Word From Wayne: Feeling like a dinosaur…

Welcome to our first Word From Wayne

A monthly blog from me, Wayne Read, the Managing Director here at AKP. I’ll be blogging about all things to do with our company and industry and keeping you all up to date and along for our journey.

To kick things off, I’ve got a little bit of a rant for you about the changing pace of how we do business. Now, I’m no longer what you might call a “youngster” and so I wanted to share a bit of the pain about the very fact that I’m even writing a blog! Speaking as a member of the ZX Spectrum generation and someone who was around before the internet was properly invented, I have to admit to feeling a little bit out of my depth when it comes to talking to people from a “platform” – in my day, these were shoes!

Now, it’s not like I’m behind the times with everything. I make a point of keeping up to date with all things precision engineering, and I’m not technologically illiterate – I’m more than happy using computers and modern technical equipment such as the digital AV systems I work with in my “weekend” job (more about that another time!). It’s just when it comes to social media and “blogging”, I do find it a bit tricky to feel like I’m doing the right thing.

Of course, these changes aren’t just about social media – they’re also about changes to the manufacturing industry, which I absolutely welcome. It used to be that the industry was quite insular, and the only people involved had all come “through the ranks”, usually via an apprenticeship. This meant they had an appreciation of the technicalities involved in production and it lots of ways it made the job of selling easier.

However, now there are a huge range of different backgrounds for buyers and purchasing managers as that has become a respected profession in its own right. I really love that there are more diverse viewpoints and perspectives in the industry, but it does mean that we, as a business, need to keep pace with the changes and meet our customers where they are… even if it means we need to get to grips with a blog and muddle our way through some tweets!

I can see the benefits though, as these platforms give us a space to share some of the things we do know about. We can help educate and inform, and explain exactly why it is that we’re great at what we do, reaching people who we’ve not had the pleasure of meeting face to face yet. But it’s not easy! When you run a fast-paced, growing business like ours, there were already plenty of things to fill my day without having to “engage” on social media (whatever that means!).

While we might be innovative, inventive and at the forefront of precision engineering, when it comes to things like social media and blogging I know that I’m a bit of a dinosaur! Having said that, I do recognise the importance of “moving with the times” so, I’m taking a deep breath and giving it my best shot.

So, you might just have to bear with me a bit. But I promise I’m trying! We’re even (and this is a bit of a secret, so keep it under your hats) working with a great marketing agency on a little bit of help so that we can get to grips with it all and figure out what’s going on. I don’t want to go the way of the dinosaur, so I know I have to change!