Podcast: Why entering contests is good for plant morale and productivity

Podcast: Why entering contests is good for plant morale and productivity

Feb. 14, 2024
In this episode of Great Question: A Manufacturing Podcast, IndustryWeek Best Plants Award winners and judges share their thoughts on the benefits of entering contests, aside from bragging rights. 

Jill Jusko is executive editor for IndustryWeek and coordinates the brand’s Best Plants Awards Program, which annually salutes the leading manufacturing facilities in North America. Rick Bohan is the principal and CEO of Chagrin River Consulting. He is a frequent IW Best Plants Award judge, as well as authoring several articles about why contests matter. Brandon Davis is the vice president of Components at Dexter Axle Corp and is a former winner of the Best Plants Awards. The three industry professionals recently spoke with IndustryWeek editor in chief Robert Schoenberger about contests and how to use them to improve operations.

Click here to enter your manufacturing plant in the 2024 IndustryWeek Best Plants Awards competition

Below is an excerpt from the podcast:

IW: So we talk about contests mainly for bragging rights, but there's more to it than that. Rick, about a year or so ago, you wrote two pieces for us here at IndustryWeek on the value of contests and what you get out of them. Can you talk a little bit about some of the actual concrete benefits you get from participating in something like this?

RB: Sure. I wrote that because sometimes, in the past, I've had clients that I talked to about, for instance, going back to the Malcolm Baldrige Quality Award, and sometimes there was a reluctance to be seen as interested in awards. And so we're responding to that. What I would tell those folks, and tell folks now, if I’ve got somebody, a friend, that's trying to get interested, just filling out the application itself is very beneficial. Just filling out the application will teach you a lot about your own organization, the strengths, the things that you're doing well in the organization vis-à-vis continual improvement, and some of the things that perhaps you've overlooked or haven't developed fully. So just that alone, filling out the application, provides benefits.

About the Author

Robert Schoenberger

Robert Schoenberger has been writing about manufacturing technology in one form or another since the late 1990s. He began his career in newspapers in South Texas and has worked for The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi; The Courier-Journal in Louisville, Kentucky; and The Plain Dealer in Cleveland where he spent more than six years as the automotive reporter. In 2013, he launched Today's Motor Vehicles, a magazine focusing on design and manufacturing topics within the automotive and commercial truck worlds. He joined IndustryWeek in late 2021.

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