Managerial best practices, resin market updates, social media business strategies, financing tips, merger and acquisition trends, innovation approaches, recycling insights, economic projections, and hiring/ talent retention/training tactics are all on the agenda for the annual Plastics News Executive Forum late next month in Florida.
The 2012 forum, taking place Jan. 29-Feb. 1 in Tampa, also is where the publication will crown its latest Processor of the Year and honor the companies that will earn PN's Excellence Awards for customer relations, employee relations, and industry/public service.
Some two dozen presenters will share their knowledge on all the above topics and more. Here are just a few select speakers and topics:
* Wisconsin processor Bemis Manufacturing Co.'s Gary Vande Berg and Jonathan Bemis will explain how their firm developed and implemented a new “playbook management” information technology system.
The system, they said, has boosted productivity and improved transparency with customers.
* John Manuck, president and CEO of color and additive concentrates producer Techmer PM LLC, will share what he has learned about managing a growing organization through change and globalization.
* Nick Vafiadis, a business director with Chemical Markets Associates Inc., will discuss polyolefin resin prospects and how shale gas development is likely to impact upstream PE users.
* Paul Moyer, vice president and general manager of plastics for Styron LLC, will assess the future for the key styrenic, polycarbonate and specialty resin markets.
* A pair of directors from AlixPartners LLP will unveil new research that dissects why so many firms fall short of their lean-manufacturing goals, and will suggest what can be done about it.
* Innovation also will be a major focus, from both the product design/development and manufacturing process perspectives.
Executives from 3M Co., Blackwell Plastics Inc., Dow Corning Corp. and Eastman Chemical Co. will form a panel to discuss tactics for streamlining co-innovation with partners.
MGS Mfg. Group Marketing Director John Berg, meanwhile, will team with Sigma Plastics Services President Christof Heisser on a case study to show how process simulation can benefit an entire injection molding operation.
* Top executives of this year's three Processor of the Year finalist companies — which will be revealed in a story in the Jan. 9 issue of Plastics News — will share their advice on best practiced during a conference-closing panel Feb. 1.
The full list of presenters and topics can be found at www.plas ticsnews.com/forum 2012.