ABB makes it two in one day, with Rick Dolezal, formerly of Rockwell Automation, joining ABB as Manager of Channel Sales USA for the process automation group, joining the already announced hiring of Luis Duran we previously blogged.
Suddenly, it looks like a little thaw in the economic disaster news...ABB, of course, having not acquired Rockwell last year, still has about $6 billion in the bank, and can easily position itself to not only survive the current downturn, but to take market share from companies that are contracting and not as well positioned cash-wise.
The companies, both end user and vendor, who had cash going into the disaster, are doing less in the way of drastic layoffs than those who were already in a bad position, and are spending on sales, marketing and advertising. This sounds like a doh! statement, but it really is not.
Companies who continue to spend agressively, or at least do not cut their spending, on advertising and marketing and sales during an economic downturn always survive a downturn at a higher level than companies who do not.
Lest you think this is self serving-- after all, we do sell advertising-- it should be noted that there is serious research going back to the 1920s that backs up my statement.
It is important, from the end user perspective, to keep your eyes on the balls in the air, and one of those balls is personnel movement. Others are layoffs, stock price, etc. You should watch not only your own company but its peers, and also the vendors from which you buy your automation gear.
Why? Aren't we just automation and controls engineers? We're far below all this stuff, aren't we?
Well, why can't you get your projects approved? Why don't you get the respect from the beancounters that you know you deserve? Why is automation NOT a core competency in any process or dscrete manufacturing company?
Maybe it is because we spend too much time with our noses to the ground, and not enough time paying attention to what is going on around us. And then when we get laid off, it is a huge surprise.
Maybe this economic disaster will be a wakeup call for automation professionals.