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.
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.
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.
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.
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,
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.