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Book Shelf: Keeping Your Business in the USA: Profit Globally While Operating Locally

March 13, 2012
Book describes how three U.S. manufacturers have succeeded in the global economy while keeping their production based in the United States.

This thin volume largely eschews the politics of offshoring and instead focuses squarely on how three U.S. manufacturers -- one small (Hamilton Caster), one mid-size (The Dupps Co.) and one large (Midmark Corp.) -- have succeeded in the global economy while keeping their production based in the United States.

The three companies are all family-owned, and while the products they manufacture are very different (casters, rendering equipment, medical equipment), they all share a common interest in remaining relevant and competitive as a U.S.-based manufacturer.

Each of the book's three main chapters offers a case study of how these companies do what they do, and several recurring themes emerge from their corporate histories: lean cultures; "voice-of-the-customer" initiatives; focus on team building; product innovation; and a willingness to adapt to changes in the marketplace by adding new offerings while selling off unprofitable product lines.

Underlying all of the company histories is a common trait: an insistence on metrics and rigorous self-assessment. To that end, the book closes with a "self-analysis" checklist designed to help manufacturing executives weigh exactly how well (or poorly) they are doing in seven key areas: leadership; financial management; strategy deployment; continuous improvement; listen, learn, understand and act; employee programs; and customer satisfaction.

By Tim Hutzel and Paul Piechota
CRC Press, 2012, 135 pages, $39.95

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