August 22, 2012
In How Can We Make Manufacturing Sexy? author Karin Lindner poses some interesting questions about the current state of the North American manufacturing industry. And, while not a self-help text in the traditional Chicken Soup for the Soul kind of way, the book poses questions, often tough-minded ones, that should help all manufacturing professionals better understand themselves, their companies, and the industry that is of vital importance to families across the country.
She writes, "As a matter of fact, now more than ever, it is time to rethink, redefine, and thereby rediscover the sexiness of our manufacturing industry."
The book is about bringing positive energy to the workplace; it's about the role of women in a predominantly male sector; and it's about the dangers of not attracting young workers to manufacturing.
On attracting Generation Y: "Today's youth is interested in high-profile, attractive jobs and we haven't done a great job selling manufacturing in that context."
The lowdown: Today's technology should attract young people, but that can happen only if they are made aware of it. Lindner suggests field trips to manufacturing plants and presentations by industry leaders at schools to jump-start this interest.
On why women should play a key role in manufacturing: "The best companies I've worked with value diversity. Great results always come when a team of men and women of different ages, races, cultures, and education work together."
The lowdown: According to a 2011 study from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, only 11 percent of practicing engineers are women.
The book is a quick read, but it brings to the forefront many of the topics heard throughout shops from coast to coast. The most interesting section comes in the chapter titled "What Should Manufacturers Start Doing?"
In this chapter Lindner writes, "People are so driven by a 'go, go, go' or 'getting the product out the door' mentality that they don't have the time to think before they act."
Every manufacturer should take the time to ask:
Lindner asks the questions, and it's up to you to supply the answers.
Lindner is a former Magna employee who is now a trainer, life coach, and inspirational speaker whose goal is to create awareness among the general public and education system about the opportunities that exist in the manufacturing industry.
Products in Management
News in Management