If you are like me, you’re probably getting sick of reading and listening to negative stories about corporate America. Even hearing those two words together can be a turnoff.
Well, the other day I was with a client who shared a very positive story.
In his industry, there’s a growing shortage of independent installers for their product — and, you guessed it, installers are very critical if the manufacturer and the distributor are going to be successful. A huge problem is that fewer workers are entering this field, since it’s so physically taxing, and most installers burn out at a relatively young age.
My client shared how the manufacturer has responded to these concerns by developing a new product that’s less complex and easier to install. Since its introduction, the new product has resulted in a 50 percent increase in productivity. To the customer, the changes have no affect whatsoever on the look, functionality, or pricing of the product. Environmentally sensitive customers, meanwhile, have been happy to discover the new product is manufactured from fully recyclable materials.
To my client’s surprise — and mine, too — the manufacturer’s representative, who is promoting this product, says, “We recommend the installers continue to charge the same price to install the product.” As a result, younger, stronger installers are able to increase their income by 50 percent, while older, experienced installers can keep earning the same income with significantly less wear and tear on their bodies.
Wow, I just got re-recruited — here’s a business that truly cares about its workers.
I hear and read a lot of similar stories indicating there’s a shortage of skilled, manual laborers. Are you in one of those industries? Is there an innovation in your industry that would be customer-neutral, but would improve your workers’ lives?