We all get in a rut. And overall, the plastics industry is faring well right now. Plus, you are a major buyer, and everybody you need to know comes by your shop regularly to tell you about all the great things their products offer.
This scenario reeks of a “good enough” situation, which isn't the approach that made the U.S. a manufacturing power. Complacency is the beginning of the end for most any business. It's the day the competition starts to catch up.
As a smart man once told me “You don't know what you don't know,” and when you think that through, an uncomfortable sense may come about you. Think about what a couple of days at NPE 2015 might do for you or your staff.
NPE 2015 presents the best opportunity to ensure you learn what you don't know:
c Plenty of suppliers visit you annually, but what about the ones that don't know you? It's worth your while to see what your suppliers' competition is offering, if only to keep your suppliers honest.
c Are there new technologies or emerging processes that might change your workflow or processes? The system and process is just as important as the equipment and materials. More efficiency and cost-cutting measures are well worth the trip.
c What meeting locales offer you the opportunity to connect with your customer, the brand owner, in a neutral spot? Sometimes it does a lot of good to get you and your customer away from the office, and the brand owners and original equipment manufacturers are coming to NPE in full force this year.
c Do you have all the talent you need? If you do, kudos. However, most of us are looking for talent on a daily basis, and you can expect to meet qualified, as well as young and qualified, talent at NPE 2015 … but only if you are there.
c Is there any chance you will meet a potential new partner or distributor you really hadn't considered while sitting in your office?
c Do you often engage in an unscripted, industry-related conversation about new revenue-generating ideas while on your plant or warehouse floor? Perhaps occasionally, but those conversations are around every corner at NPE 2015 where you will meet other plastics professionals looking to grow.
Face-to-face meetings are invaluable. For individuals seeking to grow themselves, for companies seeking to grow their bottom line, and for investors and others looking to preview new opportunities and reconnect with partners and friends, nothing can replace the spontaneity that occurs when creative and talented people come together. Bring a group of like-minded folks together and anything can happen.
For 18 months, the NPE 2015 marketing theme has been “You Make Great Things, Together We Make Great Things Happen.” The “together” doesn't happen if “you” aren't there.
NPE 2015 will offer the largest exhibit floor in the show's history, and we project attendance to be well above shows of the past decade.
Meet me in Orlando, Fla., and let's make great things happen. I guarantee it'll be worth two or three days out of the office.
Williams is director of trade shows marketing and sales for the Washington-based Society of the Plastics Industry Inc.