Communication where it matters most: The factory floor

How line workers get neglected—and why they shouldn’t be.

I recently spent some time with a manager who is responsible for communication in the manufacturing center of one of my clients. We were talking about her plan to communicate upcoming changes to the product packaging—why they were happening but, more important, what was happening.

It’s important for the people who work on the line to know what to expect with the changes. Lack of awareness could lead to confusion, which could lead to disruptions in the manufacturing line, which in turn could affect the bottom line.

It reminded me how much I love working on communication with manufacturing employees. It also reminded me how difficult “factory floor” communication can be.

I love the manufacturing environment, because that’s where the action is. Sure, it’s easier and more comfortable to develop and implement communications with office workers. But when it comes right down to it, for a company that makes things, the factory floor is the most important place and manufacturing employees are the most important audience. What they make brings revenue to the company.

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