Contrary to popular belief, one of the first things you learned as a consultant is not how to steal a watch to tell a client the time but now to listen. In consulting, there is a simple ratio; you listen twice as much as you speak. You have two ears and one mouth, and they should be used in those proportions. That’s why I sometimes feel a little uneasy being interviewed by journalists, where I have to do the majority of the talking.
However, just before lock-down started, I spent an enjoyable morning sitting in my meeting room with the writer and journalist Tanya Weaver. I have known Tanya for almost a decade since we first met when she was writing for the magazine Develop3D. Since then Tanya has immersed herself in all things AM/3DP so I knew we were going to have a great chat. Unlike most of the interviews I have done over the years, this was going to be a little different. Not a list of prescribed questions, but a conversation, a conversation about AM/3DP, and my observations over the last 26-years.
During almost 3-hours Tanya and I discussed a broad range of topics that Tanya has how written up into two excellent articles, which have been published on the MTDCNC magazine website.
In the first article, we discuss what I see as the primary barriers for AM/3DP adoption by industry. Primarily centered around production economics and the difficulties of making an application fit the constraints of technology, rather than developing technology for an application (see my September 2020 post for more insight on this topic – as there is a solution).
In the second article, we discuss how companies can find value in the adoption of AM/3DP and whether this should be through top-line revenue growth or bottom-line productivity and efficiency gains. We discuss how new product innovation enabled by AM/3DP can drive sales and revenue. We also look at how AM/3DP can be used to reduce the seven wastes of lean manufacturing and can, therefore, be focused on production efficiency gains, waste reduction, and increased profitability.
I’m not sure if Tanya will be writing any more articles based on our conversation, but if she does, I will post the links below.