The Big Picture - June/July 2013 - (Page 4)

insight by Gregory Sharpless EDITORIAL Gregory Sharpless Editor-in-Chief Adrienne Palmer Assistant Editor Fire is a Big Deal Earlier this year, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reported on the 23 words that are the oldest words in the human repertoire. The words are (in no particular order): “thou,” “I,” “not,” “that,” “we,” “to give,” “who,” “this,” “what,” “man/male,” “ye,” “old,” “mother,” “to hear,” “hand,” “fire,” “to pull,” “black,” “to flow,” “bark,” “ashes,” “to spit,” and “worm.” So, let’s say you decide this weekend that, instead of cutting your grass, you’re going to transport yourself back in time, perhaps 200,000 years ago or so. If the Academy is correct, you could still have some interesting conversations with your ancestors – as long as you keep to the word list above. And subject matter might be important, too; as a writer on noted, “You can tell that fire was a big deal back in the day.” Now, jump forward in time to the present day and your own company. How do you communicate with your employees? Do you know their most important topics? What’s the modern-day equivalent of “fire” to them? And how are you going about communicating with them on a daily basis – about these most-important subjects as well as others? Let’s face it: For many managers, one of the tasks that comes least natural to them is communicating. We’ve all had managers who fall into one of two very distinct categories: Either they barely communicate with their staffs, or they over-communicate. In the case of the former type of manager, the staff is usually left to translate whatever miniscule information can be grabbed, often piecemeal. For whatever reason, the manager simply doesn’t like sharing information, or perhaps doesn’t feel comfortable with his or her staff (the latter is often evidence of inexperienced managers who might feel threatened by veteran employees). All the staff can eke out about fire, for instance, is its color; but they’re never provided the more critical details: that fire is hot, that it can cook food, that it can burn things down, and so on. When it comes to over-communicating managers, the staff is often provided with so much information that they have to determine how to fi lter out the information that has little or nothing to do with the task at hand. To continue with the fire example, the manager not only tells the staff everything about fire, but also then gives them a history of fire through the ages, with some anecdotal family fire stories thrown in. In both of these extremes, the staff doesn’t ever quite get the information it needs and, as a result, there’s a real possibility that the shop can suffer. Before your next staff meeting, evaluate what type of communicator you are and ask your staff how you can do better at providing them with the information they require. Do so and you’ll be able to put out those fires much more quickly. Laura Mohr Art Director Marty McGhie, Craig Miller, Jared Smith Columnists Rick Bachelder, Kathy Boydstun, Terry Corman, Scott Crosby, Brandon Gabriel, Michael Garcia, Kirk Green, Robert Kissel, Tina McLaughlin, Craig Miller, Carmen Rad, Greg Root, Jared Smith, Mark Taylor Editorial Advisory Board SALES Murray Kasmenn Senior VP/Group Publisher 770/578-2577 Lou Arneberg Business Development Manager East and Midwest US, E Canada 800/654-5169 Ben Stauss Business Development Manager West and South US, W Canada, Europe, Asia 513/263-9363 Linda Volz Production Supervisor Tedd Swormstedt President Steve Duccilli Senior VP of Content Christine Baloga Audience Development Director Kari Freudenberger Director, Online Media Subscription Services/ Copies/Back Issues (847) 763-4938 THE BIG PICTURE (ISSN 1082-9660) is published 9 times annually (Jan/Feb, March, April, May, June/July, August, September, October, Nov/Dec) by ST Media Group International Inc., 11262 Cornell Park Dr., Cincinnati, OH 45242-1812. Telephone: (513) 421-2050, Fax: (513) 362-0317. No charge for subscriptions to qualified individuals. Annual rate for subscriptions to non-qualified individuals in the U.S.A.: $42 USD. Annual rate for subscriptions in Canada: $70 USD (includes GST & postage); all other countries: $92 (Int’l mail) payable in U.S. funds. Printed in the U.S.A. Copyright 2013, by ST Media Group International Inc. All rights reserved. The contents of this publication may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the consent of the publisher. The publisher is not responsible for product claims and representations. Periodicals Postage Paid at Cincinnati, OH and at additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: The Big Picture, P.O. Box 1060, Skokie, IL 60076. Change of address: Send old address label along with new address to The Big Picture, P.O. Box 1060, Skokie, IL 60076. 4 THE BIG PICTURE JUNE/JULY 2013 11262 Cornell Park Drive Cincinnati, OH 45242 tel (513) 421-2050 fax (513) 421-5144

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Big Picture - June/July 2013

The Big Picture - June/July 2013
Up Front
Inside Output
Flatbeds & Hybrids 2013 Report
Establishing a ‘Green’ Identity
Give Your Shop an Edge with Cutters & Routers
Technology Spotlight: ISA Expo

The Big Picture - June/July 2013