May '19

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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Your Personal Business Trainer BUSINESS MANAGEMENT 1 2 P R I N T W E A R M A Y 2 0 1 9 when they were about 10 years old. Were economic times hard or did they live in an age of abundance? What current events of the time shaped the way they viewed the world today? Take a closer look at what each generation considers a desirable work environment, the ideal boss, the preferred means of communications, and what their attitude is toward tech- nology. The comparison is eye-opening. WHO'S IN CHARGE? Baby Boomers have lived through some very tumultuous, yet prosperous times. If you were born between 1948 and 1963, you are a member of this extremely optimistic, driven, and somewhat egotistical generation. Baby Boomers have defined themselves by their accomplishments on the 'job front.' And, there were two very different sub-groups among the younger Boomers, too—the hippies and the yuppies. Boomers tend to prefer a more casual, team-oriented work environment. That way we can celebrate our triumphs together and no one person has to shoulder the blame alone for our failures. Besides, every failure is an opportunity to learn, right? Our ideal boss is a friendly equal, smoothly fitting in as 'one of us.' Otherwise, it is likely a love/hate relation- ship with authority. When you can grab a minute to talk to one of us, be personable, be in touch with your feelings, and be sure to engage in two-way communications. Conflicts are usually resolved democratically and consensually among Boomers. When today's business owners candidly evaluate Baby Boomers' strengths and weaknesses, there is plenty to take stock in and much to work on. For example, Baby Boomers make it a point to keep up with technology so as to not embarrass themselves in front of the three younger generations. THOSE KIDS SAY AND DO THE DARNDEST THINGS People in their 40s and early 50s have had multiple labels placed on them as a group. Along with Generation Xers, they've been called the 13th Generation. In short, Gen Xers are very independent, self-reliant, and cynical. Remember, these are the kids that early Baby Boomers made into latchkey kids. They've had to make it on their own. No one was home to prepare dinner, let alone a snack, when their school day was over. They had to learn to fend for themselves. Utilizing the skill of being re- sourceful on the job is a secret to managing Gen X employees better. Gen Xers view the work environment as one that is fun, functional, and not necessarily located at your place of busi- ness. That could be a problem when your screen-printing presses and embroidery machines are sitting in your plant. Their ideal employer is viewed as very accom- plished in their eyes. That may surprise

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