Top ArticlesAEM seeks to give voice to a variety of industry perspectives, observations and opinions in its weekly blog featured in the AEM Industry Advisor newsletter. Whether the blog zeros in on a controversial issue with the potential to significantly impact manufacturers, or it contains some thoughtful ruminations on a lighter industry topic, it seeks to both inform and interest the Advisor's valued readership.

As the year comes to a close, let's look back at some of the most-read blogs of 2017:

  • Manufacturing Careers Build Smart Futures -- In this piece, AEM President Dennis Slater offers his thoughts on the skilled worker shortage and how, at its core, it's really a problem of perception. By reaching out to young people and helping them understand the value of manufacturing, as well as ensuring they are afforded the opportunities to develop and cultivate the skills required to be qualified for jobs in the industry, Slater says manufacturers can help close the skills gap and  guarantee manufacturing’s bright future for generations to come. 
  • Look to Ag Equipment Sector For High-Tech Careers -- According to now-retired AEM Senior Vice President and Ag Sector Lead Charlie O'Brien, individuals interested in working with cutting-edge technology should consider a career in the agricultural and agricultural equipment sector. Take your pick, O'Brien says: the IT world, data analyst, data managers, project managers, information technician, support technicians, plant scientists, field agronomists and engineering positions. The list of opportunities in the agricultural and agricultural equipment sector are countless, he adds.
  • Top 10 Tips for Successful Exhibiting -- As a trade show exhibit junkie with 25 years of experience, Candy Adams offers her best advice to maximize exhibitors’ show results in the form of 10 simple, yet effective, tips everyone can use. Whether it's information on how to construct the perfect exhibit area or setting show goals, there is something for every exhibiting company to learn from this blog. 
  • Is Construction Ready For the Pay-for-Production Business Model? -- In this piece, John Somers, AEM's director of product management for construction, mining and utility, asks readers to imagine a future where contractors bid on jobs based on actual data and accurate knowledge of upfront costs. If the information was public, those who fund projects would be able to determine an approximate price tag for the work, adding a whole new layer of transparency to the jobsite. Everything would be based on production. This future, Somer says, could be a reality sooner rather than later. 
  • You Have to Think Like a Farmer -- Hagie Manufacturing Communications Manager Amber Kohlhaas details Ray Hagie’s path to building one of the world’s largest agriculture companies. It did not start with a business plan and a loan, but rather with solving a problem. 
  • The End of the (Long and Winding) Road -- In his final article for the Advisor, AEM's now-retired industry correspondent Doug Zoerb says goodbye to the equipment industry after 38 years. Few have summed up their thoughts on the industry better than Zoerb does in this piece: "Equipment manufacturing is a tough business, inhabited by tough people, who frequently are forced to make tough decisions. But it’s true what they say – tough times don’t last, tough people do."

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