Uber, Knitting and Keysight

2018-08-23  |  5 min read 

Occasionally, I take Uber rides and they are almost always a guarantee for fascinating conversation, allowing me insights into very different industries and topics, yet always discovering connections to the industry I work in. Just recently, I took a ride back home after dropping off my car for the 80,000 miles service appointment at my local dealer.

The driver was in the knitting industry, working at a local yarn store in town. We started talking about the tremendous transformation in the yarn and knitting industry with trends like online retail, luxury fabrics and community building. Especially, the latter point reminded me about commonalities with our test and measurement business and the Keysight Leadership Model. Really? You might think – how can something as low tech as knitting have anything in common with high tech topics such as 5G wireless technology or Industry 4.0?

Before I get there, let me start by saying that I remember knitting from my grandmother in Germany – after World War II. Knitting was one of the cheapest possible ways to build a durable sweater or socks for the most utilitarian fashion, that we could afford in our family. Even our home decorations were done by her amazing crochet skills. Today, knitting sometimes is an expensive hobby, with exotic fabrics, a high-end luxury fashion trend or other times an artsy Etsy business with sales at a premium price.

Now, knitting and Keysight connect on two different levels:

1.   Deep Customer Relationships

  • Keysight Technologies just introduced the Keysight Leadership Model (KLM). Besides fundamentals such as capital allocations, profitable growth, operational discipline and financial management, at the very core of the model resides our customers’ success. This is achieved by nurturing deep relationships, truly understanding their problems and delivering leading edge solutions through speed and agility. This is the cornerstone of everything that we do.
  • As recently demonstrated at Mobile World Congress and described by our CMO, Marie Hattar, we illustrated some of those deep relationships with Qualcomm, Samsung, Datang Mobile among other leading players in the industry.
  • Our local yarn store is applying the exact same principles: By closely listening to their customers, they found out that there is a true need for community building, stress relief, knitting groups and sharing, and making lives more comforting and connected. These knitting groups are now a cornerstone of the business even attended by customers who seek health benefits such as lowering heart rate and blood pressure.

2.  Industry 4.0

  • The textile industry among many other industries is going through the transformation of Industry 4.0, the interconnection of information technology and manufacturing processes. On March 6, 2018, at Investor Day, our Senior Vice President of the Ixia Solutions Group, Mark Pierpoint, mentioned that only 40% of industries have been digitized, which gives Keysight a huge growth opportunity for our products, solutions and services. Connecting and analyzing information technology resources, and delivering insights require improvement across traditionally disconnected manufacturing processes. This is where Keysight helps.
  • The introduction of new products and processes to enable the yarn industry to adopt Industry 4.0 to its customer base can benefit from Keysight platforms, such as PathWave. PathWave enables sharing of analysis and results as innovations take place in new processes all the way from the design phase through validation and manufacturing test.

I hope you found this Uber detour interesting. I decided to dig out this light-yellow crochet table runner that my grandmother gifted me years ago. It perfectly brightens up my kitchen for the spring time.

Crochet table runner