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1 DecemberCustomer Spotlight: MDI-co.

mdi-co-thumbnail-pic

At Lyndex-Nikken, we value our customers and their dedication to their business and the manufacturing community as a whole. To show our support, we have launched a new video series called, Lyndex-Nikken’s Customer Spotlight. In this video series, we are highlighting working entrepreneurs and business owners who dedicate their time keeping the manufacturing industry alive and thriving.

This month we have our spotlight on Drew Johnson.  He is the owner of MDI-co, a design and product development company offering prototype and production machining solutions in West Chicago, Illinois.  MDI-co specializes in 3D printing, molding and CNC milling and turning. They primarily service the automotive, consumer electronics, and medical industries.  Watch Drew’s story to see why he started his business and why he chose to invest in our products.

 

30 SeptemberEmployee Spotlight: Meet Belinda

Meet BelindaAt Lyndex-Nikken, we value our employees and their ongoing efforts to provide our customers with the highest level of service. With over 35 years of business, we understand our achievements would not have been possible without our employees’ hard work. Therefore, in this Lyndex-Nikken Employee Spotlight vlog series, we are highlighting our team and their commitment to excellence.

This week we have the spotlight on Belinda.  She is our Inside Sales Representative for the west coast, Mexico and South America.  She brings a lot to our sales department and we are happy to have her with the company.  Watch the video to hear what Belinda thinks about working at Lyndex-Nikken.

5 August2-Ways to Manufacture a Good Working Environment

Being a part of the American workforce means you probably spend most of your time at work. That said, it is important to enjoy your working environment. Some people may think a good work environment is a ping-pong table in the break room or an open bar happy hour every Friday. To some it is, but in reality, it takes much more than that. There are many ways to improve your company culture that do not involve getting a liquor license. To help, here are 2 ways to manufacture a good working environment:

Open Communication

Having open communication between staff and management is extremely important to the culture of any business. The first step of opening the lines of communication is receiving feedback from staff. Some businesses may see receiving feedback from staff as a negative. However, it’s a great opportunity for the company to improve and grow. Besides, who better to give feedback than the people you employ to represent the company? Sharing feedback tells staff their input matters and that improves every working environment.

At Lyndex-Nikken, we adopted a way for our employees to give feedback as well as make suggestions to management. Through Google Forms we created a digital “suggestion box”, where our staff can make suggestions for company improvement while remaining totally anonymous. Since its introduction, we have received feedback and suggestions we have put in implementation. The digital suggestion box has not only increased staff productivity, it has encouraged positive thinking within the company.

Sharing Encouragement

It is important to remember your team. Yes, your staff is there to do a job but it is not hard to introduce random acts of encouragement while maintaining professionalism. Recognizing staff’s birthdays are small steps for the company but big steps for the company culture. There are many ways to share encouragement. Recently, the management team at Lyndex-Nikken reserved a food truck and sponsored lunch for the company.   Actions like this will encourage and motivate your staff to do their best.

30 June2 Steps to Proper Brand Management

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What does your branding say about your business? If you cannot answer that question with certainty, neither will your potential customers. Similar to your reputation as an individual, branding is what people think of when they think of your business. Comparable to the Amazon being known for their 2-day shipping, it is what your business is known for; for better or worse. Over time, your branding will evolve and grow with your business. It is important to make sure to express this evolution to the public. To help, we have listed 2 Steps to Proper Brand Management:

Social-cleaning-300x202Brand Clean-Up

One of the first things you can do to refresh your branding is to eliminate old information. Did you stop carrying older products in lieu of newer product line? Take inventory of all of your platforms including, website, blogs, and social media pages and update the products you sell and services you provide. You can also check to see if there are former employees still listed on your website. Now is the time to purge your brand of all obsolete information.

Revamp WebsiteRevamp Your Website

After cleaning up your platforms, the next step is to concentrate on your website. To your customers, your website is your digital storefront. It is what people see when they decide to do business with you. That said, it’s important to keep the look and functionality of your website updated. You can start by asking yourself, how old is my website? There have been a lot of changes made to how we view websites in the past 5-years. If your website was designed before the introduction of smartphones, it may be time to give it a face lift. Since, the smartphone boom, people view more websites on mobile devices vs. computers. It is important your website is mobile responsive. This is when the website is scaled to fit the size of a mobile device. For more detail on how to check if your website is mobile responsive see our previous article, 2 Keys to STOP Losing Business to Competitors.

16 June2 Tips to Help Your Business Strive on Social Media

Social Media Feature

By now, every business should have their social media profile(s) established.  Even if the business doesn’t post regularly, the profile should be setup.  There is a difference between striving and surviving on social media.  Surviving is when you are struggling to keep up with maintaining your page.  Striving is when you look forward to posting content because you know it will increase your engagement and traffic rate.  To help make social media more enjoyable for you, we are sharing 2 tips to help your business strive on social media:

 

Plan Your Posts

Rule #1 for striving on social media is to post content constantly.  Some businesses see it as a chore to maintain their social media pages because it’s not easy.  However, planning your posts can help take the pressure off.  Developing a posting strategy is the first step.  Choose how many posts you want to share on a daily or weekly basis.  Then plan your content around that number.  Usually, you would share original content but this is social media.  You can also repost shared content from another source.  If remembering to post is an issue, you can use social media management tools like Hootsuite and Buffer to schedule your posts.  These tools will automatically post for you.

 

Know Your Platform

There are a lot of social media platforms out there and they all have their own specific voice.  It’s important to tweak your content based on the specific platform you are on:

Facebook is great for relationship building.  You can promote your brand, original content and speak directly to your customers in a casual manner.  Facebook Advertising allows you to target specific customers to increase sales but if buying ad space on social media isn’t your thing, skip it and focus on building a loyal following organically.

Twitter is great for establishing a dialog with your customers.  This platform allows you to share your thoughts and create a voice for your brand.  You can also respond to people who want to talk to you directly.  This is great for building rapport.

Instagram is great for sharing visual content.  If you have great looking photographs of your products and/or demonstration videos, this is the platform for you.  Unlike Twitter, Instagram is not the platform for holding a conversation.  This particular platform is ideal for making visual statements.  So, if your brand has something to say, create a meme and share.

 

3 June2-Ways Tech Manufacturing Startups have Changed

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Technology is ever changing. So much you can barely keep up. It seems like as soon as you get the latest laptop or camera, it’s already outdated. This is great for the tech manufacturing sector. From touch screens to voice control, Innovation keeps that industry thriving. If you have a desire to jump into the tech manufacturing business and you’ve seen the 4-movies (and counting) about how Steve Jobs started Apple, you may be thinking this could be your story. However, starting a tech manufacturing business isn’t the same as it used to be. Here are 2 major ways the landscape of Tech Manufacturing Startups have changed:

START UP COSTS:

Then:
Before the tech boom, work was more labor driven. The UNIVAC I (UNIVersal Automatic Computer I) was the first desktop or tabletop computer as it was huge. To make one UNIVAC I took 67 staff workers. The good part was it was enough labor to go around. This was a big advantage for start-ups. Back then, an hourly worker was a cheaper solution for tech manufacturing.

Now:
Work is more machine driven. The cost for surface mount technology machines, which build circuit boards for cell phones and laptops, has tripled. Not to mention you also need equipment to test you’re the board’s quality assurance. Between product testing and storage costs for inventory, the expenses can add up to the hundreds of thousands very quickly. Just know if you are a planning to start a tech manufacturing business, you need to start pinching your pennies yesterday.

FUNDING:

Then:
If you had an idea for a new product that would enhance people’s lives, you saved your own money to pay for it. Bootstrapping is a term for an entrepreneur who starts a company from personal finances. You and a co-founder would completely pay for everything by pooling your savings together and borrowing less. The good part is once the business begins to make money, you and your co-founder are in control of all operations with very little input from investors.

Now:
Today, securing funding is a lot different. Bootstrapping is still possible but difficult because technology costs have increased. It’s very possible you may need over a million dollars in earnest money before mass production can begin. This leaves entrepreneurs needing venture capital from an investor. To secure the funding, you may have to give a percentage of your business away to the investor. Once the business starts to make money the investor backing you calls all the shots and you become a supervisor of your own company.
That said, it’s still a great time to start a tech manufacturing business. Sure, things have changed but it’s even more reason to try. Who knows, you may create the next big technology must-have. Innovation is more rewarding than start-up growing pains. Go and start the next tech manufacturing business. The industry needs your creative ideas.

26 May3 Reasons why Teams are Crucial to a Productive Office Environment

Teams, either you love them or you hate them. Either way, teams are becoming more common in the workplace.   The team-oriented work structure relies on small work groups to manage tasks and or products and services.  Working in teams offer many benefits due to several employees collaborating and sharing ideas.  Here are 3-reasons why teams are crucial to a productive office environment:

Productivity

When you are working on a team, a group of people are working together toward the same goal. The entire objective is shifted toward completing the task at hand.  It increases the ability to work faster and complete tasks with shared responsibilities.  Management has found by encouraging teamwork in the workplace they can increase efficiency and generate more revenue without hiring more staff.

Inspiration

Another reason companies are pro teams is because it sparks creativity. By having multiple employees from different backgrounds sharing their different perspectives it creates an atmosphere for freedom. Being free to brainstorm about different solutions will reveal the best solution.  Collaboration with team members can also improve communication amongst the team so the best ideas can emerge.

Workload

When working in a team towards a common goal, the workload is shared among all team members. Usually, the work should be shared equally and be distributed according to the strengths vs. the weakness of each member.  Teamwork also allows for helping other team members.  After you have completed your task, go back and help a team member finish theirs.  It is important to remember that as a team, everyone is working towards the same goal.  This is why it is crucial to allocate tasks according to the strengths of each team member.  Assigning tasks to the correct people will ensure maximum productivity.

20 May3 Ways the Lyndex Nikken’s Sales Team is Becoming More Efficient

Every business desires for their salespeople to do their job well and thrive. However, it can be a little difficult when you are working with a smaller sales team. Getting your sales team ready may take time. Closing sales is easier said than done but it can be done. To help our sales team at Lyndex Nikken, here are 3 ways that are starting to make our sales team more efficient.

Automated CRM

Most companies already use a CRM system for their client management. However, as you may have noticed all CRMs aren’t one size fits all. In order to keep your sales team focused on closing sales, integrate an automated CRM. Sending follow-up and reminder emails can take up a lot of time; time that could be spent meeting new potential clients. Automated CRM include functions that allow you to track the number of attempts of contact (email & calls), total sales and how long the customer has been idle. Lyndex Nikken is in the process of researching and implementing a new CRM system that can help streamline repair service for rotary tables and live tools, and quickly answer questions regarding applications using our toolholders or angle heads. We understand that support for products is just as important as the quality of the product itself. Our goal is to have you reach the right person that can provide the optimal help, fast and efficiently.

Gamify It

Gamification is a technique to encourage engagement with your sales team and your customers. It taps into the natural competitive instinct in sales reps to deliver results while simultaneously, boosting moral. Create an awards-based gamification strategy that gives points to the salesperson with the most sales and qualified lead generation. Some businesses who have implemented gamification tactics have seen their sales team quotas increase 42 percent. Raise the stakes and make it interesting.

Feedback

One of the most important things you can do to improve your sales team is to measure their performance.   Implementing a system in place to track sales performance throughout the sales cycle allows managers to analyze and measure how each member of the sales team is doing. Try by measuring their performance now and give them goals on areas to improve.

12 May4 Ways to Increase Your Social Media Followers

On social media, follower count is one of those metrics that has many layers. If you want to grow your followers, there are tons of useful tips to try. Here are 4 Ways to Increase Your Social Media Followers.

Embed Your Media
Did you know you could share your YouTube videos on other sites? Yes, YouTube allows you to embed your video content off the YouTube platform. Having a YouTube channel is one of the best ways to communicate with your customers. Embedding those videos on your website and on your blog are both great ways for people to discover your YouTube channel. If you are sharing quality content they deem important or beneficial, they will most likely subscribe to your channel.

Be Social
One of the easiest ways to increase your followers is to talk to people who mention you. This may seem like common sense but you would be surprised how many brands don’t communicate with people on social media. It may be hard to respond to everything but making an effort to respond is essential to building relationships on social platforms. For help, download social media monitoring tools like Google Alerts so you get notifications whenever someone mentions your brand. When they do follow them and/or reply to their tweet.

Cross Promote
Cross Promoting is huge in social media campaigns. You may have Facebook followers who don’t follow you on Twitter or vice-versa. Add your Twitter link to your Facebook page, and occasionally tweet about your Facebook page. Don’t stop with Twitter and Facebook; you could also cross-promote on LinkedIn, YouTube, etc.

Blog/Website
Add buttons to your blog and even other website pages that allow visitors to share your content on social sites like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. There are apps that allow you to add RT @YOURUSERNAME to the end of each tweet shared from your site. Giving your followers the tools for them to share your content will only increases your reach to get more followers.

29 AprilVolumetric Milling with SK16

Volumetric Still

Lyndex-Nikken has partnered with Helical Tool and ESPRIT by DP Technology to deliver engineering innovation. This cutting demonstration is showing volumetric milling with our SK16 Tool Holder. The cutting parameters are as follows:

 

Lyndex-Nikken SK16 Tool Holder

Helical Tool ½” 5 Flute .090 CR End Mill

ESPRIT Cam Software by DP Technology

Material: 4140 PreHard 2.5” x 4” x 6”

Machine: Haas Automation, Inc. VF-4 30HP, 8100 RPM, 650 IPM

 

Cutting Parameters:

Tool Diameter: .500

Cutting Velocity: 1061 SFM

Feed Velocity: 405 IPM

Radial DOC: .035

Axial DOC: 1.00

Peak Load: 114%

Peak MRR: 14.0 cuin/min