TheQualityMagazine staff has been busy hitting the streets this year, attending trade shows, visiting manufacturing plants and companies, and attending various meetings. These visits afford us the opportunity to meet quality and manufacturing professionals, as well as get a bird’s eye view of how industry is doing overall. I’m happy to report that for most of the companies and people we have met, business is holding steady or growing.

While current business conditions may be tough for some, future economic conditions are forecasted to improve, according to experts. A survey released in June by the Business Roundtable showed that most executives expect sales and capital investment to either remain at current levels or improve during the next six months.

The Business Roundtable is an association of CEOs of major corporations that represent a combined workforce of more than 10 million employees and $4.5 trillion in annual revenues.

The Business Roundtable’s findings are akin to the findings in the quality industry. The buzz at the recent Quality Expo Detroit, held June 11 to 12 in Novi, MI, was positive. Unlike some previous trade shows where attendees are happy to escape the walls of the office for a few hours, but had no intention or authority to make purchases, the attendees at this year’s Quality Expo Detroit were there to find solutions for their manufacturing problems. Attendees were busy gathering information and presenting parts to exhibitors to compare equipment, with the intention of purchasing the best solution for their companies.

Should you think that business in only good “for the other guy,” this economic sentiment is verified by you and your colleagues inQualityMagazine’s 8th Annual State of the Profession Study. The survey reveals that during the next three years, 47% of respondents expect their companies to commit more resources toward improving quality operations. As it stands now, almost one-third of the survey’s respondents revealed that the size of their quality staffs has increased during the past year.

These are all good indications that the tide is turning.

I’d like to hear your thoughts on the economy and how it’s directly affecting your company. Share your thoughts with me at [email protected] or

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