John Solheim, Karsten Manufacturing Corp./PING, Inc.

Manufacturing Is Our Core

from John Solheim

John Sol-HeimManufacturing in the Valley runs the gamut from large fabrication facilities to small “mom and pop” shops like we once were when we first began making putters in my dad’s garage. Manufacturing is an economic engine that supports other industries as diverse as hospitality, construction and healthcare. For some, the word “manufacturing” may conjure up images of conveyor belts, but for me, it goes hand-in-hand with engineering innovations, providing for the more than 800 employees in Phoenix who make us the success we are today, investing in our community and enjoying the Valley’s beautiful golf courses.

At PING, we are proud to pursue our passion to make the world’s best golf clubs right here in Arizona as we have for the past 55 years. Arizona’s manufacturers comprise the heart that keeps Arizona’s economic blood pumping. We are thankful this state has become more welcoming to manufacturers, so we can continue competing on the global playing field from our hometown. Arizona’s manufacturing-friendly business climate helps keep us free to innovate, design, manufacture and service premium quality products, which is what we love about being in business in Greater Phoenix.

Manufacturers like Tesla have been in the headlines recently over plans to build manufacturing plants here, although Phoenix has long been home to automotive manufacturing as In Business Magazine editor RaeAnne Marsh shows in her cover story. The existence of the precision manufacturing that grew up around the aerospace and defense industries also raises the bar for consumer manufacturing. The improving quality of precision manufacturing, in fact, is helping drive a trend of manufacturing re-shoring to the United States. Arizona’s leaders, in particular, have recognized the vital connection between making Arizona a world leader in innovation and manufacturing and the success of Arizona’s economy. According to the National Association of Manufacturers, Arizona manufacturers pay about double the average wages other Arizona non-farm employers pay. However, manufacturing faces some critical challenges, especially from the federal government’s continued burdening of American manufacturers with ever-growing taxes, regulations and public debt loads. Manufacturers large and small as well as economic development leaders are among those who help Marsh explore what’s happening with manufacturing in the Valley.

For this issue’s “Legal” feature, Sue Kern-Fleischer spoke with attorneys from two law firms in the Valley to help business owners evaluate their insurance coverage in such areas as employment discrimination, data breaches and other aspects of business operations. Two articles deal with aspects of Human Resources — a feature by Todd Patkin on simple and inexpensive but effective methods to create strong employee engagement and a study by TeamViewer, a leader in information technology solutions, on bad behaviors of office employees and how these behaviors affect businesses. In a “Management” feature, Jack Daly shares insights on common mistakes of sales management and how to avoid them.

A special feature in this issue is “Top Tech: Leading Tech Companies Profiled,” which presents an overview of the many directions of technology in the Greater Phoenix area and spotlights a few of the leading companies.

In Business Magazine continues to offer relevant and useful information on a wide range of subjects to help businesses here grow and prosper. I am pleased to help bring you this June issue of In Business Magazine.

Sincerely,

John Solheim
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Karsten Manufacturing Corp./PING, Inc.

John Andrew Solheim is chairman, president and CEO of Karsten Manufacturing Corporation, makers of PING golf equipment. His father, Karsten Solheim, founded the company in 1966 around the PING putter he had designed seven years previously and which revolutionized the golf equipment manufacturing industry. John attended LeTourneau University in Longview, Texas, a Christian engineering college, but, to be able to assist his father in the family’s rapidly growing business, transferred to Arizona State University where he studied tool and manufacturing technology. 

John serves on the boards of trustees for both LeTourneau and the ASU Foundation. He is also chairman and CEO of PING, Inc.; chairman of PING Europe; and an active board member of the global company’s many subsidiaries. 

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