Parsable Podcast

Build a Local Talent Supply Chain

Building tomorrow’s manufacturing workforce, according to Gregg Chamberlain, HR Talent Consultant and Founder of 3 Echo Consulting, will start locally.

On this episode of Conquering Chaos, Gregg joins us to discuss the importance of changing the education system to foster a system of aspiring, forward-thinking manufacturers.

What we talked about:

– Gregg’s journey from the military to HR

– Covid’s impact on the manufacturing industry

– Integrating modern technologies into educational programs

Check out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:

– https://www.linkedin.com/in/gregg-chamberlain/

– https://3echoconsulting.com/

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Check out the full episode below:

[00:00:00] Josh Santo: Welcome to Conquering Chaos, the show for manufacturing leaders. In each episode, we’re connecting you to the manufacturing leaders of today who are driving the innovations needed to future-proof the operations of tomorrow. If you feel like your time is spent fighting fires and trying to control the everyday chaos, this show is the show for you.

My name is Josh Santo, I’ll be your host. All right. Welcome to Conquering Chaos. I am super excited for our show today for two reasons, the topic and the guest. Now, like always, I want to tell you first a little bit about today’s guest.

After serving eight years in the US Army joining as an enlisted soldier and rising to the rank of captain, he entered the manufacturing industry as a third shift supervisor for Stanley Black & Decker where he spent the bulk of his career. During his 24 year tenure there, he transitioned from frontline leadership to human resources and eventually leading the HR global operations team.

Here today to talk with us about his firsthand experience of building talent pipelines, please welcome to the show, Gregg Chamberlain. Gregg, thank you so much for being here today.

[00:01:14] Gregg Chamberlain: Thanks, Josh. It’s certainly my pleasure. I’ve really been looking forward to this. Anytime I have the opportunity to talk about talent, it gets me excited. Anytime I have the opportunity to talk about talent in the manufacturing and supply chain space really gets me excited. Definitely looking forward to this.

[00:01:33] Josh: It’s certainly a timely and important topic. It’s something that’s come up pretty frequently, which I know that we’ll talk about but before we get too much into today’s episode, I did want to throw a couple of questions your way, just about your background.

You recently left Stanley Black & Decker. You started your own human resources consulting firm called 3 Echo Consulting. I’m curious about that time after your experience in the military when you joined manufacturing, I’d like to hear a little bit from you about what appealed to you and what your experience was like as a third shift supervisor.

[00:02:12] Gregg: Sure. I think one thing to share really about manufacturing and what got me interested in manufacturing even before I left the military is my mom was a single parent, she worked in manufacturing, she stuffed printed circuit boards years ago. She’d come home from work, she would tell me everything that happened that day or some of the new technologies. This was a while back.

Anytime I had a chance to visit her factory, it was exciting for me. I think that I guess if you could say, I got the bug in manufacturing, it certainly did. When I entered high school, one of the places that she worked had a phenomenal program where children of the employees could work in the manufacturing facility throughout the summer. I had an opportunity to work across the broad spectrum in manufacturing in high school.

I guess you could say it’s a little bit in my blood. When I did leave the military, you learned a lot about leadership in the military and I had a tremendous opportunity to have been led by tremendous leaders and had a tremendous opportunity to lead wonderful soldiers and great soldiers. It made a lot of sense when you come out of the military to step into these leadership roles, these supervisor roles.

I’ll have to admit it wasn’t easy. It was a tough transition coming from the military back into a civilian company. The thing that is different now than when I left the military and joined is, there are so many support groups now that helped with that transition and it’s great to see back then if you would have had somebody or a network support group to help you with that transition. It’d be great.

I came from a world in the military where it was one or two, this or that, or left or right. In the world of whether it was manufacturing or any civilian organizations, there’s just a little bit difference. It took me about a year or so to really adjust.

[00:04:25] Josh: It sounds like you had exposure at a young age, which I didn’t realize that, you mentioned your family, your mom was in manufacturing and that exposed you to what it was like there. It sounds like you took an affinity for it through that exposure at a young age.

[00:04:43] Gregg: Yes, I think you’re absolutely right. I’ve always been a little bit of a spearhead. I restore motorcycles. I’ve been riding motorcycles since I could ride a bicycle. I’ve always been a little bit of a spearhead.

When you think about all the different jobs out there, with the exception of a mechanic, being inside a manufacturing facility, you hear the sounds, you’ve got the smells of a manufacturing, it’s the visuals in the manufacturing side, those are the things that are just, they’ll never go away.

As you have mentioned, I’ve spent, my gosh, 20 years in manufacturing at a Fortune 200 company, primarily supporting manufacturing. I wouldn’t have had it any other way. The time that I got to spend in factories across the globe are really the best parts of my job.

[00:05:39] Josh: Part of the ability that you had to be exposed to so many different factories within the same company was your transition into HR leadership. I’m curious to hear from you, what was it about the HR side of things that really appeal to you?

[00:05:57] Gregg: I would go back a little bit towards the military. In the military, training is everything. If you’re not deployed, you’re spending most of your time training. I think that there was an appeal in human resources from the training aspect of it. I was intrigued. There was an opportunity.

Actually, there was an opportunity to step outside a third shift. I think everybody’s goal feels like it’s to get off of third shift and get back into a little bit of a normal shift. Part of the HR role at the time was training. To be able to go in and understand where the gaps are and understand where we can close those gaps from a training standpoint and make people just a little bit better in their jobs, it definitely appealed to me.

I think the one thing that definitely appealed to me is if you think about HR and not just the manufacturing pieces, if you do it the right way and you don’t box yourself in within the HR world, you have the ability to touch all parts of an organization, whether it’s manufacturing, supply chain, finance, commercial, marketing. I think that was one of the biggest things that appealed to me.

[00:07:14] Josh: It sounds like a combination of factors. First, that early exposure to manufacturing, that affinity that you had of just being mechanical in nature and being really drawn to you mentioned motorcycles in particular. Then your time in the military, developing that leadership. It sounds a little bit like this servant leadership type of approach as well as the opportunity to see that on a bigger scale with bigger departments ultimately served as some of the direction that you took with your career. This is a very timely topic.

There’s a big concern right now about how do we bring people into manufacturing? New people, particularly people from the younger generation. Here at Parsable, we’ve talked about this on previous podcast episodes, we’ve talked about this in webinars, and we talk almost daily with our customers about this crisis that manufacturing is facing. A significant portion of the workforce, made up of by baby boomers, they’re reaching retirement and in some cases, COVID-19 has actually exacerbated that situation.

There are already quite a bit of jobs open today and experts are estimating that over 2.4 million, and I’ve even heard some estimates up to 2.8 and 3 million jobs won’t be filled by 2028. It’s critical that manufacturing as an industry attract and retain millennials, Gen Z and prepare for generation alpha. I would like to pick your brain, Gregg, as someone who has experience here, why is it difficult for manufacturers to attract younger talent?

[00:08:53] Gregg: Obviously, COVID has made it challenging for manufacturing and other industries as well. I think we can all hope that that gets put in our rearview mirror sooner than later. I think our main challenge here, it’s really a perception issue. If you think about the newest generations and you think about their parents for a moment, these were new parents or thinking about becoming parents in the late ’80s and in the ’90s when we had some of the whole scale offshoring of manufacturing.

There was NAFTA, there was the– a lot of manufacturers were closing their factories in the US and they were moving them to Mexico and they were moving them to China. If you think about that for a moment and you think about who the original influencers, we always talk about these influencers out there, I think parents are first influencers and they’re our biggest influencers.

If you think about that for a moment, they probably haven’t necessarily been the best advocates of manufacturing because now those parents have millennials and Gen X and Gen Zs. I think that’s one of the biggest challenges out there. It’s certainly a perception issue. I think it’s hard to find, if you think about this age of social media, there’s not much out there bringing awareness to the manufacturing industry.

That’s why it’s fantastic to see this podcast series where it talks about manufacturing and you’re engaging different generational groups. Then I think the last thing, it really goes back into our education system. If you think about secondary schools for a moment, there’s not a lot of schools that have programs that focus in manufacturing.

When I’m in discussion with folks, I always think about, how great would it be if you had the widespread shop 2.0? It’s not necessarily the traditional shop class where you’re doing casting or you’re doing some fabrication, but a class to focus on the elements of industry 4.0, whether it’s automation, it’s virtual reality, it’s augmented reality, it’s additive.

How great would it be to revitalize shop class, but turn it into something that’s really aligned and talks about all the great technologies of industry 4.0?

[00:11:25] Josh: Well, these are great topics. I want to dig into each one that you brought up for a couple of reasons. I think you hit the nail on the head, this perception issue, and that ties into this idea of manufacturing in general, having a marketing issue.

Once you have this perception issue, you have to win over the opinions and what somebody has decided and made– whether it’s an assumption or it’s true, or whichever, once somebody has their mind made up that this is the way something is, it’s very difficult to overcome that.

Not only is there the perception issue, but there’s just that marketing that need to get the message out, which to your point is one of the reasons for the show here is we want to make sure that we are bringing awareness, but you call that specifically when parents were becoming parents of millennials of the Gen Z, this was during a time of offshoring.

It made manufacturing less likely to be a stable, secure career choice and it really impacted communities. I’ve talked with a few people who have shared their experiences with what happened when their small town, which really relied on the employment opportunities of one particular manufacturing facility, when that shut down, the impact that it has on the community is it’s pretty hard. It’s pretty tough.

Social media, where is that popular influence of here’s manufacturing or here’s what you can find? That ties into some of your second points, the education system. I want to break that into two ways because I liked how you put this idea of shop 2.0, I loved wood shop as a kid. I built a chest. I still have that chest. It’s got to be, Oh, goodness, 20 years old at this point.

It was still something that I loved and I made and I got to learn safety precautions, using tools, et cetera. It was just a really great experience, but I love how you said that idea of shop 2.0 because you’re starting to introduce those manufacturing, those modern day and even advanced manufacturing techniques. There’s also that idea and I’ve heard this was actually something brought up by another guest, his name is Jake hall. He goes by the Manufacturing Millennial.

You can find him on LinkedIn. He talked about how there was a focus on getting people to college, as opposed to getting people to technical and trade schools and how, in some instances, that also impacts who’s looking to do what within their career.

Aside from creating some social media influencers, which I do think we should do, when you think about that idea of the education system, or I should say maybe the gaps that we’re calling out as far as like, look, what led to these situation, regardless of what led to it, it starts to become our responsibility to overcome it. How do we overcome these different factors that are impacting manufacturers?

[00:14:25] Gregg: Yes. I think that there’s– There’s a whole host of things that I think we can do to try to overcome and really change that perception. The one thing, there was a famous politician at one point, a few years back and he said, all politics is local. I think that’s where it really begins to really build that local supply chain talent, if you will, and changing the perception begins locally as well.

If you think about it, any manufacturer is going to do everything that they can to find a local supplier of raw material or a local supplier of components. I think the same holds true for talent. I think it really begins and I touched on it earlier on it, it begins with the secondary schools and it begins with the local technical schools.

I know that doesn’t really sound much like a new idea, and I’m certainly sure that a lot of the folks listening to this podcast, they have great engagements already with local technical schools and secondary schools but really what I believe is, it really comes down to how you’re engaging these schools.

I’ll give you a great example of a public-private partnership, and just a great example of how do you change perceptions and how do you build a local talent supply chain and it’s a program in Jackson Tennessee called the LOOP program. What it stands for is it’s a local options and opportunities program.

What it is, is the local high schools in the Jackson Tennessee area, they’ve partnered with the manufacturer. It’s really providing students who are interested in manufacturing and maybe prefer hands-on learning versus classroom learning an opportunity to explore manufacturing. The way it works is their senior year is spent entirely in the manufacturing facility.

Half a day, they’re tied back virtually to their high school. They’ve got their core classes that they take virtually and then the rest of the day is spent on the manufacturing floor. There’s, hands-on opportunities to learn about manufacturing. It’s not just about, how to operate a press or how to operate a CNC, it’s everything. When we talk about the new technologies, it’s learning about industry 4.0.

Then you take it even a step further. You’ve worked very closely then with the local technical school so those students who graduate the program, a lot of them may want to continue with the company in the capacity that they were in. A lot of them may choose the technical school and they may want to pursue a trade or a maintenance tech, for example.

You build those relationships at the local level, and you began to really change the perception because not only are the students involved, but the parents are heavily involved as well. They spent time into manufacturing. Learning a little bit about what they do, they talked to the leadership there as well, and I think it ends up being really a win-win for all. It’s really trying to change that perception one step at a time, one drip at a time.

It’s been years that we’ve put ourselves in these thoughts here. We talked about the offshoring piece. You got to start that slow drip somewhere, and you got to start with the first step somewhere.

I think the other thing that I would add in, because this program is maybe geared more towards, some of the skilled trades and some of the folks out on the assembly line. The other thing that I’ve always thought is really important as well is, if you think about university recruitment for manufacturing engineers, supply chain, a lot of organizations, they’ve got their go-to national recruiting schedule. They’re going to the big schools around the US.

I think that’s great, but don’t lose sight of the local universities really to build your supply chain talent because I think the one thing you have to keep in mind is there is an increasing shift of newer generations to stay local and close to family.

I think you’ve got to really have a nice blend of your approach to campus recruiting. Don’t forget about some of those local universities as well. There’s some great talent that’s coming out of there. It works well for them who want to stay maybe in the area or close to family.

[00:19:13] Josh: I think you put it in a very clever way. I completely agree with you about politics, really being a local level. The local level is where you really have a sustainable impact, but I love how you put that. You source your raw materials locally, as best you can, your greatest resource being the people. Why wouldn’t you source your resources locally as well?

I love how you brought up that idea of partnering with the local schools, whether it is a high school or a technical school or a community college or a local college, whatever the case may be. How do you really start to build that locally because it does a couple of things not only are you trying to source local talent, but by being more engaged with this community, that’s brand awareness.

That’s an awareness of this company exists here and look at the impact that they’re trying to have on the community, which that community thing, if we start talking about generational preferences, an impact on life. The impact that you’re having on whether it’s the planet earth, whether it is the community, that is a very important topic to modern day consumers.

Those modern day consumers are also the people that would make up the next generation of the workforce. That the more that you are, in a sense, serving, for a lack of a better word, that you’re serving that local experience, it sounds like that’s one of the ways to overcome these negative perceptions and show we’re not that manufacturing industry. We understand where that came from. Let us show you what it’s like today and how rewarding it could be.

[00:20:57] Gregg: There is no better time than today, when you think about the new technologies to really show off manufacturing. It is very different than it was 20 year ago, 25 years ago. If you think about all the technologies and industry 4.0 and sell those technologies, that’s the way for us to differentiate ourselves.

As you said, that’s the way to change the perception as well and we’ve just got to do a better job I think of sharing that and getting that message out there, across the community, as you said.

[00:21:33] Josh: Hey, we’re going to take a real quick break to hear from our sponsors, stay tuned for more Conquering Chaos.

 

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[00:23:04] Josh: Now, back to the show. We shared a little bit about the background. We talked a little bit about some examples of what can work in building that local supply chain of talent. What’s the impact if these perceptions and if this issue is not overcome?

[00:23:24] Gregg: I think it feels like every week, there’s a different statistic out there of these projections in terms of not filling manufacturer. I think the one I saw just recently was maybe a Deloitte that said 2.1 million jobs in manufacturing unfilled by by 2030. Those numbers are staggering.

I think, going back to the COVID crisis, I think it exposed a lot of vulnerabilities and organizations, supply chains and we know there are other disruptors out there. They’re lurking, they occasionally rear their ugly heads, if you think about tariffs, commodity inflation, geopolitical tensions and so on. I think what you’ve seen then is these manufacturing organizations, they’re trying to build resiliency in their supply chains.

They’re doing that through the new technologies, they’re localizing suppliers, as we talked about, they’re shifting traditional linear supply chains to network supply chains through connected factories and automation and so on. The impact of not overcoming the manufacturing talent shortages is your supply chain is only going to be resilient when you have that talent available that can apply those new technologies and design the manufacturing processes, forecast and plan your supply, build and ship the products and the list goes on.

When I stepped out of the military and there’s third shift supervisor, I had an operations manager that you looked up to. I think he had been in the industry for 30-plus years and he sets up the very simply to me. He says, “Gregg, if you don’t have materials on your assembly line, you don’t produce. If you don’t have assemblers on your production line, you don’t produce.”

It was as simple as that, it have resonated with me. Very simple, very fundamental, but it’s absolutely true. I think there’s a significant impact out there if we don’t overcome this and really, again, one step at a time, one drip at a time changes perception out there.

[00:25:32] Josh: It’s a huge risk. I love that to the point. If you don’t have the raw materials, you can’t make the product. If you don’t have the people to operate, then you can’t it either. There’s so much focus on resiliency and adapting, but you can’t do that without people, so it’s critical.

Another question that I have that comes to mind is, we talked a little bit about it being a local focus, that’s where it should be, but whose responsibility is it to start to fix this and fill these gaps?

[00:26:04] Gregg: I think, ultimately, it rests in the hands of manufacturers. I definitely don’t want to diminish everything else manufacturers are doing. They’ve got a lot on their plates right now, especially over the last year. What they’ve been able to do since March of last year, it’s nothing short of amazing.

Since they are at the point of impact, they’re obviously positioned best to influence these new generations. In the same breath, I feel it’s very strongly, it’s a matter of– we’ve got to build those public-private partnerships and collaboration’s to divide and conquer and go after this. It’s got to be industry, it’s got to be educators, it’s got to be the teachers. I think government has a role to play in this as well.

It ultimately rests in the hands of the manufacturers, but I do think to conquer something like this, we really have to divide and conquer and it’s going be these public-private partnerships that we’ve got to be able to build and engage and really not go after this single handedly. Everybody has a role to play in my opinion.

[00:27:21] Josh: I absolutely agree. I think that we’re starting to see more and more acknowledgement of that. Especially as people dig into some of the root causes of the perceptions that you described before. When it comes to that perception, there’s a lot to it. Some of it is taking inventory of what actually happened and then some of that is focused that, for my generations, the focus being on college. Why was the focus so much on college, over technical schools?

Really digging into what you’re saying is, how do we get the educators involved? It is a lot to say, this is purely manufacturing’s fault, when ultimately, if we don’t solve this problem, it’s not just manufacturers who are going to be impacted. When we look around and it’s all these products that we live, love, and rely on, now, all of a sudden, they’re not showing up in our house, that’s no longer a manufacturing problem.

[00:28:14] Gregg: It’s everybody’s problem.

[00:28:16] Josh: It’s everybody’s problem. To the point of especially when we start thinking about some of the smaller manufacturers who are also really struggling just as much as the larger major manufacturers, I think you brought up some good examples of where to get started and where to focus.

I think it would be interesting to hear from you, if someone or if a local manufacturer doesn’t have a program like this in place, how can they get started getting that awareness out there in the community, building relationships with schools and developing programs that both introduce and educate about manufacturing, but also help them source new talent?

[00:28:57] Gregg: I think it starts, so it’s a great question. If you think about the program that I mentioned, the LOOP program, the schools aren’t necessarily going to come to you. You have to go to the schools and you have to insert yourself into the schools, you have to get yourself in front of teachers, for example. We have to change the perception with them.

We talked about social influencers, we talked about parents as influencers as well and teachers are those influencers as well. I think rather than waiting for them to come to us as manufacturers, we have to go to them and really talk about, how do we build these partnerships? Most importantly, how do we convey to them that we want them to be part of our overall or an integral part of our overall talent pipeline?

I think, one way to start is becoming thought in curriculum partners with them. I think, especially technical schools, for example, I think one of the things that they like to hear from industry partners, whether it’s a small company or a larger manufacturer or a larger company, is the curriculum that we have, is it meeting your needs? What do we need to do to adjust or make our curriculum one that fills the gaps that you need from a talent standpoint?

I think the more that we can become thought partners and curriculum advisors if you will, I think it starts to build those relationships and it builds that public-private partnerships. Then I think again, the more we can connect students with those great opportunities, I think the more successful the schools are going to be, the more successful connections we make with students.

I think those partnerships are only going to continue to grow but if there’s one piece of advice that I would give, you really have to insert yourself into these schools. I’ll share another program that I thought worked really, really well, if you think about teachers, for example, and whether it’s a large company or relative small company, how do you begin to build these relationships and how do you get that message out there?

I’ve been a really big supporter of teacher externships and really what that is, it’s a program where we invite a school teacher and hopefully that school teacher is may be in a technical capacity at a secondary school. We invite them to spend a month or two with a manufacturing company for the summer.

The idea there is that they learn and they observe and the whole spirit behind the teacher externship program is it really helps them understand the array of technologies that are out there. It gives them ideas to go back and adjust the curriculums and influence students. They become ambassadors of supply chain and manufacturing.

One thing that I heard most from these teachers who participated in the externship program is, “I had no idea this is what manufacturing was all about. This is amazing. More teachers need to see this.” Then in return, again, large company or small company, we learned from the teacher really what motivates these students and then what we can do to influence them. Those are programs that you can do a small organization, a small company, a medium size or a large organization.

[00:32:36] Josh: There’s a couple of layers to what you broke down. You mentioned it’s not just partnering with the school, it’s partnering with the teacher and you’re not just partnering with the teacher, you’re trying to appeal to the students. You’ve got different stakeholders there and the question I have for you is on that subject, how do you make it appealing and beneficial to the schools, to the teachers, and the students as well?

[00:32:59] Gregg: As I said before, there’s no better time with the technologies of industry 4.0 to engage students, to engage schools. I think what we’ve got to show how these digital technologies have been embedded in almost all aspects of supply chain and manufacturing.

Again, it’s virtual reality, it’s additive, it’s digital twins of a factory. Who would have thought that we would add the ability to design an entire factory on a computer before you move any piece of equipment into it. I think there’s no better time to appeal to students, to appeal to parents, to appeal to schools and it’s all about getting the students excited.

There’s a competition for talent out there right now between manufacturing and fast food and retail. It’s a tremendous way for manufacturing to differentiate themselves from retail and from fast food, for example, and other industries.

I think you’ll leverage the technologies and one thing that I’ve always said too is, if you go back for a moment and you think about the you’re at a hiring event and every company has their booth, they’ve got their flag draped over their table. They have a couple of items that they’ve manufactured and now I think there’s a lot of the virtual booths and things are done virtual but your hiring booth or your virtual, it has to look a lot different than it did years ago to appeal and really help change that perception.

Why not have some feeds of some of the VR and AR that you’re doing in your factories and the robotics and the ability to interact with automation and robotics and really just leverage it and take advantage of it and show it off because we’re just not doing that out there.

The perception is that it’s the old, dirty, oily, manufacturing of years ago. That any time, the factory is going to pick up and move and that couldn’t be further from the truth.

[00:35:10] Josh: Especially here recently, right? There’s such a focus on bringing production back to the states. We saw the impact that COVID had on shutting down the supply chain and there’s definitely a renewed focus on how do we avoid something like that? This once in a lifetime event, how do we take the appropriate measures to make sure that doesn’t happen?

Now, one thing I want to call out and the listeners, you can’t see this but when Gregg starts to talk about this, his face just lights up .You can tell that this is something he’s passionate about and it’s a delight. What he’s getting at, he didn’t use this word but I’m going to use it for him,

fun.

When we’re talking about VR or talking about these new technologies they’re exciting, my generation, Generation Z, generation alpha coming up, all growing up with different technologies and part of breaking that perception is showing it’s not dirty, dangerous. I forget the last D. It’s typically three of these that are associated with it, but how it is becoming the same great technology that you enjoy using your personal lives, how that’s becoming pervasive within manufacturing as well, and it’s ultimately focusing on showing the fun side, showing the possibility.

When you appeal to the student because I know especially this year, teachers are having a tough time getting engagement from their students. It’s tough, but being able to bring that fun, that’s going to appeal to teachers. That’s going to appeal to schools. That enjoyment, that wanting to learn, the wanting to show up and be engaged, that’s something that’s really going to make quite the argument for a partnership, a local partnership.

Well, I know that we are running up close on time, so I want to make sure, I want to pivot to one last thing. After your career, Gregg, at Stanley Black & Decker, you started a consulting firm, 3 Echo Consulting.

I think you gave us some great ideas and it’s clear that you’ve got a lot of experience in this. Even on your website, one of the things you call out as an accomplishment is building a talent pipeline. How can the team at 3 Echo Consulting help our listeners?

[00:37:22] Gregg: Sure. If you think about strategy and policy deployment, that’s much harder than strategy and policy development. Especially in this VUCA world that we live in. Years ago, we talked about VUCA in the military and it was just part of our daily vernacular. It was just the things that we lived with.

Now, it’s embedded itself in our everyday lives. Where 3 Echo can help is really it’s the development, it’s the alignment and most importantly, it’s the deployment of HR strategies, including talent strategies. This is probably the most important point to support the overall business strategy.

What I see a lot of times is there’s misalignment, there are too many times I see where the HR strategies aren’t necessarily aligned with the overall business strategies. I think that’s very, very important. I’ve spent the majority of my 20-plus years in HR supporting manufacturing, supply chain, as I said before and as your listeners, I got a big smile on my face. I would never have had it any other way. I absolutely love manufacturing so I’m very familiar with the challenges and the opportunities exist.

I know when we need to zoom out to zoom in. Sometimes before you can zoom in and bring things into focus, you got to step back and zoom out a little bit. Working with your HR functions, working with your operations leaders, we can build that foundation of strategy development, strategy deployment.

I’ll leave it with this, somebody very wise once told me not too terribly long ago that said, “Asking for help is not a sign of weakness but rather a sign of strength.” At 3 Echo, we’re ready to help you balance that equation of people plus process is equal value.

[00:39:13] Josh: I love that. I think you’re so right about, you could spend all this time developing a plan but it’s the deployment that matters and that is where a lot of activities fail. What I’ve learned is that you can spend the time the very long, long time, trying to figure it out on your own, or you can get the experts to come in and save you that time because 2028, the big estimate of when things are really going to be a problem even more so than they are now, that’s coming quickly.

You really want to be able to start quickly and when you think about partnering with schools, you’re talking four years in advance. Starting earlier. It’s better to start now than not. On that note, Gregg, how can manufacturers who need your help get in contact with you?

[00:39:57] Gregg: Sure. Best place, Josh, is at my website, it’s www.3echoconsulting. That’s the number 3, echo, consulting, all one word.

[00:40:08] Josh: Awesome. 3 Echo Consulting. Please, reach out to Gregg. This is a critical problem, and there’s no need for you to solve it on your own. Let’s work together. It’s exactly what Gregg said, it’s not just the manufacturing problem. It’s not just your manufacturing facilities problem, is all of our problems.

Gregg, thank you so much for joining us here today. I thoroughly appreciated our conversation. I feel like I learned a lot, even just in our brief convo together.

[00:40:33] Gregg: Josh, it was my pleasure. Had a great time. Thank you.

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[00:40:38] Josh: That’s the show. Thank you so much for joining us today. Conquering Chaos is brought to you by Parsable. If you’re a fan of these conversations, subscribe to the show and leave us a rating on Apple Podcasts. Just have the number of stars you think the show deserves. As always, feel free to share what’s top of mind for you, and who you think we should talk to next. Until then, talk soon. Take care, stay safe. Bye-bye.

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