Monday, July 15, 2013

July Newsletter

How To Advance In a Multi-Generational Workplace

Being a young professional in today’s fast paced and ever evolving workplace can be challenging and rewarding.  Individuals striving toward success are going to encounter many generational differences that can foster or prohibit advancement.  A few insightful ideas and viewpoints to assist in your career advancement in a multi-generational workplace are:

  • RESPECT – Being polite and courteous is essential in everyday interactions.  Young professionals need to focus on respect as it is the foundation for how people perceive your professional character.
  • COMMUNICATION – Each generation typically prefers different types of communication mediums.  It is important to recognize there are differences, and some individuals may prefer email or a phone call, whereas another may prefer a text.  Always take into consideration your audience and how they might interpret not only what you say, but also how you say it.
  • MENTORSHIP – Develop a trustworthy relationship with a seasoned co-worker, manager or peer that you can go to for advice and guidance.  You might even engage more than one mentor; having a mentor outside of your organization will assist with an external perspective.
  • GOAL SETTING – Establishing your goals and communicating them to your superior is essential in advancement. Identifying the areas to improve and strive towards success will ultimately illustrate your value and provide a good baseline for measuring your achievements.

Competitive Exhibits New Rules

The Competitive Exhibits Awards Program consists of eight categories, which are judged each Fall.  It is the goal of the Competitive Exhibits Committee to make sure the guidelines are defined clearly and give each fair an equal opportunity.  Changes were made for the 2013 competition in order to make sure this was possible.   Please check the IAFE website for complete guidelines; categories and major changes are highlighted below.

  • Category 1 – Competitive Exhibit Display Method and/or Prop
  • Category 2A – New or Unique Single Class of Competitive Exhibits – The first paragraph must state if this in New or Unique, explain why.
  • Category 2B – New or Unique Division of Competitive Exhibits – No matter what term your fair uses (division, department, section) the intent of this category is to showcase a new or unique grouping of two more competitive classes which fit a particular process or of a similar nature. 
  • Category 3A – Show how the fair incorporated the current year’s fair theme throughout all divisions (departments, sections) and classes of the competitive exhibits area. 
  • Category 3B – Show how the fair incorporated the current year’s fair theme in a single class or contest of the competitive exhibits area. 
  • Category 4A – Create it on the Spot Contest – In this event the exhibitors create or make some item “on the spot” to be judged in traditional manner with single placements at the fair, with participants starting and completing the entire entry at the fair.  This contest entry should highlight one contest only. 
  • Category 4B – Participatory Contest – This is a contest where participants complete the entire contest at the fair and typically invites the fair guest to get involved right there. The winner (s) of the contest may be selected by a variety of means, but might typically be audience applause, timed event, scoring, etc. 
  • Category 4C – Unique Contest – This category is for any other type of competitive contest that does not fit the description of Category 4A or Category 4B or is uniquely different than a contest submitted in either of these categories. The intent of this category, thou, is to highlight a “contest” as defined above. 
  • Category 5 – New or Unique Strategy to Increase Number of Competitive Exhibitors or Attract New Competitive Exhibitors
  • Category 6 – Competitive Exhibit Display Photo
  • Category 7 – Competitive Exhibit Display Photo
  • Category 8 – Competitive Exhibit Photo Series

YPI VIP Highlight

John Johnson Jr.
Senior Advisor and Technology Superintendent
Hebron Harvest Fair
Hebron, Connecticut

John Johnson Jr., has been involved with fair since he was a child. His father, grandfather, and uncle used to pull doodlebugs at fairs across Connecticut. “I remember many cold late nights out on the bleachers watching them run,” stated Johnson. He became involved with the Hebron Harvest Fair in 2000, when he was called in to assist on Y2K issues in concessions software. He also volunteered with the fair in concessions and parking collections. Johnson graduated from East Connecticut State University in 2003 with a bachelor’s degree in computer science.

In early 2005, teens hotwired a dump truck and ran it into a dozen different buildings, causing about $1 million in damage to the fairgrounds. Johnson officially joined the Hebron Lions Club that summer during the reconstruction efforts. The Lions Club organizes and puts on the Hebron Harvest Fair.  He served as fair superintendent for the past three years, but passed the reins this year and now serves as president of the Hebron Lions Club and senior advisor to the fair. Johnson’s parents joined the Lions Club in 2007 and they work together at the fair.

Johnson owns Buddy Automotive Innovations, a software company that makes specialized software for automotive recyclers to inventory vehicles and bid on vehicles at auction. Johnson says the software company and the volunteer work at the fair each make up a full time job. “The Lions Club and fair is my hobby. Writing software is my passion,” stated Johnson.

Mentor Spotlight

Adam McKinney
McKinney Food Services
Hughes Springs, Texas

How long have you been in the fair industry?
All my life.

What’s the best lesson you have learned in the industry / or the hardest? 
Not to be afraid of change.

What’s your favorite fair food? 
Corn dogs.

What do you feel is the biggest change / challenge you have faced? 
Cost of doing business.

What question would you ask a mentor? 
Where do you see this industry in 20 years.

If you could give one piece of advice what would that be? 
Pay attention to the youth in this industry. I have a 28 year old son who has his own business. I watch and learn something new every day from watching him.

What’s the one thing during the fair you can’t live without? 
Fellowship with our fair friends.

What’s your advice on handling failure? 
Positive attitude and an open mind.

What’s your favorite quote? 
Plant a potato you grow a potato.

Who is your role model / mentor? 
My dad.

YPI Updates

  • Food from Fairs will Feed the Hungry through the Dream Big Food Drive in 2013. For more information and how to get involved, CLICK HERE.
  • Join the YPI Facebook Discussion Group to connect with other YPI members, CLICK HERE.
  • Tell us what you want to see featured in the YPI Newsletter, CLICK HERE.