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How to change the image of the Manufacturing Industry

June 27, 2014

Sarah Bourdeau, CIC, AIC Account Executive – Founders Insurance Group, Inc.

 

There’s a quote/photo circulating on Linked In that says, “If you smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room.”   At the CBIA’s Manufacturing Summit (think State of the Union), I was definitely in the right room.  It was a pleasure to spend the morning with many innovative manufacturing executives and the affiliated professionals who support them.

The challenges facing the manufacturing industry today are many.  The cost of business is ever increasing, the work force is aging, new employees are expensive to train and hard to find.  Add the cost of development, technology requirements, not knowing what components OEMs will need and it could feel downright overwhelming.

Listening to the presentations at the Summit, I did my share of head nodding.  I relate to the uphill battle facing our manufacturing clients because it’s very similar to the topics we discuss in the insurance industry: How do we change the image of our industry:

  • How do we accurately portray our industries to draw students, their parents and individuals interested in changing industries?
  • How do we attract the much needed young workers?  How do we provide them with the appropriate education and training?
  • How do we pass on the wealth of knowledge from our experienced technicians have before they retire?
  • What are the cultural implications of a changing workforce?  How do we address employment issues as we diversify and change?
  • How can our organizations invest in technology to increase efficiency, stay competitive and grow our businesses?

That’s quite a list.

We have such a strong culture of manufacturing in Connecticut.  The individuals who are tasked with “fixing” these challenges are experienced, they are bright and they are committed.  Ultimately, the solutions will come from PEOPLE.  We are fortunate to have some of the smartest, most dedicated people together working to make manufacturing a vibrant economic driver for our state.

Sarah Bourdeau, CIC, AIC

sbourdeau@foundersgrp.com

 

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