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STRATEGY: 25 Years and Growing

It’s quite amazing how things turn out. As we’ve been developing our new website, social networking capability, and increasing our marketing efforts, we’ve been relying more and more on the expertise of my younger son, Matt Harrington, who’s been working for us on weekends. Matt secured a job last year with a marketing firm in Albany and has been getting some great exposure and training into the world of big business marketing.
Well, you guessed it. We’ve twisted his arm and he’ll be joining New Directions in May as our Marketing Strategist and Project Manager. Included in his daily work marketing the services of the business, Matt will also be working with Michael to develop two important and new components:  1) training and consulting advice to organizations wanting to implement social networking capabilities, and 2) training organizations on how to get the best out of the Gen X and Gen Y (sometimes referred to as Millennials) workforce. As I talk with other businesses and organizations, many are interested in both of these areas and need help with how to take the best and leave the rest. This summer we’ll be facilitating a conference for collector hobbyists who want to learn how to attract the next generation into the hobby. Just from working with both of my sons, I know that the methods used to attract my generation will not work for their generation. I’ve found that my sons scout things out using many different resources with their peers being the primary resources first, and then, if the feedback is generally positive, they venture into the unknown. (Remember, Millennial’s go from broad to narrow — they draw on a lot of resources: peers, media, research, history — but when it comes time for the final decision, they want human interaction, like when Matt makes a final decision, he calls me). This approach has some far-reaching effects on motivation, leadership, communication, and project management.
So, as you can see, this family-owned business is expanding again. Michael continues his consulting work with Paul Smith’s College focusing on strategic planning for Student Affairs. He’s also been training a number of workshops with me — a tag team of sorts — that has been lots of fun. He’s experiencing the same fascination with discovering new insights into personality, communication, conflict resolution, and managing change that participants do in their training. I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention Lisa, who has been the anchor for everyone in the office as Sue moved to Tennessee and continues to bring insight and new perspectives to trainings.
For me, it’s just great having two terrific sons to bring into the business and mentor their development. They are both great communicators and love helping people. What a way to celebrate our 25th year in business!

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An innovative training and employee development firm located in southern Vermont since 1984, we specialize in helping organizations get the most out of their people by raising the bar, inspiring potential and partnering with organizations to build a people-centered, high-engagement culture.

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