When sales are down and taxes are up or the costs of raw materials rises, companies look to control their expenses. So how do our technologists, automation specialists, plant engineering personnel, field service technicians, and after-market service companies find methods of applying value and therefore increasing sales to industrial companies in this marketplace? Instituting the "REAL" automation acronym may help to guide the thought process for future projects. "REAL" stands for: 1. R -- reliability, 2. E -- efficiency, 3. A -- adaptability, and 4. L -- lean. Relating cost savings and efficiency savings means increasing reliability -- the ability to do all of the machine or process operations better. Lean can imply implementation of a process for analyzing and thinking about unintended consequences. If this type of automation process achieves any goal, it is to help the electronics and technology people in an organization to gain a seat at the table when planning the future for the company and its workers.