North American Oil & Gas Pipelines

FEB 2017

North American Oil & Gas Pipelines covers the news shaping the business of oil and gas pipeline construction and maintenance in North America, including pipeline installation methods, integrity management innovations and managerial strategies.

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20 North American Oil & Gas Pipelines | FEBRUARY 2017 napipelines.com C O V E R S T O R Y An Old-Fashioned Business Model Drives Linc By Bradley Kramer E veryone enters through the same door at the cavernous headquarters of Lincoln Electric in an east side Cleveland suburb. The welding equipment and consumables manufacturer has made its home in this Rust Belt capital along Lake Erie since 1895. In the last 122 years, the company has forged a reputation as a leader in manufacturing welding equipment and supplies. In addition, the Lin- coln Electric Welding School provides comprehensive training for welders. While the company's success has placed it on the forefront of the industry, its business management practices may seem old-fashioned by to- day's standards. John C. Lincoln started the company in his base- ment after being laid off in the summer of 1895 amid a financial panic that had gripped the United States. His early focus was developing and manufacturing electric motors. He even designed an electric automobile in 1904, which led him to selling battery chargers in the form of motor generators. As the electric car business faded, Lincoln realized there was a bigger opportunity with his motor gen- erators. They could do a lot more than charge a car battery. The machines could also produce an electric arc that could melt steel. From then on, the future of Lincoln Electric was welding. John's younger brother, James Lincoln, joined him at the company in 1907. As John focused more on invention, James took the reins running the business side. John appointed James as general manager in 1914, and James led the company for the next five de- cades until his death in 1965. During his tenure, James Lincoln set in place a business structure that remains largely in place to this day. WELDED To

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