June '15

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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Page 119 of 122

2 0 1 5 J U N E P R I N T W E A R || 111 ESTABLISH MENTAL BOUNDARIES This is tricky. The mind wanders; that's just its nature. Do you ever find yourself talking with your spouse, child, or friend while mentally cursing yourself for not re- membering to invoice that customer who is coming first thing in the morning? Your work brain just pushed its way into your home life. With practice, you can learn to prevent your work brain from hijacking your at- tention during off hours. Your focused attention is one of the key elements to healthy, long-lasting relationships with your spouse, family, and friends. You have complete control over this. To help establish and maintain the boundaries between home and work, I build in a transition period. When I first get home, I take a few minutes to dump my work thoughts. If I need to write a list or send an email, I do it. I give myself about 30 minutes to transition between work and home. Think of this window as a twilight zone for your brain. You're not firmly planted in work or home. Flow be- tween both and tidy up any loose business. Do this when you first get to work, as well. Are you due for a trip to the grocery store? Put a note on your phone. Now it's out of your head, and you're ready to think about work. I love what I do at work. Every day is a blast, and I'm truly fortunate. But allow- ing work to overtake other parts of my life isn't good for me, even as much as I enjoy it. When I'm with my family and friends, I need and want to be mentally present. Let go of work when you go home. Ac- tively and consciously choose to engage with your family and everything that's im- portant to you outside of work. If we don't define and honor the boundaries between work and home, it will drive us crazy. And that's not good for you, your business, or your home life. Forget achieving balance. Instead, define and honor boundaries that let all of the different parts of your life exist together. are coated with a high-quality polyester res- in and are generally available in aluminum and stainless steel. Typically, the bottles are 600 ml and produced in both white and silver finishes. You can image a water bottle using a newer mug press that has two heater bands or with older machines that have a rubber wrap. Coated bottles can be decorated us- ing heat transfers produced with desktop sublimation printers. The economics typi- cally look like this: Stainless Aluminum Steel Blank printable water bottle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $ 3.60 . . . . . . . $ 4.50 Cost of heat transfer paper and ink. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $ 0.25 . . . . . . . $ 0.25 Total product cost . . . . . . . . . $ 3.85 . . . . . . . . $ 4.75 Don't forget that every sports season ends with an awards banquet or, at the very least, a recognition program. What's more nat- ural for this event than an award plaque? Here's what you can expect to spend on a plaque for dye sublimation printing: Blank plaque. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $ 11.00 Cost of heat transfer paper and ink. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $ 0.75 Total product cost . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$ 11.75 The cost of the plaque is reasonable, and the value to a youth athlete is priceless. Re- member, providing a value proposition is the best way to gain new customers and re- tain old ones, especially when the perceived value is greater than the actual cost. Sports plaques can be that product. We're drawn to sports because of the ex- citement. With heat transfer technology, you can translate the excitement and ac- complishments of local sports competition into profit dollars. Editor's note: For more coverage on transfers, turn to the Hot Graphics Report, starting after page 80. GRAPHICS HOT SPOT STITCH SOLUTIONS continued from page 55 continued from page 24 YOUR PERSONAL BUSINESS TRAINER continued from page 20 6. Stress the importance of innova- tion: Ensure employees know you want to hear their ideas. Unless they under- stand how innovating your business pro- cesses can keep you competitive, efforts at encouraging creative thinking risk falling flat. 7. Schedule time for brainstorming and experimentation: Don't attempt to be innovative on the fly. For example, al- tering standard procedures on the pro- duction line can easily result in unsafe conditions or unpredictable, unaccept- able results. A team involved in group brainstorming sessions is likely to be more effective than the sum of its indi- vidual parts. 8. Encourage change: Broadening experi- ences is a great way to spark ideas, and short-term job swaps can introduce a fresh perspective to job roles. Encourage people to look at how other businesses benchmark, even those in other indus- tries, and consider how they can be adapted or improved. 9. Be supportive and tolerate mistakes: Re- spond enthusiastically to all ideas and never make someone feel foolish for of- fering an idea. A certain amount of risk taking is inevitable with innovation. Al- low people to learn from their mistakes. Never put off the creative flow by penal- izing those whose ideas don't work out. 10. Reward creativity: Motivate individuals or teams who come up with winning ideas by actively recognizing innovation, perhaps through a reward campaign. You could even demonstrate your rec- ognition that not all ideas work out by rewarding those who just have a rich flow of suggestions, regardless of wheth- er they're put into action. Remember, innovation is only worthwhile if it results in action. Provide the time and resources to develop and implement those ideas worth acting upon. Failure to do so not only means your shop may wallow in mediocrity, but you also may give your com- petition a chance to beat you to the punch. Good luck.

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