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Lou Kren Lou Kren
Senior Editor

Take Advantage of the Opportunities

July 1, 2017

The same year that birthed what would become the Precision Metalforming Association, 1942, saw the U.S. government institute Scrap Days, encouraging citizens to donate metals, rubber, fabrics and other materials for the war effort. From trash to treasure, the unwanted was recast as the needed: tanks, guns, tires and uniforms.

For those not in the armed services, Scrap Days provided an opportunity, in a unique way, for Americans to take advantage of what they had at their disposal. By contributing, they assisted in their country’s cause and, by extension, in their own future.

The term ‘to take advantage’ tends to have a negative connotation, and in some cases that’s more than justifiable. But, in many ways it’s not always a zero-sum game where one wins at the tragic expense of another. Taking advantage is a map to success in business and in life.

The Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) is 75 years young, and its member roster numbers in the high hundreds…large and small manufacturers and suppliers to the industry. Everyone pays a membership fee based on company size, and pays more to attend conferences, sponsor an association event or advertise in our publications. In return, PMA provides a powerful voice of the industry to decision makers wielding the power to affect the industry in ways positive and negative. PMA offers career guidance and training from the classroom to the shop floor to the top floor, providing the industry with skilled employees. It provides facts and figures, technology updates and trends, and sales and marketing ideas to help members master their markets, processes and opportunities, leading to improved ROIs and bottom lines. It offers a vast array of networking opportunities, enabling members to share with, and learn from, their peers.

PMA offers all of this and much more, there for the taking. This is where taking advantage comes in. Those that seem to make the most effort to participate gain the most benefits—we hear it time and again from members who have volunteered for committees or district events, or who take part in the various events, conferences and seminars. From these volunteers and active participants, PMA receives valuable feedback, positive and negative, to help shape and improve future offerings. PMA can’t continuously improve without you—and, in my opinion, vice versa.

Besides looking back on PMA’s 75 years as well as its future and that of the industry, this issue includes other articles on technology and trends. One of these addresses controls, and the alarming trend of metalformers bypassing die protection, tonnage monitoring and other equipment-monitoring and control functions. It’s not that they haven’t invested in the technology. They have. What they’ve failed to do is take advantage of it and all of the benefits it can bring, all in the name of eking out a bit more production. If that’s not the definition of living on borrowed time, I’m not sure what is. Now I don’t own a press and I don’t run a manufacturing operation. It is easy for me to spout off about this topic. But if you don’t listen to me, listen to the experts in these fields: suppliers of the technology, and manufacturers who have taken advantage of all that it offers and have many success stories to share. They share them in the pages of MetalForming and our sister publications, and at PMA conferences and events. This is a perfect opportunity for metalformers to learn, and to take advantage.

Our industry is bubbling over with opportunity. From the value of associations to the expertise of manufacturing peers and suppliers, we have the chance to contribute, to learn and grow. It’s a must that we do all we can to seize these opportunities. Thanks to the foresight of its founders 75 years back, PMA now offers a platform for metalforming success, for contributing, learning and growing.

Warren Buffet once said, “Someone's sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago."

Take advantage of that shade!

Industry-Related Terms: Die, Lines, Run, Scrap
View Glossary of Metalforming Terms

Technologies: Management


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