Auto show takeaways

Last night’s NAIAS Charity Preview and related events featured the usual mix of glitz, glamour and plentiful seafood. But it also was encouraging, at least to me, to see the wide range of business leaders and executives from different generations — ¬†and from throughout Southeast Michigan — mixing and mingling in truly candid and meaningful ways.

I’m not saying that sort of thing doesn’t happen every year, but I would say I saw more examples up close and personal last night. Yes, there are those who say the auto industry is at risk of a possible slowdown this year. Yes, Michigan has lots of troubles, from infrastructure that isn’t reliable to workforce development issues that are a work in progress.

But if perceptions are ninety percent of reality, I think this year will turn out to be a year of transitions, a year of optimism, and a year of innovation in Michigan. I may just be suffering a euphoric networking hangover from my many conversations last night, but it does seem like the energy and intentionality is heading in the right direction.

— Jennette Smith, CEO, Full Volume LLC


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