Are you thinking about starting a machine shop?
Whether you’re an experienced machinist dreaming of owning your own business or an entrepreneur interested in precision machining, an NTMA membership gives you access to all the machine shop resources you need.
Resources for Machinists Starting a Machine Shop
You’ve certainly heard the fun fact about billion-dollar companies like Apple starting in a garage. But this origin story isn’t unique to the massive tech giants. Many successful machine shops begin as nothing more than one skilled machinist with a mill and—yes—a garage.
In many cases, these individuals are extremely knowledgeable about the technical side of machining but may not have the business acumen to get from point A (the garage) to point B (an actual shop).
NTMA has financial machine shop resources to help machinists navigate growing a successful business. Take Reid Leland, Owner and President of LeanWerks, for example. Reid joined NTMA in 2009 and “scraped the bottom of the coffers” to pull together the membership fee. He hasn’t looked back since. He has called NTMA a “valuable resource for business growth and survival.”
“I met three people who helped me change the course of LeanWerks either by sending us work when we needed it most, business and marketing advisory services, or friendly encouragement and support through tough times,” Reid said.
If you’re a machinist just beginning your business journey, you won’t want to miss these machine shop resources:
- Benchmarking reports. Assess the competition in areas like executive compensation, wages, overhead costs, and more. These reports will help you set strategic goals as you start your business.
- EBITDA Growth Systems. EBITDA Growth Systems is a consulting firm that helps shops grow effectively. NTMA members can access discounts on monthly coaching sessions and quarterly training sessions!
- Other business resources. NTMA works with best-in-class service providers to give our members discounts on critical business services. Whether you need support with blockchain, payroll, retirement planning, or revenue growth, these resources can help.
Resources for Entrepreneurs Starting a Machine Shop
If you’re interested in the business side of precision machining but don’t have hands-on experience, NTMA is here for you, too. We have ample resources for entrepreneurs who see the value of starting a machine shop but may not understand all the technicalities of the trade.
Justin Quinn, President of Focused on Machining, bought his company with minimal manufacturing experience under his belt. “Through the Rocky Mountain Chapter of NTMA, I was able to meet people who helped fill gaps in my weaker areas,” he said.
With the help of NTMA members and resources, Justin has led his shop with confidence—and to incredible success. “There can be a mentality out there that you need to spend 15-20 years being a machinist before you truly understand everything. That’s not true,” he said.
NTMA offers these machine shop resources for entrepreneurs who may lack a technical background in precision machining:
- Technical webinars. If you’re looking for a crash course on a specific topic, check out our webinars page. We host webinars on the latest machining technology, presented by industry thought leaders and innovators.
- Emerging Leaders. Our annual Emerging Leaders Conference identifies young people who have the potential to shape the future of manufacturing. This conference is a great way to network with the best and brightest in the industry.
- Workforce development programs. NTMA is dedicated to ensuring manufacturing has a bright future. We offer programs focused on building up a talented workforce. Whether you’re interested in participating in a program for yourself or want to enroll your employees, NTMA has the manufacturing resources you need.
You also saw both Reid and Justin talk about the virtues of NTMA’s peer-to-peer networking opportunities, which are valuable no matter where you’re coming from. NTMA encourages networking through conferences, meet-ups, and local chapters. When you become a member of NTMA, you get instant access to hundreds of like-minded professionals who understand your industry inside out.
Back in the day, starting a machine shop was all about having the guts to put yourself out there. There’s something to be said for the “no guts, no glory” approach to business, but our industry has evolved beyond it. Aspiring shop owners have so many resources at their disposal that they no longer need to pursue such a huge initiative blindly.
Successful modern machine shop owners need guts—yes—but they also need plans, strategies, and vision to make it in today’s competitive market. Having the right tools is table stakes, and an NTMA membership gives you access to well-vetted resources with the power to significantly impact your business.
Join NTMA today to maximize your machine shop success—no matter where you’re coming from.