Newsletter Masthead
December 2008

Manufacturing (Business) Survival - Part 3

Let's go thru the checklist before we get to the new items. 

1 - You have solidified relationships with your largest customers.  
2 - You have strengthened your team by getting rid of dead weight players, marginal players and maybe adding some "A" players
3 - You have strengthened your cash position by getting rid of slow moving inventory, increased collections for current accounts and are looking at your top 20 expenses for ways to cut costs.
4 - Current Customers - you've trying to sell them more
5 - New Customers - going after new customers
6 - Work Processes - you have documented your current sales and operation work processes and are implementing ways to use Lean concepts while becoming more efficient
Now that you've done all of these items, it is time to bring in some consultants.  Don't worry, you even know some of these "consultants".
  1. Talk to your accountant.  Yes, your accountant knows your business and have them try to assist you in ways of cutting costs.
  2. Talk to your banker.  Your bank knows your business and may have some programs to help your cash flow like factoring, where you can receive cash for your receivables immediately and they will collect from your customers.
  3. Talk to some of your friends who own companies to see what steps they are taking.
  4. If you are in manufacturing, talk to a local Manufacturing Extension Program (MEP) Center.  These are centers paid for with tax dollars to help manufacturers create jobs.  In the local Cincinnati area, call Bruce Vaillancourt (800-345-4482) else visit for a center near you.
  5. If you're not a manufacturer, consider some business coaches.
      • Action International - Nicolas Kontras (513.792.2936) in the Cincinnati area, else go to to locate a coach near you.
      • Focal Point - Tom Breitenbach (513.234.0459) in the Cincinnati area, else go to  to locate a coach near you.
      • E-myth Coaching -  (800-221-0266)
  6. Last, see if you can reduce your telecom expenses using telecom consultants like Sean Fox (513.683.8881) with Schooley Mitchell who negotiates best rates with your existing suppliers based on their database of best rates and only gets paid if they can save you money.

Ben Moore
Agent Technologies, Inc.

The Consumer's Workshop: the future of American manufacturing
The Consumer's Workshop: The Future of American Manufacturing is a hand book on how to setup the systems within your company and create the workforce you need to be successful now and in the future.  Written by authors that have worked at some of America's largest manufacturers, founded their own manufacturing organizations and helped numerous small manufacturers grow.
The Consumer's Workshop: The Future of American Manufacturing is a must read for today's business leaders.  It is insightful and provocative in its approach to where US manufacturing has been, how manufacturing got into the troubles it faces today and what we need to do to become the standard for world class once again.  If we want to know how to regain that competitive edge once again, the roadmap is certainly the pages of The Consumer Workshop.

-- Bruce Vaillancourt,Director, NIST MEP Program, TechSolve, Inc.

Book The Consumer's Workshop is an extremely timely review of how manufacturing strategy developed in the past
and how it will change in the future. The author team clearly demonstrates that companies have to change -- and provide plenty of advise how such a change should take place."
-- Frank Piller, PhD, International Manufacturing Consultant

As the authors make clear, eventually American manufacturing will become the workshop for direct production of consumer's own designs -- or it will be no more. Begin that path by following the steps outlined here."
-- B. Joseph Pine II, author, Mass Customization: The New Frontier in Business Competition

Investment: $12.99

In This Issue
Manufacturing Survival - Part 3
xRP: Free 30 Day Trial
Manufacturing Statistics December 2008
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Manufacturing Statistics 
1) Manufacturing Output increased 0.6%in October 2008 with durable goods down 1.8% and nondurable industries
rose 3.1%. 
Source: Federal Reserve Board
2) Manufacturing Employment fell by 85,000 jobs in November 2008.  
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
3) Manufacturing Trade Deficit in October 2008 decreased $0.3 billion, or 0.4%, to $69.8 billion.   Sources: Census Bureau, Bureau of Economic Analysis
4)Manufacturers' New Orders in October 2008 decreased $21.9 billion, or 5.1%, to $407.4 billion.      Source:Census Bureau
5) Manufacturers' Inventories decreased $3.2 billion, or 0.6 %, to $555.1 billion. Source: Census Bureau
Agent Technologies, Inc.
Phone:  513-942-9444
Fax:  513-942-9446
Founded in 1995, Agent Technologies, Inc. provides e-Commerce Solutions, Business Reporting Solutions, e-Business Strategy Development and Agent Based Systems. We specialize in comprehensive eCommerce 4 Manufacturing (sm) Solutions through our manufacturing consultants and software applications. Try xRP - our online business productivity tool for CRM/ERP.  FREE 30 Day Trial!
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