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3 minute read

10 Questions With – Ken Young, Technology Director of The MTC

1 – If you were prime minister, what would be the first thing you would change or improve for manufacturers?

Invest in making training available not only for youngsters entering manufacturing but also up-skilling for existing staff. Manufacturing is a rapidly moving sector and if we don’t keep moving forward and improving we will lose out to the rest of the world.  The only competitive advantage we can have is the quality and capability of our people.

2 – How do you see smart technology (IoT & Industry 4.0) affecting the long-term growth of UK manufacturing?

The challenge with all technology is working out how it contributes to business performance and making sure that you have the right skills to get the required improvement from it. We all know that it will happen but not many people have worked out exactly how they will use it and benefit.

3 – What is your view on post Brexit Britain – positive, negative or indifferent and why?

There will be changes and some of them will be positive while others aren’t. All we can do is make the most of the opportunities and mitigate the issues.  Companies that can adapt will gain and ones that don’t will suffer.

4 – If you were given 1 million pounds – how would you invest that in your business?

Training and development of our future leaders. The whole industry has a lack of capable leaders to take it forward and make sure we remain competitive and leading edge.

5 – If you could choose, what would you like your legacy to be once you retire?

Developing the next generation of manufacturing engineers building world leading products in the UK and selling them to the world.

6 – What’s one thing you have implemented in your business that you would encourage other manufacturers to embrace and implement?

Engagement of staff at all levels in improvement programmes. It is essential that all our people are continuously trying to improve the way we do things.

7 – How do you think the manufacturing community can collectively continue to engage and interest young people in manufacturing careers?

Manufacturing can be a truly exciting career. We need to stop being so secretive and start showing the world what we do and how we do it. It is too easy to hide behind customer confidentiality and health and safety as excuses for not showing off what we do.

8 – Any wise words, advice or tips for someone looking to pursue a career in manufacturing?

Go for it. Remember that there is much more to life than money, job satisfaction is essential to happiness. Do something you love and you will be good at it. Always look to improve as the better you are the more satisfaction you will gain and the more successful you will be.

9 – What is your proudest career achievement so far?

Undoubtedly the number of apprentices, graduates and post-graduates we have given jobs and watched grow into exceptional engineers.  The value they have added to our customers on the way is just a bonus.

10 – What’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

Whether you believe you can or you believe you can’t, you are right.

The MTC Technology Director, Ken Young / Picture: The MTC

For more information on how The MTC supports UK manufacturing, please


10 Questions With… is a regular feature where we put a variety of quick fire questions to manufacturing leaders and role models to get to know the people behind manufacturing success in the UK.

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