Lean Support Small Groups

This group is composed of KCMN members who are looking for a way to interact with others who are utilizing Lean principles to improve their operations. The member group of manufacturers agrees to support each other’s efforts to make improvements along their Lean journey.

The essence of the group is as follows:

  • The group meets quarterly at a member company for 2.5 to 3 hours.
  • The host company sends out 3 dates to vote and the majority wins.
  •  Hosting includes a presentation and tour of the area of focus as part of the meeting.
  • The hosting company should determine in advance of the meeting what specific area of Lean they would like to focus on as part of their presentation and tour so that participants can come prepared to discuss and offer suggestions.
  • Participants can then offer suggestions and feedback to the host following the tour and presentation.
  • Joining the group means you have to be willing to host the group at least once every 2 years, and be open to both an honest assessment of areas for improvement, and interested in getting both positive and negative feedback.
  • Maximum benefit is attained when host company management at a level to effect change is in attendance during the feedback session.
  • Any new member must be approved by all members to avoid conflict of interest.

In addition to the regular KCMN monthly meetings, this group is an added benefit to KCMN members, as a way to help get more interaction between member companies, and for members to provide support and growth in their efforts to increase efficiencies. This group is limited in size, and new members are subject to current member approval.

Should this be of interest to you, or someone else in your company, please send their contact information to Donna Gordon at donna@kcmn.org, or 816-304-7958.

Thanks to all who made our Networking Event a Success!

One hundred and forty people attended our joint networking event at the Dark Horse Distillery in Lenexa.  We couldn’t have pulled this off without the support of our participating organizations:

APICS
The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME)
Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE)
American Society for Quality (ASQ)

Also a great big thanks to our sponsors!
Premier Drink Sponsor: Spencer Fane
Supporting sponsors:  MWV, Kelly Services, Barr-Thorpe Electric and A&E Custom Manufacturing

Also thanks to Brian McCarthy (IIE), Deneen Slack (SME) and Andy Zawisza (APICS/KCMN) for giving up most of their evening to help with check-ins, and for all who led our networking discussions!

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Wrap up your Summer with a Great Networking Event!

WE ARE SOLD OUT!  THANKS EVERYONE FOR THE GREAT RESPONSE!

OPEN TO KCMN, SME, APICS, IIE & ASQ MEMBERS & INVITED GUESTS

Following our sold out successful event last summer, we are making this year’s summer networking event even bigger and better!

Join us at our members-only event:logo merge

Dark Horse Distillery

11740 West 86th Terrace, Lenexa, KS

August 26, 2014  4-7 PM

Located just west of I-35 off of 87th Street in Lenexa, the Dark Horse Distillery is a family owned and operated distillery launched in 2010 with a complete unique event space.

Admission includes your choice of beverages, including Dark Horse Rider Vodka, Dark Horse Long Shot White Whiskey, well spirits, beer, wine and soda, as well as great food, plus an opportunity to network with fellow manufacturers- all for only $20.

  • Event limited to the first 150 people who sign up
  • Appetizers,  sandwiches and a special dessert by Dean & Deluca
  • Cost is $20 per person
  • Advance registration is required, (online or donna@kcmn.org) No walk-ins will be accepted at the door
  • Pay online  or  cash or check at the door – due to 5 organizations involved, no invoicing
  • Proceeds from the event benefit the SME and IIE Scholarship funds

Your choice of beverages, thanks to our Premier sponsor:

 SFBB_Logo_Nobox 2

At Spencer Fane, we take pride in our ability to work in partnership with our clients to achieve their goals. Our client engagement philosophy highlights three critical steps: We identify achievable goals. We work to find the best strategy for achieving those goals. We implement powerful legal strategy in a skillful, aggressive and cost-effective manner. We believe our success is measured by our results. Spencer Fane has a wealth of experience representing regional, national, and international manufacturing companies. We have guided our clients through the complex legal issues that arise including contracts, employment issues, asset protection, and environmental requirements.

Register today by CLICKING HERE  or contact Donna  816-304-7958  donna@kcmn.org

Supporting Sponsors   AE_Logo2 CUSTOM

official_kelly_logoMWV

 

 BThorp_2_SM

 

Who we are:

The Kansas City Manufacturing Network (KCMN) was established in 1993 as the central resource for manufacturing company managers and owners who are working to grow and improve their businesses. KCMN’s educational and networking opportunities create opportunities for manufacturers to learn through real world experiences such as plant tours, presentations by local subject matter experts, and panel discussions that share lessons learned from fellow manufacturing professionals.

The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) is the premier source for manufacturing knowledge, education and networking. Through its many programs, events, magazines, publications and online training division, Tooling U, SME connects manufacturing practitioners to each other, to the latest technologies and to the most up-to-date manufacturing processes. SME has members around the world and is supported by a network of chapters and technical communities.

Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE) is the world’s largest professional society dedicated solely to the support of the industrial engineering profession and individuals involved with improving quality and productivity. Founded in 1948, IIE is an international, nonprofit association that provides leadership for the application, education, training, research, and development of industrial engineering.  In addition to continuing education opportunities, we provide exposure to an excellent network of fellow Industrial Engineers in manufacturing, distribution, service, consulting, and education.

American Society for Quality (ASQ) is a global community of people passionate about quality, who use the tools, their ideas and expertise to make our world work better. ASQ: The Global Voice of Quality, was founded in 1946 and has over 78,000 members worldwide.  We offer technologies, concepts, training, solutions, and an active network of quality practitioners, leaders, and innovators second to none.

APICS is the leading professional association for supply chain and operations management and the premier provider of research, education and certification programs that elevate end-to-end supply chain excellence, innovation and resilience. APICS Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) and APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) designations set the industry standard. With over 37,000 members and more than 250 international partners, APICS is transforming the way people do business, drive growth and reach global customers.

 

 

Wrap up your summer by making some new connections!

WE ARE SOLD OUT – THANK YOU EVERYONE FOR THE GREAT RESPONSE!

OPEN TO KCMN, SME, IIE & ASQ AND THEIR INVITED MANUFACTURING COMPANY GUESTS

Following our sold out successful event last summer, we are making this year’s summer networking event even bigger and better. Join:

Kansas City Manufacturing Network,

The Society of Manufacturing Engineers,

Institute of Industrial Engineers, and

American Society for Quality

at our members-only event at the Dark Horse Distillery in Lenexa, KS from 4-7 PM on August 20, 2013.

Located just west of I-35 off of 87th Street in Lenexa, the Dark Horse Distillery is a family owned and operated distillery launched in 2010 with a complete unique event space.

Admission includes your choice of beverages, including Dark Horse Rider Vodka, Dark Horse Long Shot White Whiskey, well spirits, beer, wine and soda, complements of our drink sponsor, Spencer Fane Britt & Browne LLP. We will also have sandwiches and appetizers catered by Dean & Delucca.  Learn more about four great organizations who provide resources and support to the area’s manufacturing community, and participate in discussions to help you get to know your fellow manufacturers – all for only $20.

Attendees must pay online or by cash or check at the door.  Due to multiple organizations participating, there will be no invoicing.  Sign up today by clicking here!

Attendance is open to members only of the 4 participating organizations and invited manufacturing company guests, and will be limited to the first 100 to sign up.  If we are able to secure additional sponsors, proceeds from the event will benefit SME and IIE Scholarship funds.  Contact Brian Crawley from SME for more details if you’d like to help sponsor the event.

Your choice of beverages, thanks to our sponsors:

SFBB_Logo_Nobox 2

At Spencer Fane, we take pride in our ability to work in partnership with our clients to achieve their goals. Our client engagement philosophy highlights three critical steps: We identify achievable goals. We work to find the best strategy for achieving those goals. We implement powerful legal strategy in a skillful, aggressive and cost-effective manner. We believe our success is measured by our results. Spencer Fane has a wealth of experience representing regional, national, and international manufacturing companies. We have guided our clients through the complex legal issues that arise including contracts, employment issues, asset protection, and environmental requirements.

Thanks to our additional supporting event sponsors:

Bank of Kansas City Logo marksnelson logo

 

 

 

Who we are:

The Kansas City Manufacturing Network (KCMN) was established in 1993 as the central resource for manufacturing company managers and owners who are working to grow and improve their businesses. KCMN’s educational and networking opportunities create opportunities for manufacturers to learn through real world experiences such as plant tours, presentations by local subject matter experts, and panel discussions that share lessons learned from fellow manufacturing professionals.

The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) is the premier source for manufacturing knowledge, education and networking. Through its many programs, events, magazines, publications and online training division, Tooling U, SME connects manufacturing practitioners to each other, to the latest technologies and to the most up-to-date manufacturing processes. SME has members around the world and is supported by a network of chapters and technical communities. A 501(c)3 organization, SME is a leader in manufacturing workforce development issues, working with industry, academic and government partners to support the current and future skilled workforce.

Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE) is the world’s largest professional society dedicated solely to the support of the industrial engineering profession and individuals involved with improving quality and productivity. Founded in 1948, IIE is an international, nonprofit association that provides leadership for the application, education, training, research, and development of industrial engineering.  Our members can be found in manufacturing, distribution, service, consulting, education, and even retirement!  In addition to continuing education opportunities, we provide exposure to an excellent network of fellow Industrial Engineers.

American Society for Quality (ASQ) is a global community of people passionate about quality, who use the tools, their ideas and expertise to make our world work better. ASQ: The Global Voice of Quality, was founded in 1946 and has over 78,000 members worldwide.  We offer technologies, concepts, training, solutions, and an active network of quality practitioners, leaders, and innovators second to none.

 

Education and Training for Manufacturing Success

KCMN’s January 2012 Education Forum featured four higher education institutions, and for manufacturing companies, who discussed their approach on building a 21st century manufacturing team.

The four presenting schools Johnson County Community College, Kansas City Kansas Community College, Metropolitan Community College – Business & Technology, and Pittsburg State University, all emphasized their desire to be responsive to the needs of the region’s manufacturers.  For example, Pittsburg State utilizes an industry review board to look at ways to improve the curriculum and respond to changes in the marketplace.  KCK Community College, JCCC and MCC can tailor customized training programs for even small employee groups.  The community colleges emphasized that a program of study could be developed outside of a traditional degree program, which traditionally has more appeal to a working adult with additional responsibilities.   For employees looking to take their careers to the next level, Pittsburg State has developed a program to work with students who have earned a technical associates degree to earn a Bachelor’s degree that includes both technical and managerial coursework.

One area of discussion was improving front line supervisory skills.  Torotel was very pleased that their partnership with JCCC greatly improved all measures of behavior and leadership skills of their supervisory people, as measured by a pre and post training employee survey.  As a result of better supervisory behavioral and leadership skills – communication, problem solving, delegate, interpersonal skills, feedback, change, authority, and accountability the percentage also improved in 25% and better in five months.  This was accomplished despite a limited budget for training.

Cost of training programs is always a concern in an era of tight budgets. JCCC works with KS Workforce Partnership and can help you determine if training funds from the state are available.  The school also can serve in partnership with MCC when there is a cross state need identified, and they are working towards more cooperation.  KCK Community College’s Rich Piper will identify the right institution for your needs, and will recommend another institution if the in-state tuition makes the program too expensive.  Pittsburg State offers in-state tuition to MO residents in counties in the Metro KC area.

An extended discussion focused on the needs to increase the worker pipeline.  Ben Boone of ATK Small Caliber Systems says that going through the process of Lean increases stress on the labor force, and increased skills attainment by the workforce is critical to making the effort successful.  Forty percent or more of skilled workers are eligible or approaching eligibility for retirement.  Rich Piper noted the declining state of shop classes and other hands on programs at the high school level.  In schools without these kinds of outlets, there is a much higher rate of drop-outs, especially among boys. Tom Goodpasture of Pride Manufacturing stated that getting involved in education and the development of the next generation of workers is critical as well.  He noted that ‘If you are not at the table, you are likely to end up on the menu”

All of the manufacturing company panelists agreed that having a plan for both current and future workers was important.  As Dr. John Iley of Pittsburg State noted, classroom work can only cover so much.  Students also need co-op and internship opportunities to apply what they are learning.

Jason Grove with Dimensional Innovations has hired and continues to hire Pittsburg State interns and grads, and has been very happy with the results.  Developing and running an intern program is challenging, but it also carries many rewards, including new perspectives on the business and new enthusiasm from the younger workers. He stressed the importance of forming a two-way relationship with your educational partner. When both sides benefit, the outcomes are greatly improved.

Tom Goodpasture with Pride Manufacturing has had an active training program in his facility in order to respond to growing demand for skilled workers.  It is vital to cross train employees, and to utilize training as way to keep workers engaged. Tom also strongly recommended involvement in both the national and local dialog.  Elected leaders need to understand the concerns of industry, and appreciate the feedback.

Ben Boone emphasized that it is critical to capture the knowledge of older workers, and a key way to do this is by training them to capture their processes.  For example, MCC offers a course in digital literacy where older workers can learn to use excel and other technology to help document their work.   The manufacturing panelists strongly emphasized talking up education to your workers, and making sure that the culture values those who continue to improve their skills.

All of the speakers emphasized that the worker shortage is only going to get worse.  It is important to do what you can to encourage both improved skill sets/cross training of current workers, but also finding ways to advocate for earlier involvement, at the high school and even junior high level.  As a nation, we have avoided tracking kids into particular areas, but a range of skill sets is being ignored at the peril of our future competitiveness in manufacturing in the US.   If all of the jobs that went to China returned to the US, we would not have the workforce to fill them.

Social Media – What Can It Do For Me?

It’s nearly impossible to pick up a business publication and not see a story about social media and its growing prevalence with your customers and your employees, and your kids!  January’s meeting will explore the help behind the hype.  Can social media bring value to a manufacturer who has an overloaded plate already?  Join our 3 speakers in learning about and discussing the value of social media in a manufacturing environment.

  • Which forms of social media are best for your industry?
  • How local manufacturers are using social media today
  • Best practices for utilizing social media in your company
  • Cautions to consider
  • How to evaluate your efforts and make it work for you

Panelists

Doug Richards, Managing Partner, RH & Associates Social Media –The Evolving Role of New Media

Doug will share his experience of working with companies to develop their social media strategies over the past 5 years.  He will discuss forms of social media, suggest best practices for utilizing social media in a manufacturing environment, share strategies for success and take a look at the future of social media.

Chris Vering, Executive Vice President-COO, CFO, Knit Rite, Inc  How Social Media Is Driving Customer Demand For Niche Medical Products

Chris will provide information on how social media is helping to drive sales of Knit-Rite’s niche medical products into the general retail marketplace.  While using daily actively managed social media, Knit-Rite brands become even more personal and further evolve the company’s image as an innovator that provides solutions to those in need..

Lisa Sizemore, Founder/Owner Hit Resultz – How Torotel Products Implemented Social Business

Lisa will share Torotel Products’ story how they have incorporated Social Media/Social Business into their manufacturing business. She will include the surprises and successes they have discovered implementing this new way of thinking about and conducting business.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011
7:30-9:00 a.m.
Hilton Garden
501 Minnesota, Kansas City, Kansas

Cost is $15 for members and $25 for guests. Guests may attend 2 meetings before having to join as a member.  Sign up by January 7 by clicking here , or contact Donna Gordon.

Our founding sponsors, Mid America Manufacturing and Technology Center (MAMTC) and Missouri Enterprise, will be our sponsors for this event. The event is open to area manufacturers and their suppliers. We invite you to join with us to make KCMN the premier resource for manufacturers.
Due to our need to cover the event costs, no shows will be billed. Cancellations will be accepted no later than 3 business days prior to an event. Cancellations of reservations paid by credit card will be assessed a $10 processing fee by the registration service, or contact us for event credit for a future event. You may register as a guest for up to 2 events before membership is required. For questions or comments, please contact Donna Gordon.

About our Speakers:
Doug Richards – Managing Partner, RH & Associates
As managing partner of RH & Associates, Doug works as an author, professional speaker and futurist. Doug has a diverse professional history – author, chef, teacher, coach, entrepreneur and multimedia developer are just some of the roles Doug has taken in his career path. Doug is a self-described ‘second generation nerd’ who views technology not as a necessary evil but rather a tool for semantic change. In 2004, he left his role in online development for the Sprint University of Excellence, and spent five years researching social media and counseling launch teams for start up in sales and process improvement. He applied his experience to his role today at RH & Associates, which specializes in utilizing social business technology to help their clients create time and mobility. His next book, Free for All is due for release in early spring 2011.

Lisa Sizemore – Founder/Owner Hit Resultz and Social Business Champion for Torotel Products

Lisa is the founder and owner of local consulting company, Hit Resultz. She is an experienced business owner, speaker, and facilitator on strategic internet strategy, strategic business and life planning, social media and team dynamics. Torotel Products, www.torotelproducts.com which began in 1956, is now a recognized leader in the design and manufacturing of more than 32,000 custom assemblies and magnetic components for defense/aerospace, commercial and alternative energy industries using both client “recipes” and black box design parameters. They’ve recently doubled their manufacturing capacity and are excited about the future.

Chris Vering – Executive Vice President-COO, CFO, Knit Rite, Inc.

Knit-Rite, Inc. (www.knitrite.com) is a leading designer, marketer, and manufacturer of innovative textiles for both consumer and medical markets including prosthetics, orthotics, vascular support and footcare. Founded in 1923, Knit-Rite remains committed to the continued research and development and manufacturing of products that deliver healthy benefits for a better quality of life. Chris Vering has been with Knit-Rite since 1999, with operational oversight for Knit-Rite’s plants in Kansas City and North Carolina, along with all finance functions and Knit-Rite’s direct to consumer marketing.

Navigating 2011: View of the Future and Resources to Help

The Outlook for the US Economy – Jon Willis
Jon Willis will give a presentation on the state of the U.S. economy and discuss the economic outlook for 2011. In the presentation, he will discuss economic factors related specifically to manufacturers. He will also discuss current issues affecting the labor market.

Expanding your Business Through Exporting – Regina Heise
Are you looking for ways to grow and increase revenue? Are you looking to foreign markets for the first time or interested in expanding to new international markets? Now is the perfect time to look at exporting, but do you know how to navigate the export process, look for new markets, identify customers, and avoid common pitfalls?

About the speakers
Jon Willis Assistant Vice President and Economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City
Jon joined the Economic Research Department in September 2000. A native of Iowa, Jon received a B.A. degree in economics from Grinnell College in 1993 and a Ph.D. degree in economics from Boston University in 2001. Jon conducts research on labor market dynamics over the business cycle and the relationship between the price-setting behavior of firms and inflation dynamics. In addition to working at the Bank, he has served as a visiting assistant professor at the University of Texas at Austin.

Regina Heise, Director, U.S. Commercial Service-Kansas City
Regina Heise has been the Director of the U.S. Commercial Service-Kansas City office since October 2005. In this capacity, she works daily with U.S. companies to pursue international sales opportunities and coordinates efforts with the larger international trade community to bring value-added programming to area businesses. An agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Commercial Service is the main trade promotion arm of the U.S. Government. The Kansas City office works with companies in Northwestern Missouri and Eastern Kansas. Regina has been with the Department of Commerce since 1996, previously serving in Washington, D.C. as the Deputy Director of the Trade Information Center

Tuesday, October 12, 2010 7:30-9:00 am
Overland Park Marriot
10800 Metcalf, Overland Park, KS (435 & Metcalf)

Cost is $15 for members and $25 for guests. Guests may attend two meetings before having to join as a member. Sign up today by clicking HERE or contact Donna Gordon.

Our founding sponsors, Mid America Manufacturing and Technology Center (MAMTC) and Missouri Enterprise, will be our sponsors for this event. The event is open to area manufacturers and their suppliers. We invite you to join with us to make KCMN the premier resource for manufacturers.