Archive for November 12th, 2013

Employers should focus on finding workers with the right kinds of cognitive skills instead of placing a heavy emphasis on recruiting talent with a list of secondary degrees, suggests Michael Smith, COO of Innovate+Educate, a nonprofit industry-led organization. He reflected on his organization’s efforts to help close the skills gap last week at the inaugural Close It Summit in Washington.
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Labor union

Data shows that organized labor in the manufacturing industry has been on the decline for years. Yet questions remain as to why. Is it because unions are outdated and irrelevant to today’s business environment? Or is it the result of companies threatening and intimidating workers?  Read more


The manufacturing sector has emerged from the recent economic crisis stronger in many ways, consulting firm Accenture contends in a report on the strategies of successful companies. But it is by no means exempt from challenges.  Read more


energyefficientSeveral states, including California, Mississippi, and Illinois have stepped up their efforts to become more energy efficient, according to the seventh annual edition of the State Energy Efficiency Scorecard released by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE). The latest report shows several states boosting their rankings as a result of increased committments and new programs dedicated to improving energy performance across many private and public sectors.

The State Scorecard shows that the top 10 states for energy efficiency are: Massachusetts, California, New York, Oregon, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Maryland, and Illinois. Massachusetts retains the top spot for the third year in a row based on its continued commitment to energy efficiency under its Green Communities Act. In California, requirements for reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions have led it to identify several strategies for smart growth, keeping the state in a top position at No. 2. Connecticut is also closing the gap due to passage of a major energy bill in 2013, and Illinois is making its first appearance in the top 10 this year, reaping the benefits of increased energy savings called for in the state’s energy efficiency resource standard. Read more


As the U.S. manufacturing industry struggles to find fresh talent, retaining and rewarding existing workers becomes increasingly important. While there are many ways to keep staff engaged and happy, one often-neglected method is the performance review process. Read more

the caterpillar way

In The Caterpillar Way: Lessons in Leadership, Growth, and Shareholder Value, Craig Bouchard and James Koch look at how the company found the drive to succeed and turned around multi-million-dollar losses into a winning global business strategy.  Read more

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