Let's start with a simple truth: If you are involved in low skill labor, a robot will probably replace you.

There should be no tiptoeing around this. It’s a reality of business today: Unskilled, repetitive labor – whether it happens in a factory, a warehouse, an office or even a newsroom – is on the way out. And so are its workers.

"Automation is driving technological unemployment," writes Colin Lewis, rather bleakly, in his latest post on RobotEnomics. "Jobs are being obliterated."

But, he notes, that's no reason to panic. The sky is not falling, the industry is not crashing and all hope is not lost.

"Our research shows 76 companies that implemented industrial or factory / warehouse robots actually increased the number of employees by 294,000 over the last three years," he writes. And furthermore, he adds, "It is highly probable over a million new jobs will be created in the robotics sectors in the coming five years."

"Automation is driving technological unemployment... Jobs are being obliterated."

—Colin Lewis, RobotEnomics

This little piece of irony is, or at least should be, at the very center of our manufacturing discussions today. It remains one of the most confused and confusing points of our so-called American manufacturing renaissance  and it's time to settle it.

In all our talk about reshoring and rebuilding American manufacturing, there is a faulty assumption that the same jobs lost to the recession and to China will return – that we will be restarting the same factories in the same condition, following the same old practices as before. But that is simply not the case.

Manufacturing in America today requires new methods, new practices and new technologies. Our manufacturing renaissance isn't being built with sweat and effort; it's being built with ingenious robots, smart machines and industrial-minded, skilled workers.

If we ignore that change, if we live in fear of the robot uprising or rely too heavily on the practices of the past, the whole renaissance could pass us by.

In order to succeed on that front, manufacturers – everyone from labor to executive leadership – need to embrace the future and all of the job cuts it entails.

Because, as Lewis notes, job-killing robots might actually be the best tool we have for adding jobs.

If all of this is true, then the only question that really matters is what kind of jobs are these new tools actually creating? And also, for whom?

Kevin Ambrose, CEO of warehouse technology provider, Wynright, believes he has an answer.