FMA Communications Inc.

Vicki Bell

Web Content Manager
FMA Communications Inc.
833 Featherstone Road
Rockford, IL 61107

Seeing red

August 23, 2010

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It was a simple task, or so I thought. One of the temples on my favorite pair of eyeglasses — the pair with the Transitions® lenses that are perfect for reading outdoors — broke. I really like the original frames that were less than two-years-old — an inexpensive, yet stylish design from the...

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Dumpster swimming

August 11, 2010

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Four years ago I wrote a blog post about turning large shipping containers into homes. I found the concept, process, and results fascinating. That post is no longer available, and the links it contained are no longer active — the Web moves on — but the topic of the post, cargotecture, is very...

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Largest change in our economy since the industrial revolution?

August 4, 2010

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Is there a day that goes by that some politician somewhere doesn't mention green jobs as a possible lifeline for the economy? If not the national economy, maybe a state's or city's? Many politicians are touting and campaigning on green job creation. I was reminded of this by an item on WCCO, St....

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Time's a wastin

July 28, 2010

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As noted in a speech by John Engler, president of the National Association of Manufacturers — posted on YouTube July 26 — NAM appreciates the fact that the House is spending the last week of July talking about the manufacturing economy, "but it's not enough … it's simply not enough."...

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Metcam shopfloor

Meet Metcam - a leaner, greener, meaner fabricator

July 23, 2010

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Operating seven days a week fabricating and shipping products domestically and worldwide, Alpharetta, Ga.-based Metcam Inc. has found a formula for success that has this company thriving when others are struggling to survive.

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Tell it like it is

July 21, 2010

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I don't pretend to be an economic or political expert. I'm just an average U.S. citizen who is worried about our economy and about my fellow citizens, including friends and family, who can't find jobs. I'm also a taxpayer, and I want the money I pay Uncle Sam each year to be spent judiciously and...

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New product idea-Quirky or not?

July 14, 2010

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When I woke up the other day, I had this idea for a product. Seriously, the perfect name for it came to me immediately. I’m not going to tell you what it is, because I want to do some research and see if it already exists — and also because you might laugh, or steal my idea. And if it doesn’t...

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Is this the best we can do?

June 30, 2010

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Smartass, Big Ass, dumbass ... Let me begin by saying that the opinion expressed here is solely mine and not to be interpreted as that of my employer and my co-workers or the editorial position of the publications we produce. It's my take on the caliber of some of the elected officials in our...

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What's old is valuable

June 22, 2010

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On the road again, goin' places that I've already been. Seeing things (and people) that I hope to see again. I'm just glad to be on this road again. This week I'm in Rockford, Ill., home of my employer, the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, Intl.®, the organization behind The...

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What do fabricators think of Obama's factory visits?

June 16, 2010

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Much of the media, including The Fabricator Blog and "Stamping News Brief," have covered President Obama's visits to factories in recent months. The June issue of "Stamping News Brief" asked subscribers whether they think the visits are strictly PR, fact-finding missions, or both. Here's what some...

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Signs point to more jobs

June 9, 2010

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Among the leading news items yesterday was an Associated Press story about job openings rising in April to the highest level in 16 months, a statistic that offers hope of increased hiring in the coming months.  The latest U.S. Department of Labor's Job Openings and Labor Turnover survey (JOLTS)...

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Crisis management and small business

June 3, 2010

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Google "crisis management" (with the quote marks) and you'll retrieve a list of almost 3 million results, many with links to articles about how companies can manage crises that threaten their existence.   Google "BP crisis management" (also with quote marks) and you’ll get more than 6,000...

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We don't need no education?

May 27, 2010

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Not to disrespect your song, Pink Floyd, but we really do need an education. Nothing brought that point home to me more clearly than a cell phone conversation I overheard Wednesday at O'Hare airport. A young, Caucasian male, sat down across from me to wait for a plane to Atlanta. He scattered his...

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Just happy to have a job?

May 19, 2010

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In the last few years, as more and more jobs have disappeared, those who have remained employed have considered themselves very lucky. No matter how much they've been pushed to do more with less, or how many benefits they've lost, many of these workers have adopted the mantra: "Just happy to have a...

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Fabricators on recovery and job creation

May 12, 2010

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If you didn’t receive this week’s "Fabricating Update," you missed some promising numbers about the economic recovery and manufacturing jobs. Have no fear; I'm repeating them here, because they are worth repeating: The U.S. added 290,000 jobs in April, the largest monthly total since March...

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