Slipping to success

If you think falling on purpose sounds crazy, you haven’t met the founders of Salem-based Industrial Biodynamics. Their signature product, Slip Simulator™, is proof that the concept is revolutionizing workplace safety. Based on the research of former Virginia Tech professor Dr. Thurmon Lockhart, the simulator reduces slip, trip, and fall injuries in the workplace by up to 70%.

“The goal was to create a learning environment that was safe, yet simulated very difficult slippery conditions that would typically result in a fall,” says Jon Hager, one of the original founders of the company. “By using a harness, supported by an overhead gantry, a trainee could experience worst case scenarios, fall safely, and then learn new techniques that would build situational awareness, confidence, and success in conquering the most challenging slip-and- trip conditions.”

Jon, Thurmon, Christian James and another managing partner founded Industrial Biodynamics in 2013, and the company enjoyed meteoric growth, as major companies including UPS, FedEx, and DuPont have begun using the Slip Simulator training system.

The Roanoke Regional SBDC Adviser Christina Garnett offered key assistance to Industrial Biodynamics. “We reached out to the SBDC for help to develop a marketing plan to expand our business, especially locally and regionally. The majority of our sales have been to large corporations across the country, but we are interested in exposing our product and services to midsize regional companies as well,” says Jon. “Christina Garnett has provided excellent insight into social media marketing and networking and has also supported our efforts to acquire staffing to execute our plans,” he adds.

For Industrial Biodynamics, the partnership with Christina and the Roanoke Regional SBDC has been vital, enabling them to increase their local brand awareness while simultaneously bolstering their marketing efforts.

“We offer a fresh take on workplace safety with our unique and effective safety training solution. We change the way companies discuss and address safety challenges by actively engaging the employees in an informative and fun way,” Jon says.