Tag : manufacturing

entrepreneur

What do all successful entrepreneurs have in common?

What Do Successful Entrepreneurs Have in Common?

Most entrepreneurs are like a Lady GaGa song: they’re just Born This Way. Yet even the most attuned business owners have challenges that can potentially hinder them from reaching their potential and creating a successful company.

All business leaders have something to learn. Below, we look at some of these lessons that have refined some of the world’s greatest entrepreneurs. These are common threads that bind them and set them apart from the pack.

1. They Cast a Vision for the Purpose and Direction of Their Company
Entrepreneurs always know why their company exists and where it is headed. They have a deep understanding of these two concepts either because they know them instinctively or they have learned them through both their successes and failures. They can communicate both the purpose and the direction of their company in a clear, succinct manner to their board, company executives, and the entire team on all levels. They inspire both the entry-level workers and the CEOs by casting a vision that is both practical and powerful.

What does it mean to cast a vision? In a nutshell, the entrepreneur communicates what the company is about, the culture that the leadership will create and the team will cultivate, and what the end game is. The vision is a roadmap that consists of dreams, goals, benchmarks, and assessments for performance. The vision gives everyone a clear understanding of their role in the organization and how their personal objectives align with the company’s aspirations.

2. They Seek Out Opportunities for Business Growth and Success
Entrepreneurs don’t just allow things to happen. Rather, they make them happen. Business leaders plan, scheme, organize, discuss, research, and innovate. Their intentional leadership sets the pace for the entire company. They are always moving forward and never satisfied with the status quo.

Successful leaders ask:

What are the gaps in our company’s performance?

What tools can we utilize to improve our processes?

What new products or services can we create or sell?

Who do we need to hire to lead this segment of our company?

How can we improve employee satisfaction and performance?

How can we best serve or connect with our customers?

How can we boost our reputation or image in the industry?

What is the competition doing that we need to be doing?

3. They Recognize and Address Failure Head-On
Even the best entrepreneurs are not immune to mistakes and failures — neither are the people in their company. Successful entrepreneurs embrace failures as much as they do successes because they recognize both as teaching tools that strengthen the company.

Some of the greatest failures can lead to some of the best ideas and solutions if everyone in the room is willing to accept responsibility for the failure — starting with the company’s owner, the entrepreneur.

The question every successful entrepreneur asks is: What did we learn from this mistake?

A careful and honest analysis of the defeat opens up a world of possibilities for doing it better the next time. It does not matter if…

The company went bankrupt.

The product did not sell.

The current system is not working.

The employee had to be fired.

The business fell prey to a PR disaster.

What matters is what comes next. What is the entrepreneur’s reaction? What is the very next step that he or she will take?

4. They Recognize Great Talent and Know How to Utilize It
Some companies only hire within. Other companies only seek fresh new employees to bring new life into the organization. Both are great strategies. However, an entrepreneur’s guiding principle is neither. Rather, he or she is on a relentless pursuit to discover and utilize the best talent on the planet regardless of where that individual resides.

Question: Are you making the best use of the talent within your organization? Are you seeking the best talent in your city, region, or nationwide? OR are you settling for mediocrity just to fill a position?

Successful entrepreneurs continuously assess talent and redistribute abilities as needed. It does not matter that a person was hired to perform a function. If the entrepreneur discovers abilities in this person that would be best suited somewhere else in the company, then it’s a win for everyone to assign the team member if that person is willing to take on a new role.

Entrepreneurs hire HR managers who are resourceful recruiters and know how to attract ridiculously talented individuals to work for their company. They are willing to pay a little more, add a few perks, and provide a favorable working environment to retain employees that demonstrate exceptional abilities.

5. They Embody a High Level of Discipline and Maturity
Entrepreneurs are willing to do things that no one else will do so that they can receive the benefits that no one else will get. They immediately recognize what is important and what is a distraction and respond to both accordingly.

Entrepreneurs get up early, stay up late, go the extra mile, and demonstrate exemplary behavior. When everyone else is whining and complaining about the industry, their income, their circumstances, or how unfair life is, and people are, successful entrepreneurs take full responsibility for everything around them, take control of their circumstances, and make life happen.

Question: What areas of your life do you lack discipline? How is this lack of discipline affecting your personal life, and, in turn, affecting your company?

Entrepreneurs don’t look at the positive or negative side of things. Instead, they merely see cause and effect. They don’t rely on belief. Rather, they rely on action. They are rarely governed by their emotion. Adversely, they rely on their knowledge, intellect, and common sense. How they feel on any given day is likely to pass. What they do in spite of how they feel, however, is likely to have lasting consequences.

They can cut through the crap to see what needs to be done and not hesitate to do it.

6. They Create Healthy Relationship with Others
Let’s be honest. Nobody wants to work with a jerk. Nobody wants to be around someone who is highly critical, manipulative, controlling or fails to see the good in others. Even worse is trying to work with someone who lies, cheats, and steals to get what they want.

A successful entrepreneur has a sincere and authentic desire to develop healthy personal and working relationships and will do what it takes to see those relationships flourish. What does this mean from a practical standpoint?

Entrepreneurs…

Are always honest, yet know how to communicate their honesty.

Do not think twice about apologizing when they’ve made a mistake.

Reward and praise others for doing a good job.

Use motivation — not manipulation — as a tool to stimulate action.

Learn to laugh…a lot!

Find solutions for conflict — not play the blame game.

7. They Know How to Have Fun
Believe it or not, successful entrepreneurs are successful because they DON’T WORK ALL THE TIME. They understand the balance between work, family, and personal fun, and they respect that balance. Within the organization, entrepreneurs know when and how to give their workers time off. They throw company parties, outlandish contests, and — when it’s appropriate — spend time with their team outside of work.

Entrepreneurs go home and spend time with their family and friends. They veg in front of the TV and watch the game or spend a Saturday on the green. They have a hobby that takes their minds off the cares of the world. They cherish time spent with others, and they don’t apologize for that occasional moment when they do nothing at all.

In short, entrepreneurs understand what it means to be an entrepreneur. They study from other successful business owners, read books about entrepreneurship, attend leadership seminars, and find out all they can about their lot in life. They learn the most important concept of all: how to lead an organization without self-destructing.

Quality Control CNC Machine Shop

The Role of Quality Control in Manufacturing

Quality control in manufacturing can be defined as the oversight of the different aspects of the manufacturing process. The main goal of implementing quality control in manufacturing is ensuring that products produced conform to the company’s, industry’s as well as consumer expectation every time. Having a system for quality control monitors everything including the parts being produced as well as the employees that are assembling the parts. It is not only the customer that benefits from quality control by receiving products of high quality, but also the manufacturer since it reduces costs and increases efficiency.

To effectively implement quality control programs, you have to approach with caution. Imperfect implementation can be costly to the company. Effective implementation starts by defining the quality standard of each product. Then define the number of products to be tested before proceeding to employee training. Finally, there should be a communication system to report defects or potential issues in cnc manufacturing.

Below is an outline of the role of quality control in manufacturing in US.

Risk minimization
There is more to minimizing risks than having safety gear on the factory floor. There are plenty of other financial risks that should be considered not only in the factory but also after the product leaves the factory. Product recalls can be quite an expensive endeavor, they also influence the customer negatively hence tarnishing the name of your brand indefinitely. An effective quality control system that includes vigorous inspections at different stages of the manufacturing process helps ascertain that all manufactured products meet the minimum requirements before reaching the consumer.

Resource conservation
Resource conservation is important for manufacturers since it reduces the total upfront material expenses. It also helps improve the company’s reputation with its customers. With less assembly foul-ups there is greater throughput and higher gains for the manufacturer. The role played by quality control in resource conservation is making this a reality.

Effective compliance
Every industry has a set of regulations that it must meet including manufacture of cnc machining. Failure to comply with the standards set can be an expensive affair. It can also lead to production bottlenecks. A company with effective quality control systems will evenly distribute the checks throughout the entire process. Ensuring there are no financial losses resulting from bottlenecks in the manufacturing process.

Consistency
Consistency of the products produced and offered to the market plays a huge role in the overall company reputation. If you are not in a position to consistently produce high quality products, it will reflect badly on your company. Consistency not only affects your company reputation but it also affects production costs. If consistency is not upheld in manufacturing, you will definitely experience fluctuations in production costs. Quality control plays a huge role in ensuring you are consistent in the quality of products produced.

Improved final product
Naturally, products from a stringent and intensive the quality control environment are of higher quality. Quality control ensures that each step meets the standards that you have set. The results will be an improved product of high quality.

As evidenced above, quality control is an essential part in the manufacturing process. Not only does it ensure the company produces high quality products but also ensures that there is proper adherence to the standards set by the regulators.

Precision Machine Shop

Things to Look for When Hiring a Precision Machine Shop

People should look for several items when they are choosing a precision machine shop to make certain that they make the right choice.

Communication Skills
The person in the shop that you are telling about your job or project should have great communication skills. They should be skilled at their job and know what the others in the shop can accomplish. If this person is experienced, they will also have questions for you to help you to describe your job in as much detail as possible. Great communication is the first skill to look for, because if you and the shop manager are not on the same page, your project may not come out as you saw it.

Innovative Technology
A good precision machine shop is only as good as the available technology they use and it is based on the technician’s knowledge to use it. Research what types of equipment are needed to manufacture a prototype of your project. Then ask what types of equipment the machine shop uses such as CNC Machining, Manual Machining and Wire EDM. Also, ask if the process uses more than one type of machining for the run. The machine shop should also be able to have certified technicians to run the software available for the process so they can implement any changes in the design that you may ask for. Shops with the latest technology are forward thinking and will learn and implement new processes to keep up with the rising technology needed.

References and Samples of Work
A great machine shop will have a project book with photos of some of their past work along with the customer’s names and phone number and won’t be afraid to share these things with you. If they don’t give you references or explain past processes, they may be hiding something about their performance from you. The project book should have their most difficult jobs that they completed in it to show how capable the machine shop is in their business.

Flexibility
Machine shops that are proficient in their work will have some sort of process to allow flexibility in the project while it is underway. They should report to you at certain steps of the process to make certain they are on track and be able to change things if it isn’t to your specifications. This helps to get the first prototype correct and sets in place the specifics for a full production run of your products. If they don’t have a schedule set up, you may want to look elsewhere for a precision machine shop that is more compliant.

Quality Control
All machine shops should have a quality control inspector, whether in-house or out of house to ensure that your project meets all of the specifications that it should. They should be willing to talk about their quality certifications such as ISO 9001 and AS9100 standards and share with you what types of equipment they use to ensure the standards are met.

Looking for these items will help you to find a quality precision machine shop that you can use for prototypes, parts and projects of any size to successfully fulfill your wishes and demands.

Machine Shop

History of Machine Shops

A machine shop is a specialized room, building, or big company where CNC machining and other types of machining are done. The activities that take place in such a shop involve experts/machinists using various machining tools and cutting tools to come up with different parts. People tend to think that a machine shop must be a massive building with complex equipment but this isn’t true.

A typical machine shop can either be a portion of a large factory or simply a small store such as a job shop. The various parts manufactured are usually sold to multiple lines in the US manufacturing industry, car industry, and even the aviation industry. The production of these critical parts typically involves cutting, shaping of the parts, drilling, and finishing.

History of Machine Shops

The history of machine shops can be traced back to the 19th century when the first mechanical engineering schools started to come up in the U.S. The first machine shop appeared around this time. It is also during this time that the industrial revolution was at its peak and there was a high demand for various parts. Before this era, critical parts and tools were mainly produced in local workshops in villages and cities. However, the production was limited to small-scale, and the parts were primarily sold to local CNC manufacturing artisans.

Production of parts in large factories took place on site where every part was produced individually. As time passed by, the plants started to come up with their workshops to deal with the production of the required parts. During those days, the textile was still the dominant raw material.

After the 19th Century

Further developments in mechanical engineering CNC machining took place in Germany, Scotland, and England after the 19th century which led to the development of cheaper and simple techniques for the massive production of steel. This development triggered the rise of second industrial revolution which played a significant role in the electrification of factories, mass production of parts, and also an uprise of more US manufacturing schools.

Machine shops gained popularity around this time as they were commonly referred to locations where complicated mechanical parts are cut to the required size and carefully put together to form complete mechanical units.

However, the rise of the machine shops came along with its fair share of both manufacturing and organizational problems. This triggered the emergence of various theories and publications trying to solve the problems.

One of the earliest publications in the field of mechanical engineering which gained a lot of popularity was a series of books titled; “Modern machines_ Shop economics” that was authored by Horace Lucian.

20th Century

The beginning of 20th century saw an increase in the number of publications relating to machine shops with various authors including Frederick Winslow Taylor and Howard Monroe More funds were directed towards research and invention which led to the invention of the electric motors in late 20th century.

The electric motors took over power supply of the common machine tools from the conventional mechanical belt. This era also ushered in CNC automation and numeric control in the field of manufacturing in the USA. The two aspects production design and primary production became integrated.

ISO 9001

What is ISO and What are the Steps to Becoming ISO Certified?

ISO 9001 originated from the conglomeration of two different organizations namely United Nations Standard Coordinating Committee (UNSCC) and International Federation of the National Standardizing Associations (IFNSA) in 1946 when over 25 nations convened at the Institute of Civil Engineers in central London.

ISO (International Organization for Standardization) creates all the essential documents that provide specific guidelines, requirements, specifications, or characteristics that are used to ensure that materials, processes, products, and services are highly fit for their purpose. The body has published over 22025 International standards which can be purchased from the ISO store. The standards cover all sectors including manufacturing in USA, mechanical engineering schools, and even CNC automation.

The ISO 9001 standards bring real and more measurable benefits in various sectors since the standards underpin the technology most industries rely on and ensures quality is adhered to in every stage of CNC machining and CNC manufacturing. Some of the benefits of being ISO 9001 certified include improved efficiency and cost savings, widened market potential, higher level of client service which leads to higher customer satisfaction, and compliance with procurement tenders.

What Are the Steps to Becoming ISO 9001 Certified?

Obtaining an ISO certification for US manufacturing schools or any other industry player requires a significant investment of time, effort, and money. This is a process that will take some time to complete. Below are the essential steps to be followed while seeking ISO certification.

Select a Credible Certification Body

The journey towards being ISO certified starts with identifying a qualified certification body to help you in the process. Since most of the ISO 9001 standards for mechanical engineering are based on a three-year cycle, most of the certification parties will expect the company to sign up a minimum three-year agreement to be considered. Some of the certification bodies will insist on visiting your company several times a year to assess the progress, but a single visit is usually enough to establish the milestones achieved towards the certification.

Develop a Management System

Developing a Management System is an essential part of achieving ISO certification standards. There is the Quality Management System for ISO 9001 standard and the Environmental Management System for the ISO 14001 standard. The core components of the quality management system include analysis and improvement, provision of resources, processes of management activities, and product realization. Once you’ve developed your management system, you’ll be required to fully implement the system, verify if it’s effective, and register it.

Stage 1 Audit

Once you have the quality management system in place, a thorough audit of company activities is what follows. An auditor evaluates your existing systems and provides a well-analysed report identifying suitable actions that need to be undertaken to meet the specific standard. Stage 1 audit is mainly used as a roadmap to the next phase of auditing, so there is no need to worry if you feel like the company is underprepared.

Stage 2 Audit

Stage 2 audit involves fixing all the problems that were identified in stage 1 audit. Once you’ve implemented in the recommendations put forward in the report of stage one audit, an auditor will come in again to complete stage two audit. The purpose of stage two audit is to determine the effectiveness and efficiency of your management system and to establish whether it meets all the requirement of the ISO 9001 standards that you want. If the system is good and it meets all the requirements, then the company will be recommended for ISO certification.