November 21, 2014
In a recent article at Automation World, analyst Alan Beaulieu encourages manufacturers to look forward to a strong growth potential for the US economy in the coming year, rather than spend time worrying about how news-popular topics will impact business.
As Beaulieu notes, when certain topics (like Ebola or stock market concerns) seem to dominate our news feeds, it can be hard to keep in perspective what the real expected impacts should be. Alarmist language, which makes for popular news stories, can also be greatly misleading and can create an undue sense of urgency in readers. In an excellent recent example, Mic.com author Jonathan Katz draws attention to a particularly inflammatory chyron from CNN: “Ebola: ‘The ISIS of biological agents?’” As Katz goes on to discuss, this kind of fanning the panic can lead to chaos and inappropriate responses. He uses the example of the media frenzy following the 2010 Haitian earthquake in which falsified reports of looting famine produced a lack of focus on and resources for the real issues.
In his column, Beaulieu does an admirable job of breaking down the real expected impacts of many international news topics with language that is free of any kind of unnecessary editorializing. Indeed, though several European nations may soon see recession conditions, the US has become so self-sufficient in many ways including energy resources, there is no real cause for alarm based on early indications of potential problems.
In addition, as we have previously reported here, the US has started to see an influx in re-shoring, and this trend has been relatively consistent since projections earlier in the year. This has meant that, though the economic climate of China may not stay stable, many companies have taken preemptory measures to safeguard against potential manufacturing interruptions.
Finally, Beaulieu ends his article with some excellent advice for the coming years: “Use the breathing room in 2015 to identify bottlenecks and improve processes. Shorten response and delivery times where possible to beat competitors and to gain market share. Be sure you have sufficient financing, raw materials, labor and capital set to go for a more robust economy in 2016 and beyond.”