If you’re in manufacturing, there’s a good chance you’ve seen Aaron Prather pop up on LinkedIn. The company he works for is a household name as well. Not only is Aaron a Senior Technical Advisor at FedEx, but he’s also an evangelist for automation and workforce development. Whether you’ve come across his robotics videos on social media, or this is your first time hearing about him, you’ll get to hear his whole story this week on Manufacturing Happy Hour.
In this episode of Manufacturing Happy Hour, Aaron takes us through how he uses fun LinkedIn videos to educate and inspire people to get into robotics and manufacturing. He shares the fantastic story of how he rose through the ranks at FedEx and established a 25-year career there.
Aaron also shares his top tips for those thinking about getting into manufacturing and robotics and what you need to do to propel your career forward. We also round off the talk with some pop culture talk and what we can learn from Futurama.
3 Quick Things from this Episode
- While many manufacturing jobs are ripe for automation, automation and robotics can create new jobs to replace them.
- The secret to succeeding manufacturing, tech, or robotics is networking and building connections.
- Manufacturing isn’t a career you need a four-year degree for. There are plenty of opportunities for fulfilling careers with a degree.
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- “Don’t think that because you didn’t go to a four-year college, you’re not going to be successful.”
- “You can do all the robotics and automation you want, but if you don’t have the workforce on top of that, buying into it, you ain’t getting anywhere with it.”
- “If you want to get into robotics and automation, look for those old dirty, dangerous job use cases. Those are the ones you go after.”
Please Scroll Down for Recommended Resources from this Episode
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What We Discuss with Aaron
- Why Aaron uses LinkedIn videos to talk about robots in the workforce
- How Aaron worked through the ranks at FedEx to get where he is now
- How networking and building connections can propel your career
- The effects of the pandemic on ecommerce
- How robots are creating jobs in manufacturing
- What people can learn about technology from Futurama
- ARM Institute, a leading research institute specializing in robotics in manufacturing
- eKami, the Eastern Kentucky Manufacturing Institute
- Ghost River Brewery, Memphis’ first craft brewery
- Wise Acre Brewery, home of the Prank Calls to Satan IPA, also based in Memphis, TN