I was watching television last week, and they did a story on Jon Cooper, the Tampa Bay Lightning coach. There was a lot of great information and a lot of great philosophy on coaching but one quote he said really stood out to me.
He talked about in the NHL, there is parity, (there are 32 teams in the NHL). At that elite level, the players are all great, the coaches are all great, they all have great facilities, they all have the same high-tech equipment, everything tangible is equal. The difference is your team and that you get them all rowing the boat in the same direction.
It got me thinking. I have been saying the same thing about industry for a long time but with regards to cost. But when I used to say it, I was working at a large multi-national company with the financial resources to have up-to-date facilities, the newest and best equipment, and recruit top talent. The discussion focused on the offshoring of business and pointing out that once you get to that level of equipment and automation, the cost of labor means little.
But here was a sports coach saying with all things equal, the differentiator is people working together, and it is the difference between winning and losing.
I thought about our recent upgrades here at PlastiCert. We have purchased all new equipment in the last few years. We recently upgraded our facilities to provided good space for both work and breaks. Yet, we have been successful for years. It was that success that allowed us to earn the money to make all the investments in equipment and facilities.
Many injection molders have great equipment, great facilities, and even great management, but are their people rowing together?
So, it is true, it is not simply good people, but it is good people all rowing the boat in the same direction.
One of my management team mentioned the other day, “you know with all the new equipment, we’re not seeing huge gains in profits.” I thought, “yes, that wasn’t my expectation. Gains were already in place from our people. The new equipment was just to make their job, and our job, a little easier.”
Our people are what sets us apart. Can you say that about your key suppliers, especially your molder(s)? If not, give us a call.