduction of Jon Baklund.

  • Manufacturing news - The U.S.A. is the “hotspot” for Aerospace manufacturing.

  • A 3D printing overview - from the perspective of an end-user (Jon)

  • How Jon is adding additional services to his company’s 3D printing

  • The cost of materials used in a 3D printing machine - it’s comparatively inexpensive!

  • Typical tolerance levels in 3D printing and how Jon is getting better tolerances through some custom modifications.

  • Thinking from the inside-out in 3D printing.

  • How Jon determines billing for 3D printing jobs.

  • What kind of oversight does a 3D printer require?

  • The importance of an environmentally controlled 3D printer.

  • What is the cost of a good 3D printing machine?

  • Jon’s approach to the internet and social media for business.

  • How Jon and his wife are able to work together day after day in the business.

  • Jim’s summary of his take-aways from this episode.

Links mentioned on this episode

 

www.MakingChips.com - sign up for the Making Chips newsletter

 

Jon’s website - www.jonbaklund.com

 

The work-holding device Jon has developed - www.jonbaklund.com/baklund-workholding-llc/

 

Tweets you can use to tell others about the benefits of vending systems

 

The U.S.A. is the “hotspot” for Aerospace manufacturing. Find out more in today’s news segment

 

You have to “think from the inside-out” when it comes to 3D printing

 

Did you know you can add additional services to 3D printing to maximize profit?

 

How 3D printing is revolutionizing the manufacturing industry: this episode of Making Chips

 

3D printing is the train of the future for manufacturing. Will you get on board?

 

SOCIAL MEDIA BLURBS

 

3D printing machines on the scale Jon uses are pretty pricey - his machine cost his company right around $160,000.00. But he says it’s well worth it. The specialty niche it has enabled him to carve out for himself has been a huge benefit to the company and when others begin to get on board the “3D printing train” he will be one of the veterans in the space. Listen to this episode of Making Chips to hear Jon’s story.

 

3D printing is a newer technology that is truly going to be a game-changer in the manufacturing industry. It’s one of those things that old-school folks may feel an urge to resist but our advice is to jump on board the train because it’s going to be moving out! Jon Baklund has one 3D printer in his shop, an environmentally controlled device that allows him to make virtually any shape part with any interior shape imaginable. He says you have to “think from the inside-out” when it comes to 3D printing, and we agree. Hear Jon’s story on this episode of Making Chips.

Apr 27, 2015

This is a hot topic edition where Jim is asking Jason about vending systems for the machine shop. You may have the impression that vending machines are just for the huge companies that crank out bazillions of widgets every day. But is that true? You’re going to find out that and a ton more about machine shop vending systems in this episode of Making Chips.

 

There are many misconceptions about vending systems and much resistance to the idea that a small shop could actually benefit from using them, but Jason Zenger knows better. He’s been able to place systems in a variety of settings, from small to large shops and has seen the benefit in even the smallest settings.

 

The reason for that is simple: The cost for vending systems has dropped as the technology has increased, making the power of vending systems more affordable for the little guy. Vending systems also enable you to keep track of tool and supply usage, which in turn tells you which employees are using what items so that you can make more informed adjustments to your systems or procedures as needed. Just imagine the savings of ensuring that every part is being used to its fullest capacity!

The major objectives of implementing a vending system in your shop:

 

Reduction in Spending

Increased Productivity

Increased Profitability

 

If it doesn’t make sense to you how those benefits come from installing and using a vending system in your shop, you need to listen in as Jason shares his experience as a representative for some vending system companies.

What the guys have to say about vending systems in this episode...

 

  • Major objectives of having a vending system in your shop - 3 powerful reasons.

  • The history of modern vending systems for the machine shop.

  • Aren’t vending systems geared more for huge manufacturers?

  • How to use vending systems in a small machine shop.

  • The sizes of vending machines and how to fit them into your shop.

  • Partnering with someone to help you manage the vending system so it doesn’t take over your schedule.

  • What types of supplies and tools can work with a vending system?

  • The process of bringing on a vending system and the importance of your vending partner.

  • Best practice software issues relating to your machine shop vending system.

  • The increasing popularity of vending systems.

  • 3 ways small companies can benefit from vending systems.

Listener questions

 

Jim and Jason are also happy to highlight questions from listeners on this episode. You can ask your question for this section of the podcast by call 1-312-725-0245 and leave your message on the recording.

 

Here’s today’s questions:

 

How important is it for a manufacturing company to have a clean, updated, and functional website?

 

What are buyers looking for when searching for a new supplier?

Links mentioned on this episode

 

www.MakingChips.com - sign up for the Making Chips newsletter

Something to look forward to…

 

Making Chips is going on the road! Stay tuned for more details.

Tweets you can use to tell others about the benefits of vending systems

 

Machine shop vending systems for the little guys… it’s not only possible, it’s a reality.

 

You don’t have to be a huge shop to afford and benefit from vending systems. Find out more in this episode.

 

Track your supplies and tools more effectively, and keep more profit on the bottom line.

 

Vending systems can reduce spending, increase productivity, and increase profit, even in small machine shops.

 

Your machine shop can function more smoothly and profitably by using a vending system. Find out how in this episode.

Apr 20, 2015

In this episode, we interview Julie Poulos about the brand image of your manufacturing company and why strategy is most important.  Being “the best kept secret” should NOT be your goal.  Julie tells us why starting with a new website or a new logo is NOT the right first step. Marketing Steps: 1. Competitive Analysis 2. Interviews 3. Online Analytics 4. Influencer Identification (Defining Your Buyer Types) 5. Develop the Plan Jim and I want you to be equipped when you are having a discussion with a firm to help you with marketing or your e-Strategy. In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss multiple articles that cite a slow down in business for the beginning of 2015. About MakingChips MakingChips is a weekly podcast that will equip leaders in the metalworking manufacturing industry with valuable content to utilize in their career and business. What makes MakingChips unique is the fact that we are in the trenches getting dirty, leading, managing, designing, solving problems and pushing productivity.  MakingChips is here for us to report back from the factory floor to tell you what worked and what didn’t work…we tell you the mistakes we made and what we are excited to try.  We want to understand your problems and leverage this community to find a solution. Our goal is to equip manufacturing leaders and for those leaders to influence others in the manufacturing industry. From Jim: I'm the owner of CARR Machine & Tool, Inc., a 2nd generation high precision CNC machine shop utilizing 3 and 4 axis CNC Machining Centers. I’ve been at this a long time and

!
know machining like the back of my hand. Our company specialty is short to medium run jobs where we consistently hold tolerances of ± .0005 utilizing state-of-the-art tooling - which I get from Jason! From Jason: I'm the president of ZENGERS, a 3rd generation industrial supply company. I direct our team of metalworking specialists to decrease costs and increase productivity of our metalworking customers by applying the best tooling for the job and utilizing tool crib management technology. Subscribe and Follow Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MakingChipsPodcast Twitter: http://twitter.com/Making_Chips Instagram: http://instagram.com/MakingChips Website: http://MakingChips.com

Apr 13, 2015

In this episode, we interview Ray Zaganto, who created a new concept called “The Hardware Store” for reaching his customers by being innovative, thinking outside the box and finding the Alpha Engineer. Your "first place" is your home.  Your ”second place" is the workplace.  The “third place” is another location that connects you into a community and facilitates creative interaction. A lot of companies do not have the resources to outfit a standalone location and create a third place, but as Ray said: “Make Your Shop a Destination.” In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss an episode of the TV show, “The Good Wife” in relation to an episode about 3D printing. About MakingChips MakingChips is a weekly podcast that will equip leaders in the metalworking manufacturing industry with valuable content to utilize in their career and business. What makes MakingChips unique is the fact that we are in the trenches getting dirty, leading, managing, designing, solving problems and pushing productivity.  MakingChips is here for us to report back from the factory floor to tell you what worked and what didn’t work…we tell you the mistakes we made and what we are excited to try.  We want to understand your problems and leverage this community to find a solution. Our goal is to equip manufacturing leaders and for those leaders to influence others in the manufacturing industry. From Jim: I'm the owner of CARR Machine & Tool, Inc., a 2nd generation high precision CNC machine shop utilizing 3 and 4 axis CNC Machining Centers. I’ve been at this a long time and know machining like the back of my hand. Our company specialty is short to medium run jobs where we consistently hold tolerances of ± .0005 utilizing state-of-the-art tooling - which I get from Jason! From Jason: I'm the president of ZENGERS, a 3rd generation industrial supply company. I direct our team of metalworking specialists to decrease costs and increase productivity of our metalworking customers by applying the best tooling for the job and utilizing tool crib management technology.

Apr 6, 2015

In this episode, we interview Michael Magliano, an industrial real estate broker from Cushman & Wakefield, about strategies for buying, selling and leasing industrial real estate. In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss an article that asks the question: “What Do Manufacturing Workers Want From Their Employer.”

Mar 30, 2015

In this episode, we interview Ray Ziganto, President of Bi-Link, a global manufacturing company about his take-aways from the Crain’s Manufacturing Summit. • How does a manufacturing company stay on the leading edge? • How do you re-think manufacturing education? • Start with small steps. Cary Wood, President, Chief Executive Officer, Board Member of Sparton, talks about how to train and relate to the new workforce generation and why his turnover is so low. Dr. David Boulay, President of the Illinois Manufacturing Excellence Center (IMEC), discusses how public-private partnerships like IMEC support small and midsize manufacturing companies.  For more information on organizations like this, search for US Department of Commerce Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP). Dave Szczupak, Executive Vice President of Whirlpool, discusses the importance of local manufacturing companies to their supply chain and workforce development for the new generation.  Dave also tells us about the FIRST Robotics Competition for the youngest future generation of manufacturing. Jim Schultz, Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, discusses the importance of manufacturing to state commerce and how he is collaborating with his peers in other states. MakingChips.com/BiLink

Mar 23, 2015

What are the 3 most important actions that manufacturers can take now to improve their utilization of CAM software?  In this episode, we interview Matt Sump with ShopWare, one the top resellers of MasterCAM Software.  Jim answers the question: If you put 10 machinist in a shop and gave them a piece of material and a print, how many different ways will they produce that part? We discuss: • Latest trends in CAM software • How tool paths are calculated • Radial chip thinning • Most efficient amount of material removal • Surface feet per minute • Spindle speed • Utilizing a tooling database in CAM software • Machine utilization • Dynamic Machining versus High Speed Machining • Improving machining hydraulic manifolds using CAM software • Utilizing Dynamic Tool Paths • Automating existing processes with macros • Going beyond the basics by automating ! We briefly talk about the history of how MakingChips was started.
!! In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss an article declaring that US manufacturing is going extinct.  I’m going to state it here: if you remove manufacturing from the US Economy, the United States will lose 30% of its GDP. ShopWare http://www.shopwareinc.com Matt Sump www.linkedin.com/in/mattsump/en

Mar 16, 2015

In this episode, Jim and I discuss how you can receive grant money to expand your manufacturing business.  We specifically discuss the Federal TAAF Grant that Jim was awarded, the process that he went through, the reimbursed expenses and how he coupled two programs together. Trade Adjustment Assistance for Firms  MakingChips.com/TAAF In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss an article in the LA Times that states manufacturing is slower to grow in California than any other state in the USA.  The main factor for slow growth in California is the cost of doing business in the state. We have 2 questions for you: 1. Have you been successful receiving grant money?  If so, please share your story in the comments for this episode. 2. Would you like us to share more information associated with grant money, so you can take advantage of this under-utilized resource?

Mar 9, 2015

Roberts Swiss, a 60 year old manufacturer of Precision Swiss Machined Parts. Fernando gives

actionable advise to others who are not born into privilege and do not have a lot of resources,

but desire to seek advancement starting from the ground floor.

Fernando attributes his career success to:

• Taking advantage of learning from every possible resource - including the people who stood

in his way

• Tackling large projects

• Questioning the WHY behind business processes

• Working hard and doing the right thing

• Being the conduit of change

• Realizing challenges as opportunities for growth

• Bringing a culture of excellence

• Grace

In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss an article that stated US Stocks started the

year mixed because manufacturing growth stalled in December, which proves that manufacturing

makes a huge difference to the US economy.

#ManufacturingMatters

Mar 2, 2015

When should the owners of a business start succession planning? NOW!

In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss an article stating that slow manufacturing

growth doesn’t matter to the economy.

Feb 23, 2015

Should you implement Robotics into your company? In this episode we interview Brian Panek

from Panek Precision about robotics. We discuss the basics of robotics, how it has changed his

manufacturing and the culture of his company.

PanekPrecision.com

LinkedIn.com/in/brianpanek

Universal Robots

In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss that MakingChips has been featured on iTunes

New & Noteworthy, which is a huge accomplishment. We would like to thank our listeners for

their feedback and support.

Feb 16, 2015

Who is in your network? In this episode we discuss the power of networking and how to properly

cultivate relationships in your industry.

Join MakingChips at the 3rd Annual Crain’s Midwest Manufacturers Summit.

Crain’s Manufacturing Summit

1. Networking is a long term process

2. Should you stalk them on LinkedIn?

3. When you think that it is time for the hard sell…wait.

4. Ask for an introduction.

5. Stay within a particular circle.

6. Don't forget follow up, but don’t hard sell.

7. Offer free advise.

8. Look for commonality.

9. Collect business cards.

10. Connect on LinkedIn.

11. Give before you expect to receive.

In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss Forbes 30 under 30 in Manufacturing.

In our Metalworking Tools segment, we discuss Lenox Circtech Precision Circular Saw Blades.

More manufacturing companies are replacing band saw applications with with machines that

use cermet tipped circular saw blades.

Feb 9, 2015

What is the right method for getting paid for your work? This is a subject that both Jim and I

were reluctant to talk about; however, our goal is to bring the Metalworking Nation together

as a community to talk about topics that people are afraid to bring up.

What are your typical terms?

Do you offer payment via credit card?

Should you require a credit card for initial orders?

Do you have a defined credit terms policy?

If you are agreeing to an OEM contract that stipulates 90-120 day terms, are you considering

the financing rate and including that in the price that you charge for the product or service?

“Somebody has to pay it!”

What is our approach to collecting?

When do “put on the heat”?

Do you use collection agencies?

In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss Workshops for Warriors, a non-profit that

transitions veterans into civilian jobs with a focus on manufacturing training.

In our Metalworking Tools segment, we discuss Z-Cut, a line of USA Made standard and highperformance

end mills, drills and taps.

Feb 2, 2015

Years ago, most businesses did not have a vision or a mission for their companies. It was simply

a matter of “blocking and tackling” your team through wins as the company grew (you buy

more machines as the customers come). Now, most businesses are caught up in the Wall

Street mindset that if you are not growing, you are dying.

Should every manufacturing company have this mindset or can we do better?

Do you have at least a loose vision or mission for your company?

Where do you see the company in 5 years or in 10 years?

How do you define staying where you are? - # of machines, sales, profit, employees, customers?

for JZ, a couple metrics: sales, profit, # of vending integration systems that we are serving,

customer retention

Do prospective customers look at your business in terms of size and gage whether they want

to do business with you?

The wrong ways to grow

1. Using supplier credit to grow and not having a financing plan for growth

• Instead: Have a financing plan for growth, talk to your bank, and learn about the proper

way to borrow money in order to achieve your goals.

2. Taking on low margin business to build your business or to just get in the door

• What happens?

• Can’t make money on the job

• Late on the job

!

• Quality is subpar

• Can’t do the job efficiently

End-users have become smarter about this and many are now working with their existing suppliers

to find out where they can partner and be strategic to remove costs out of the manufacturing

processes (another good subject for the future).

In our Manufacturing News segment, we discuss women in manufacturing (again). There is a

push in the Milwaukee market for welders. A 24 year old single mother with no intention to

get into manufacturing is pitched to pursue a manufacturing career. ”This is so cool, I am actually

creating my own art.” She is enjoying what she is creating, making good money and

able to support her family.

In our Metalworking Tools segment, we discuss the Widia Victory versus Value lines and why a

company would utilize this model.

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