Dear Reader September/October 2023

October 13th, 2023 by Nathan Hobbs

Building a Team

By Casey Flores

It’s been more than five years since I last worked for Window Film magazine’s parent company Key Media & Research. Now, having returned, it makes something of a case study in what employers can do right.

Despite what seems like economic storm clouds in the distance (especially a commercial real estate correction), the U.S. labor market is still tight. Opportunity seemingly abounds and good talent can get a job working anywhere—so, considering myself exactly that, why return to a magazine I left almost a decade ago? I’ll tell you what brought me back.

There’s Nothing Like Comradery

Being a part of a small team that does big things—like running the International Window Film Conference and Tint-Off™ and cranking out global business magazines each month— helped me form bonds I didn’t have in my other roles. Working together to achieve big goals brings teams together in ways money can’t. Having that culture at a workplace is invaluable— whether you’re running a convention or shooting for a record number of quarterly installations. Celebrating as a team after big wins is a professional bonding experience that goes unmatched.

There’s also the trade-wide bond that’s unique to window film. I’ve found the industry members to be among the most engaged and passionate professionals of any.

Personal and Professional Growth

The magazine and I have both grown since my last time here. When I had ideas about new publications or resources, I had the opportunity to implement them. The result was, at the time, unprecedented newsletter engagement, web traffic at an all-time high, and a new print magazine (PPFMag). Those metrics are still growing to this day. These opportunities helped me grow personally and professionally and can carry over for shop owners as well. Installers who have ideas for new installation techniques or operational efficiencies should take the reins a bit. This will encourage a feeling of ownership at work, provide them growth and give reasons to stay with you instead of looking for a reason to leave.

So now that I’m back, I’m looking forward to more comradery and opportunities for growth with the great people in the film industry. I won’t be able to do this without you, and I look forward to seeing you in Virginia Beach.

To view the laid-in version of this article in our digital edition, CLICK HERE.

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