PC2016: A Winning Bet
Posted on Thursday, April 14, 2016
Powder Coating 2016 is now in the books. This week offered attendees and exhibitors alike the opportunity to network with hundreds of industry colleagues and peers in an intimate setting.
Held at the Georgia International Convention Center in Atlanta, the week got under way with PCI’s popular Powder Coating 101: Basic Essentials Workshop, on Monday and Tuesday, April 11-12. The sold-out workshop offered both classroom and hands-on training demonstrations. The lab portion of the workshop was at Georgia Power.
Wednesday morning’s General Session kicked off with the recognition of Powder Coated Tough magazine’s 10 year anniversary as well as a tip of the hat to its editor, Sharon Spielman, for her work on PCT since the publication’s beginning.
Then Conor Cuneen, a motivational speaker from Naperville, Ill., offered an insightful look at the Gift of GAB—Goals, Attitude, Behavior. The Irishman Speaks presentation explained the importance of having a clear goal vision. He offered the example of Howard Schultz, chairman and CEO of Starbucks, who once said that everyone will walk around with a Starbuck’s cup in their hand. Schultz had a clear goal vision and made it happen. Next, Cuneen spoke of Genchi Genbutsu, a Japanese philosophy that translates to “go and see” or “go to the source.” This is a key principle of the Toyota Production System. Cuneen encouraged the audience to go to the source and learn. Next he covered the importance of understanding the non-negotiables of your customers. When the chairman of McDonald’s said in the early 2000s how nice it would be to offer customers fresh, hot food and clean restrooms, he was saying how important it is to get the basics right. Dubbed “restroom marketing,” this is crucial for your success.
The Irishman then gave the audience three simple concepts to help get their teams involved and engaged in the business.
1. Praise or compliment a co-worker every day.
2. Hear the words “thank you” every day.
3. Make someone smile every day.
Cuneen then asked, “What do I want my attitude to be?” He reiterated a person’s ability to choose their attitude by offering the example of Viktor Frankl, an Auschwitz concentration camp inmate during World War II. Frankl used a psychotherapeutic method that involved identifying a purpose in life to feel positively about, and then immersively imagined that outcome.
Finally, Cuneen explained how your behavior is your brand. What is the brand experience you are offering to your customers? He left the audience to ponder, “What would the person cleaning your hotel room right now think about you?”
Phil Phillips of Chemark Consulting Group spoke about the trends that he sees in the industry. He says that powder coatings’ profitable growth depends on four elements: region of the world, ability to “sell” value, market spaces chosen, and real innovation acros the value chains of activity. He spoke of the gap between the early adopters and the early majority of the five-stage early adopters cycle. He also touched on the history vs. other innovative coatings.
The technical conference took place on Wednesday and Thursday, April 13-14, with general sessions each morning, followed by concurrent breakout technical sessions. Attendees got to peruse the two-day tabletop exhibition that featured powder coating manufacturers, powder coating application equipment, system houses, chemical suppliers and the various services and supplies that support the powder coating industry.
After the sessions on Wednesday, show goers enjoyed Casino Night, with gaming tables that paid out in raffle tickets for the chance to win PCI packs (a PCI shirt, PCI pens, Powder Coated Tough mousepads, and a half-price Powder Coating 202 Workshop), powder coated YETI tumblers, Powder Coating: The Complete Finishers Handbook, and a registration for the annual meeting. It’s a sure bet that fun was had by all.
After Thursday’s sessions, the week concluded with a Plant Tour of Benise-Dowling in Decatur, Ga. The Decatur facility is one of three Benise-Dowling sites in Georgia and is a high volume production facility. They showed their fully automated conveyor system with two automatic powder booths, 5-stage pretreatment, color change and reclaim capabilities. The system runs at an average speed of 16 fpm.