By Eric Lanke
I hope everyone saw the recent post from NFPA Board Chair Bill Gorski about the outcomes of the recent NFPA Board of Directors meeting in Milwaukee. (if not, go here). One thing Bill didn’t talk about was the fact that, as part of its meeting, the Board visited and got a tour of NFPA’s new headquarters office in Milwaukee. They were here not just for a tour and a meet-and-greet with NFPA staff, we actually crammed everyone into our conference room and conducted a discussion about trends we’re seeing in the fluid power marketplace.
Amongst our own members, we’re seeing increasing diversity about how our member companies define themselves. Some are component manufacturers, some are fluid power solution providers, and a growing number are multiple technology solution providers. Additionally, some remain focused on fluid power here in North America, while others are focusing on motion control across an increasingly global footprint. Representing all those interests really speaks to the need to keep pursuing our inclusiveness agenda.
In terms of fluid power’s customers—we see them as increasingly sophisticated and demanding, ever more reliant on their suppliers to solve their engineering challenges, and seeking to make more efficient, more productive, more reliable, more compact, and more attractive machines. In response to these demands, our members are increasingly focused on their capacity for innovation. We see that they want to hire the top talent, stay networked, continue educating themselves, invest in R&D, keep abreast of technology, and increase their creativity, agility and responsiveness. And NFPA’s work on our technology and workforce agendas is helping our members do exactly that.
It was a great discussion, which really helped lay the groundwork for the outcomes Bill talked about in his post.
Although I forgot to take a photo of the Board while they were here, I did get an informal shot of everyone at dinner that night, where both Board and staff members continued discussions in a much more relaxed environment. (For the Milwaukee natives out there, yes, that’s the upper level of Maxie’s Southern Comfort.)
The NFPA office is open to all our members—in and out of Milwaukee. We’re located at 6737 West Washington Street, Suite 2350, Milwaukee, WI. If you’re in town and would like to stop by and see the place, or meet our staff, just let me know.
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