Last week, I was in Bonita Springs, Florida, attending the “IMC 2011” Conference hosted by Reliabilityweb.com, Inc. ( http://reliabilityweb.com ) This was the second year in a row that ITC has exhibited at that event.
To say that I have been impressed by their 2010 and 2011 conferences would be a major understatement. And, most of all, it has reminded me of the important, but sporadic, history of conferences that were specifically targeted at the men and women who contribute so very much to our nation’s economy through their process and manufacturing organizations.
More than two decades ago, the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) hosted the first such events, “ASTD Technical Skills.” Now we all know that the annual “ASTD International Conference & Expo” is the world’s largest get-together for trainers and HR folks. It is held each Spring and attracts roughly ten thousand participants. But, for half a dozen years in the 1980s, ASTD sponsored a second conference (“ASTD Technical Skills”) which attracted approximately four to five thousand industrial workers and trainers.
Why it disappeared, I do not know. I attended each year and it was a vibrant, useful meeting for those who were there.
After its absence, ITC in association with the Southern Company picked up the slack and for five additional years in the early and mid-nineties hosted a similar event. The difference was that the industries represented actually planned the meetings and provided the presenters. ITC and the Southern Company acted as hosts, coordinators and arranged the social events.
When that event died in 1997, there was a long absence of similar major events, directed at those of us committed to process and manufacturing. So, it was very rewarding to attend “IMC 2011.” That event is better than its predecessors in that the attendees are more serious about their reasons for attending. It is exceptionally well planned and provides outstanding entertainment and services that accompany the conference sessions. The feedback I heard from this year’s attendees was always extremely positive.
This year’s conference provided six types of Learning Zones: “Practical Sessions and Case Studies on Maintenance Reliability, Operations Excellence, MRO/EAM, Predictive Maintenance, Machinery Lubrication and Uptime Award Winners.”
Reliabilityweb.com, Inc. describes itself as “a specialty publishing company focused on information delivery of Articles, Videos, Audio Podcasts, Case Studies, iPresentation tutorials, Web Workshops, benchmark data, Tips, and how-to information for maintenance and reliability professionals.”
It’s publisher is Terrence O’Hanlon who has impressed me both years with his imaginative creativity and first class professionalism.
While I certainly realize that this blog may read like somebody’s press release, the truth is that those of us committed to American process and manufacturing have waited a long time to witness a revival and commitment to the men and women who continue to build our nation with their hands and ingenuity. If you are part of that contingent, you would be well served by attending the conference in 2012.
More on Tuesday – – – – –
“THE WORLD RELIES ON THE HANDS OF ITS MEN AND WOMEN”