Part II: Building Business Value Series

August 09, 2016

by Linda Colon

This month, in Part II of our Building Business Value Series, we look at assessing talent shortages. This blog series examines the most common business owner issues that may detract from making your business more attractive to potential buyers and how to continue addressing your value gap.

Baby boomers exiting from the workforce are causing a talent shortage. Last month, Part I of our series shed light on the available hiring pool to replace boomers – the smaller percentage of Gen X coupled with the less-experienced Gen Y or millennials. This new demographic reality is resulting in the onset of a workforce shortage.

“Your company’s value depends on its ability to hire, develop and retain quality individuals. The right people can strengthen culture, ethics, customer relations, production, innovation and other aspects of operations. Your company’s value is further elevated if there is a leadership team or individual in place to carry on the company’s vision and mission while helping the owner achieve his/her objectives. You should be able to execute a plan to run the company effectively for an extended period of time if the owner is not available.” – CEO Chuck Richards, CoreValue Software

While Connecticut may be a leader in manufacturing, the talent shortage is a nationwide deficit, which has been years in the making. According to a July 2015 National Association for Business Economics Business Conditions survey, more than 35 percent of the respondents reported their companies experienced shortages of skilled labor during the quarter ending in June 2014.1

According to Jim Diffley, the New York-based senior director of IHS Economic and NABE survey chair, it is the manufacturing sector where skilled labor shortages are the most prevalent. With the exit of the highly skilled, experienced, boomer technicians, the new generation of precisions tradesmen are not being trained in sufficient numbers, he adds.

By applying supply-chain-management thinking to the recruiting pipeline there are several solutions small and mid-size manufacturers can use to get the people they need and get the most out of the people they have:

  • Needs assessment – examine which roles will be vacated and when and determine what type of talent is needed to fill existing positions and/or create new ones
  • Training Programs – develop the skills of the existing workforce and the next generation
  • Examine the HR function – forecast your company’s talent needs and where they can be sourced from. Work to address the perception that trade or blue collar jobs are less prestigious or less valuable than office jobs, which will help with your recruiting and retaining efforts.
  • Create an attractive workplace – ensure a compelling employee value proposition and competitive and relevant sets of total rewards programs to add to that value

Knowing what additional talent you will need in the next three to five years is critical when looking at the elements of your company’s success equation. Making the workforce assessment is part of identifying the strongest and weakest areas that are driving your business’s valuation and devaluation. From here, you can redirect your efforts in making your business more attractive to potential buyers or to the next generation of family leaders. If you’d like some help with assessing your workforce or would like to learn more about CONNSTEP’s services, please complete the form to the right of this page.

Next month, Part III will take a look at business sustainability and creating a business that runs without you.

Part I: Building Business Value Series


  1. William Atkinson, Confronting the Skilled-Worker Shortage, August 4, 2015.

CONNSTEP solved a huge problem for us and helped us bring our delivery rate to 100%. As a direct result of that, we have been awarded with an increase in business which, ultimately, will also benefit (our supplier) Har-Conn.”

CT manufacturer Pegaasus

Chris DePentima

CEO, Pegasus Manufacturing Inc.

“I see great value in the new experiences and perspectives CONNSTEP brings to our business, at reasonable prices. They’re not like consultants, they’re like partners in the business – willing to roll up their sleeves and help.”

AGRussell logo

Mark Burzynski

President, Arthur G Russell Co

“CONNSTEP has proved to be a tremendous resource for ESI. CONNSTEP has helped us to adapt to today’s marketplace and remain a quality minded, competitive global player. Our ISO/TS16949 implementation process was efficient and rewarding. I look forward to our future projects with CONNSTEP.”

esi CT manufacturer

Ron Delfini

President, Engineering Specialties Inc.

“CONNSTEP worked with FuelCell Energy to educate and facilitate Lean initiatives and to help meet our needs to establish an overall production improvement plan. This plan has been utilized over a period of time as a ‘guiding light’ to spur numerous improvements that dramatically reduced our product cost.”

Tom Lucas

Manager, Fuel Cell Energy

“CONNSTEP is a valuable partner to Hologic, providing the expertise and ‘outside eyes’ everyone needs to keep their continuous improvement on track. We are now well-positioned on a dynamic growth path and look forward to a long-term relationship with CONNSTEP.”

Greg Safarik

VP Manufacturing Operations, Hologic

“Our experience working with CONNSTEP has brought us benefits we never expected. It’s a great team to work with!”

Bruce Wheeler

VP of Operations, Metal Finishing Technologies Inc.

“The goals of the team were to reduce manufacturing lead-time, reduce floor space utilized, and increase worker productivity. All the goals were met. CONNSTEP helped us to better compete.”

Tornik CT manufacturer

Dan Rubbo

General Manager, Tornik LLC

“The Business Growth Program is working well for us. We enhanced our website following the meetings to improve our SEO and become more visible to search engines. The segment on negotiating …  promoted changes in our thinking and improved how we interact with customers. The mentoring between sessions was helpful in boosting our progress.”

CT manufacturer Colonial Spring

Bill Lathrop

President, Colonial Spring Co.

Prev Next