Most kids probably won't say that they dream of working as a machinist, salesman, or engineer. Manufacturing is a stereotypically slow moving, gritty industry that does not attract young talent easily. Today's young workers want to work for businesses that tell a story and stand for more than simply turning a profit. My name is Paul Kocsis, and this is how my family's manufacturing company has begun catering to the next generation of young professionals.
I arrived at my family's fluid power company, Kocsis Technologies, two years ago fresh out of college. In the first couple of months, I noticed a trend in many customers that I encountered. The employee demographic could be described as middle-aged men who had worked in fluid power for nearly their whole lives and who were not willing to waiver from the status quo. "Change" seemed to be a curse word in the industry.
Kocsis itself was not immune to the stubbornness that plagued our customers. Our company had sold the same product lines for the past twenty years. We were understaffed, struggled to find talent, and portrayed a negative culture. It was time to breakout the worst word of them all: "Change."