LCCC works with manufacturers to create apprenticeship programs

On Mar. 20, a group of educators, manufacturers, state liaisons and manufacturing nonprofits met at Lorain County Community College for its “Power of Apprenticeship” conference. Keynote Speaker Denise Ball of Tooling U-SME gave an enlightening presentation on the Zs and Millennials, our future workforce, and how communicate effectively with them in order to attract and retain new talent as well as the need for intergenerational training. Chrissy Cooney, outreach specialist for LCCC, presented an industry panel via video that included a manufacturing company, an apprenticeship trainer at that company and two apprentices in the program. She also presented an overview of how a state-registered apprenticeship program works, including the $2,500 stipend for employers participating in the program. For more information about the Z and Millennial generations or to receive a whitepaper on the topic of the Millennials, contact Denise Ball of Tooling U at 866.706.8665. For information about LCCC’s assistance with an apprenticeship program, contact Tammy Jenkins at 440.366.4833 or Chrissy Cooney at 440.366.4325.

Denise Ball Tooling U SME

City of Euclid accepts proposals from potential buyers for buildings

City of Euclid building for sale

The City of Euclid is accepting proposals from potential buyers for the buildings at 19770 St. Clair Ave.  They would be a perfect fit for a small manufacturer/maker that also wants a retail storefront. For more information and to submit a proposal, click here.

Local man to open bike shop in Euclid, Ohio

Miss Gulch from the Wizard of Oz riding a bicycle

(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Duane Mierzejewski, owner, Bananas for Bikes)

I grew up and was raised right here off East 185th St., East Park Dr. and Windward Ave. At the age of 23, I moved away to the southeast side of Cleveland for 15 years to Slavic Village. Following that, I spent 15 years raising my children in Richfield. Personal reasons brought me back to Euclid in 2011.

I have always loved cycling — starting as a tourist then moving to long-distance riding and competitions. The 90s saw me move to commuting to work by bicycle for fun and fitness. Since I’ve moved back to Euclid, I just ride for fun and leisure, to stop and smell the roses. In 2014, I became hooked on the collection and restoration of old, vintage bicycles from the 50s, 60s and 70s. I continued to grow a nice collection of bikes and friends through various organizations and bicycle shows/swap meets. All the while, I bought, sold, traded and donated bikes from my home on Craigslist and eBay.

This past fall, I decided to go all in/full go on opening a storefront/shop right here in Downtown Euclid at 21936 Lake Shore Blvd. I have watched the area for a few years and realized that there is really nothing around here that fits my niche as an old-school bike shop. Why not? Euclid has not had any store/shop-related bike stuff for 25 years. I have a passion and a gut feeling that this may work – a place where anyone can come in, enjoy a slice of nostalgia, maybe purchase an older, vintage bicycle, browse around at a museum that have planned for the basement area. I will not sell new bicycles, but recent to much older, vintage bikes that have been refurbished and made rideable — and at a better cost than buying some junk at a big-box store. Styles will include BMX, Muscle, Single, 3-speed, 5-speed and 10-speed Cruisers with 18-, 20-, 24-, 26- and 27-inch wheel sizes.

Also, I intend to have a fully operating repair service for many bikes, but probably not the very high-end ones. I will carry a complete line of parts, accessories such as helmets, tubes, tires, handlebars, seats, water bottles, etc. The shop will be a start location to gather for rides, events such as the Euclid Art Walk, the Memorial Day Parade, and local bike ride – heck, even Bike Euclid Events. We have ample parking in back and along Lake Shore Blvd. The location should help and benefit many, especially with the expanded bike lanes and the Lakefront Renovation. I may even introduce rental of older, vintage bicycles for out-of-town visitors or for anyone who may want to ride a bicycle they had as a child 30 to 40 years ago.

LCCC hosts “The Power of Apprenticeship” event

LCCC Lorain County Community College logoClick here to register for Lorain County Community College’s “The Power of Apprenticeships” event on Mar. 20 from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m at LCCC’s Spitzer Center Room 117/118 at 1005 N. Abbe Rd., Elyria, Ohio. Here’s the agenda. All manufacturers are welcome! You should attend if you are interested in a state-registered apprenticeship program that helps employers upskill incumbent workers and allows them to hire unskilled workers who will become highly skilled workers. HGR Industrial Surplus will be there.

8:30 – 9 a.m. – Breakfast and Networking

9:00 a. m. – Welcome

9:05 – 10 a.m. – Keynote Speaker

  • Denise Ball of Tooling U-SME,

Z’s & Millennials – Your Future Workforce

10:00 – 10:15 a. m. – What Industry has to Say?

  • Introduction of Apprentice Ohio team:
    • Erich Hetzel – Apprenticeship Service Provider
    • Georgianna Lowe – Field Operations Supervisor

10:15 – 10:30 a.m. – Break; Snacks and Beverages

10:30 – 11:30 a.m. – Learn how a Registered Apprenticeship Program works

11:30 a.m. – 12 noon – Q & A

City of Euclid Annual Awards Dinner featuring a Taste of Euclid



Join the Euclid Chamber of Commerce at the Irish-American Club, 22770 Lakeshore Blvd., Euclid, Ohio, on Mar. 22 from 5:30-9:30 p.m. for the annual awards evening. Celebrate the businesses and people of the year and sample food from the best chefs in town.

And, if that’s not exciting enough, HGR Industrial Surplus has been selected as one of the chamber’s 2017 award winners! Each winner will receive an award and a commendation from state officials in attendance.

Please register here.

Bitesize Business Workshop: Accessibility for Customers

Euclid Chamber of Commerce logo



Join the Euclid Chamber of Commerce at Services for Independent Living at 26250 Euclid Ave., Suite 801, Euclid, Ohio on Mar. 19 from 8:30-9:30 a.m. for an educational discussion. The last U.S. Census indicates that 20 percent of the U.S. population are people with disabilities, whether visible or invisible. By ensuring your business is accessible, you have the opportunity to increase your customer base. They will discuss easy ways to maximize the accessibility of your business and offer suggestions on making your business practices inclusive.

There is no cost to attend.  Membership is not required.

Please register here.

Our friends from paid us a visit on Saturday!

If you love woodworking but haven’t joined the Old Woodworking Machines forum, you’re missing out on great information and amazing camaraderie. A group of friends from OWWMs came from near and far to meet up in person and pay us a visit on Saturday, Mar. 10. Thanks for stopping by, friends, and hope to see you again soon!

OWWM woodworkers visit HGR Industrial Surplus
l to r: Matt, James, Dave, Bill and Joe
OWWM Amy and James visit HGR Industrial Surplus
Amy and James
OWWM James and Matt check out a planer at HGR Industrial Surplus
James and Matt look over a Whitney planer
OWWM Bill and James looking at a welding table at HGR Industrial Surplus
Bill and James hold down a welding table
OWWM Bill, Matt and James viewing Richards at HGR Industrial Surplus
Bill, Matt and James taking in the majesty of the Richards and agog that it still had its fence and miter gauges


Euclid Chamber of Commerce Coffee Connections: Euclid Public Library

coffee at Six Shooter Cafe

Join the Euclid Chamber of Commerce for coffee, pastry, networking and a tour and to learn more about the many resources available for businesses–searchable databases of businesses, legal forms, grants, and many other tools you may be surprised to learn are available for free.

The event is free of charge and takes place on Mar. 13 from 8:30-9:30 a.m. at 631 E. 222nd St., Euclid, Ohio.

Time for a revolution

clock with change

(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Alex Pendleton, Big Ideas for Small Companies powered by the MPI Group)

How’s your Change Initiative going? Are you having fun yet?

I’m guessing you answered, “No!”

Why? Because bringing major change to any organization is a tough assignment. Entrenched people, and ideas and habits favor the status quo, and even when that status quo is no longer working, the response of the organization is typically to just give the problem more time. “This too shall pass,” everyone says. “We’ve been through rough times before, and this is no different. What worked then will work now.”

But sometimes it IS different. Sometimes, the organization has quietly aged in place while the world around it has changed to the point that what worked before will NOT work now. Sometimes, what’s needed is a revolution.

For some time, I’ve been involved with two organizations – a manufacturing company and a non-profit – both of which have faced this dilemma, and it fascinates me how much these very different organizations have in common

The manufacturing company was living in the past. It had a dominant position in a niche market, but that market had been slowly shrinking for decades, to the point that the 70-year-old factory was badly underutilized and the fixed overhead was being carried by a smaller and smaller base of business. The aging workforce was resistant to change (there was a sign in the foreman’s office reading “When pigs fly,” evidence of his disdain for any new ideas), and rejection of modern manufacturing methods made it impossible to find customers for new work. The necessary changes all required various certifications, but that was regarded as nonsense, a waste of time and money. An attitude of “we’ve always done it this way” prevailed. Once, they cleaned up the place for a customer visit, and were proud of the result. “The place looks great,” they told themselves — but it didn’t. It looked RELATIVELY good, better than it had in years, but of course the customer saw it in the context of a wider world, and to him it looked ABSOLUTELY awful.

The non-profit organization was also well-established and had been in the same location for most of its life. Decades before, they had made a major investment in upgrading their facility, but by now it was obsolete, and the city had grown away from it, leaving it isolated. However, entrenched board members had fond memories of past greatness, and they were determined that the drop-off in interest and financial support was only temporary. It wasn’t. Before long, they faced an existential crisis.

The solutions to these two problems were similar. In both cases, new leadership was brought in and changes were basically forced upon the organizations.

In the manufacturing company, the factory was substantially overhauled and modernized, quality certifications were obtained, and new markets opened up. A lot of people left (mostly by retirement – over a few years the average tenure dropped from 35 years to eight!), and those who stayed were given extensive training.

In the non-profit organization, a new leader was brought in. He had an abrasive personality and seemed hell-bent on offending all of the existing supporters, starting with the largest donors. But by the time the crisis arrived, he had succeeded in persuading a majority of the board that major change was necessary. Ultimately, they sold their building, collaborated with a couple of other organizations, raised millions of dollars, and moved to the city’s thriving downtown.

Looking back on these two sagas, it’s striking how different the picture looks than it did when we were living in daily crisis. In both cases, the consuming issues dealt with people — in one case, trying to get established employees to accept change; in the other, trying to temper the new leader’s troubling management style.

In the manufacturing company, the change was generational. A new, young leader had the vision and the skills needed to move the company forward, but members of the executive team – even new hires – struggled to perform. Operations went through five leaders in as many years before finding the right person, and the sales department went through two. Looking back on board meetings in those transitional years, it’s amazing how much effort went into trying to salvage the wrong person in the job and how quickly things improved when the right person finally arrived. There’s an important lesson there about insisting on top quality in people and not settling for anything less. Peter Schutz, a former leader of Porsche, always advised people to hire slowly and fire quickly. That’s good advice, albeit easier said than done. Once you’ve filled a critical position, it’s difficult to believe that backing up and starting over will be easier than trying to fix what you’ve got — but in retrospect it’s usually a good idea.

In the non-profit organization, the resolution was simpler, though no less painful. We ultimately realized that we had gotten from our exasperating leader all that we could — his revolution was already in motion — and all he had left to offer was his difficult personality. It was time to end the constant conflict and move forward. The new executive is an extraordinary leader and has the enthusiastic support of the entire staff and board. There still are problems, of course – non-profit organizations always face challenges — but the replacement of conflict with collaboration has resulted in a great place to do great work, and exciting innovation has ensued.

In both cases, I wonder if the rosy present would have been possible without the turbulent past. Revolution is frequently necessary, and almost always difficult and unpleasant; but I think it’s important to recognize that difficulty and unpleasantness don’t have to be new long-term realities, but can instead be short-term growth phases. So if your situation needs a revolution – and sooner or later it probably will – realize that it’s likely to be difficult and unpleasant, and that it’s possible that the right team to start a revolution may not be the right team to finish it. What is certain, though, is that once your revolution has succeeded, you’ll have a vast improvement over the status quo.

At least until the next revolution.

Bitesize Business Workshop: Laughter in the Workforce

Euclid Chamber of Commerce logo


Join the Euclid Chamber of Commerce at Moore Counseling & Mediation Services at 22639 Euclid Ave,, Euclid, Ohio on Mar. 8 from 8:30-10 a.m. for an educational discussion. Matthew Selker and Dr. Dale Hartz will present a workshop on “Laughter in the Workforce.”

There is no cost to attend.  Membership is not required.

Please register with Jasmine Poston at 216.404.1900 or