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Making Chips Podcast for Manufacturing Leaders

MakingChips is hosted by a set of multi-generational manufacturing leaders who are on the factory floor everyday, living their lives in the world of manufacturing—they know first hand that manufacturing can be challenging. Founders Jim Carr and Jason Zenger released their first podcast in late December 2014—releasing over 300 episodes to-date, reaching more than 650,000 downloads—all while striving to deliver on their mission, to “equip and inspire the metalworking nation.” In 2019, Nick Goellner, another multi-generational manufacturing leader, joined the MakingChips hosts, bringing a third generation of manufacturing leaders to the table. Join the hosts as they work through industry challenges with leaders such as Titan Gilroy (Titans of CNC), John Saunders (NYC CNC), Mark Terryberry (Haas Automation) and more.
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Making Chips Podcast for Manufacturing Leaders
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Sep 7, 2018

On this episode of MakingChips, Rob Sattler talks about how his family business took manufacturing from the farm to the shop floor. Rob is the Vice President of Sales, Estimating and Engineering at Sattler Inc in Ira, Michigan. He comes from a family of manufacturing with both his father and grandfather being involved in metalworking. Rob tells his story, his manufacturing background and how is carrying on the family legacy today.

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How to turn a barn into a machine shop

Rob Sattler’s father started his machine shop in the barn of his dairy farm. Having been in the manufacturing industry prior to starting the dairy farm, his dad began to purchase and repair old machines. Thanks to his dad’s entrepreneurial spirit and ingenuity, Rob’s father decided to start using those machines. In 1994, Sattler Inc was born. What started as a family business has become a highly successful manufacturing company that has grown from the farm to the shop floor known as Sattler Inc. Listen as Rob shares the story of how Sattler Inc. began and how they are flourishing still today on this episode of MakingChips.

The 3 most impactful lessons learned in manufacturing

Through challenges and growth, there are three guiding principles that Rob Sattler has learned. The first has to do with the inevitability of change. Whether you like it or not change happens to everyone in every industry. With the rapid advancements in technology, leaders can now expect even more change at a much faster rate. What do you do if you are change-averse? Rob Sattler’s advice is to get over it. He suggests that manufacturing leaders should learn to love change. If you don’t adapt to the demands of the market, your competition will and they will either put you behind or out of business altogether. Continuous growth, training, and adaptation are essential to being successful.

Get the Best Tools

New tools and machinery can be expensive. Not only do you have to consider the cost of the machine, but also the time and training it takes to implement the new machine. However, Rob Sattler suggests that you can’t afford to not have the best tools. Though the upfront cost might be more, having the right tools in place in your shop will eventually pay for itself in both production and customer acquisition. Listen as Rob talks about the importance of having the best tools during this interview.

The case for program management in manufacturing

In order to take a company from the farm to the shop floor, there has to be great management in place. Program management is like conducting an orchestra. You can have the greatest talent and the finest tools but if you aren’t giving direction then your business will suffer. Coordinating training of your employees with the utilization of the best tools and engineering is essential in serving your customers well and having a successful manufacturing company. Hear all about that and more on MakingChips.

Here’s The Good Stuff!

  • Manufacturing News - The ISM manufacturing index exceeded all estimates showing positive signs for the economy
  • Introduction of Rob Sattler, VP Sales, Estimating, Engineering at Sattler Inc
  • Rob Sattler tells how his father started a family machine shop from his dairy farm barn
  • How Sattler weathered the economic ups and downs through the years
  • Sattler Inc has grown through the years, now specializing in powertrain system assemblies
  • Rob Sattler shares the three most impactful lessons he’s learned while being in the manufacturing industry.

Tools & Takeaways

This Week’s Superstar Guest

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