Talking the Talk: The Importance of Using Shop Talk in the Manufacturing Supply Industry

Working in the manufacturing supply industry brings with it a unique set of challenges to overcome. Manufacturers what to work with industrial supply partners that have deep knowledge of the tools and consumable supplies that they will need to do their jobs effectively and prefer not to buy from partners that may be new to the trade. As with any industry, these is a common language or slang in use that insiders use freely to communicate. We call that shop talk.. Although it may seem like a silly thing to be hung up on, don’t overlook the importance of using the right jargon when dealing with buyers of manufacturing supplies. There are several simple reasons which highlight why failing to talk the talk may just be an indicator that when the time comes, you can’t walk the walk either.

Know What’s Going On

On a very basic level you can’t service a client’s needs if you don’t understand them. When you’re serving as a Norton Abrasives distributor you will need to know the difference between typical tool room grinding wheels, high precision grinding wheels, and when a CBN grinding wheel might need to be employed. Clients that have an extensive tool room will know the difference and if you are presenting yourself as the authority on Norton Abrasives, you must come off as authoritative. A tool and die maker who has been doing his job for years will know when you are making things up or appear inexperienced, so using shop talk is imperative to winning their confidence. If you’re an industrial supply company in PA has a representative who doesn’t understand the slang, it can lead to misunderstanding clients  and a negative customer experience when the time comes to deliver.

Establish Your Credibility

Just as a client is likely to be using shop talk when in contact with their manufacturing supplies company, they expect to hear it back as well. When a professional uses common slang for industry terms, it shows a familiarity with the field and the products they are offering. For example, Die Max refers to a particular brand of gas springs that most die makers are very familiar with. Fibro and iFab also make gas springs but they don’t call them Die Max. Therefore when I client asks for Die Max springs, they are often looking for the best value gas springs regardless of the manufacturer’s brand. When you know your provider knows what they’re talking about it’s easier to trust their advice and opinions on what products to buy.

Relatability is Vital

Nothing is more important in any industry than trust. Whether a client is working with an SGS tools distributor or buying micro tools for Swiss machining directly from Kyocera Precision Tools, they need a service provider they can count on. Speaking the same industry language is the first step in building that trust that can then blossom into an effective working relationship. Without the ability to communicate clearly and comfortably that trust will always be on rocky footing, so knowing all the ins and outs of the industry lingo is a must.

If you’re looking for a new industrial supply company in PA it’s important to find one that you’re on the same page with. When your client knows you can speak their language you can get down to the business filling their tooling needs.