By Valerie Bahoric, Marketing Manager Lynch Fluid Controls
Entrepreneurs are the economic risk-bearers who forgo the safety of traditional employment out of passion or pride, because they have something to prove, something to contribute, or a burning desire to make a difference. The importance of entrepreneurship is employment: when the risk-bearers succeed, everybody prospers.
I have had the pleasure of working with one such entrepreneur who has risked and won; Ernie Lynch of Lynch Fluid Controls. For the past 30 years, Lynch Fluid Controls has been a global leader in the design, manufacturing, and distribution of motion control solutions, and integrated hydraulic/pneumatic sub-systems. Over the last ten years, I have been part of tremendous growth in the face of ever-changing economic diversity. Here are a few of my key takeaways from surviving and thriving with a Canadian entrepreneur on a global scale:
1. Know what success means to you and empower your team to act.
I have always seen Ernie Lynch as a visionary. He envisions a grand pathway for the company and empowers his team to consistently innovate towards that goal. In 2017, Lynch opened the Research and Development Test Facility (RADTF). This facility has allowed Lynch to dive deeper into the hydraulic world through product/concept testing, engage in research initiatives with various levels of academia, quickly integrate and validate hydraulic and electronic systems, and hydraulic equipment repairs. Giving employees the freedom and flexibility to assist customers with different aspects of their projects creates pride in their work and drives them to perform better.
2. Mentor the next generation.
The training and mentorship of younger talent is critical for an organization’s survival. It is especially critical in manufacturing and the fluid power industry, where knowledgeable, experienced workers and the Intellectual Property (IP) they possess is beginning to leave the workforce. Lynch has created a mentorship program, pairing younger employees with senior staff to ensure the transfer of industry-critical knowledge and know-how, allowing newer employees to enjoy a comfortable integration into the company. Lynch offers the type of growth that people want as humans—because we’re advancing technology, our employees are able to advance their careers. It is a culture of growth, and one people are excited to be a part of.
3. Automate to compete globally.
Lynch Fluid Controls has seen a number of productivity gains from automating various parts of our manufacturing process. Operating on a Just-In-Time (JIT) basis, Lynch’s cutting-edge, fully flexible manufacturing plant runs “24/7, lights out.” With integrated machine tending robots and Flexible Manufacturing Systems (FMS), Lynch’s automation allows us to be competitive with lower labor-cost jurisdictions while providing higher quality, local support, and cost-competitive products. “We want to be able to compete with offshore production on a global basis,” explained Ernie, “and the only way to do that is through automation, in order to be competitive, advance our capabilities, and ensure our place in the market.”
The risk and work that goes into becoming a successful entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart, and it takes a lifetime of dedication and trust in your team. I am proud to be a part of one such team and look forward to the challenges and opportunities that face us in the future.