Productivity in Goodyear's Fayetteville, N.C., facility increased by 24% in the six months after Billy Ray Taylor took over as plant manager. Taylor says the secret is his people-management skills, and his willingness to motivate and engage with both workers and the local community. "This is not rocket science," he said. "You're not in a tire business, you're in a people business. It's all about people."

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