PCB007 Magazine

PCB007-Feb2021

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FEBRUARY 2021 I PCB007 MAGAZINE 9 Meanwhile, other friends who work in sim- ilar roles, but in slightly different parts of the market, are thriving: • A college friend, who works in outside sales in windows and treatments, is thriving as people continue to refresh their homes • A key executive for a company providing psychological care for elderly dementia patients finds the company overstretched to provide enough care to meet demand (and manage the near-constant COVID- related testing and patient positives) • Hosts for hotel alternatives, such as AirBNB, are reporting high demand for their lodging options for guests who otherwise might use a hotel Listening to major news reports based on government data, we hear about entire indus- tries and how they're faring. But look more closely, and we see that not every individual or company has that exact same experience. Some thrive, some struggle. We try to make sense of the randomness we feel, to put some kind of order to our universe. Hopefully you're feeling the li in your busi- ness, and that you see this as a good problem to have. Over the past 12 months, our cover- age has tracked many of the challenges facing PCB fabrication in these unusual circumstanc- es. Just as we're being called upon to innovate and—dare I say—revolutionize PCBs for new and emerging customer requirements, we are also faced with social distancing restrictions that test our traditional methods for produc- tion, collaboration, innovation and research. To help, I-Connect007's theme for 2021, as readers have already been made aware, is con- tinuous improvement. Our tagline, by the way, is "X = X c – 1," our way to crisply define the cyclical process of continuous improvement. ese recent challenges have likely spurred you and your team to find new ways to do tra- ditional tasks. I don't need to belabor the point by listing, once again, all the well-known new e pandemic effect is something we all feel, in some part of our life or another. It's a sense of randomness in a world that thrives on structure and order. However, I'm also re- minded of how natural disasters oen play out. In the U.S., the center of the 48 contig- uous states is "tornado territory." ese huge twisters are notorious for cutting broad paths of destruction wherever they touch down. But within that path are bits of randomness—one house le standing amongst destroyed neigh- bors, for example. In the western states of the U.S., the signature disaster situation is a wild- fire. While tens, or hundreds, of thousands of acres might be consumed by fire, still there are places, homes, and businesses spared amongst the damage. e study of chaos theory, in fact, puts mathematical structure to what oth- erwise can look like chaotic, random behav- ior. So, while there is an element of random chance to natural disasters, there is also a cal- culated, proactive planning element that can reduce or even eliminate our risk. e pandemic is an occurrence of nature as well, and it affects us with that same chaotic pattern. It's well established in other news re- porting how certain sectors in the economy have been hurt (decimated, even) by the pan- demic. My personal circle of friends includes professionals who work as: • A flight attendant (furloughed) • Executive administrative assistant (furloughed) • Outside sales in lumber (travel restrictions, temporary reassignment) • High school educator (tele-teacher, he calls himself ) • Professional musician (pivoted to lessons full time) • Restaurant owner (forced temporary closure) • Hotel and hospitality (forced closure) ese folks have all felt the negatives of the pandemic.

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