Christmas is a busy time of year – for educators, for parents, for students, and for us as we all work to tie up loose ends and find time to celebrate the holidays at the same time. I hope you're all weathering the end-of-year stress with the many hats you wear, keeping students engaged in the classroom when attention spans are low and balancing life away from the school hallways.
Here at Pitsco, I oversee our Operations, which involves wearing many hats as well. On an average day, I’m involved in inventory control, shipping, receiving, returns, purchasing, printed media, and our call center.
We’ve been working on our year-end inventory and getting ready for a new year, so I can relate to the chaos you might be feeling right about now.
However, earlier in the year, I was able to step back from the fray and see my industry from a different perspective when I attended Kansas International Trade Day, an event that brought several businesses together to collaborate and support export growth within the state. I had the chance to meet other leading suppliers and organizations who can help companies expand their trade outside of the United States.
The day included several speakers, starting out with the Secretary of Kansas Commerce, followed by speakers on legal consideration for trade and distribution in foreign entities, such as China. One highlight for me was a company who shared their process for getting set up for business in Central and South America.
The event also doubled as an awards ceremony, with four companies in the final running for this year’s Kansas Governor’s Exporter of the Year Award. I got a lot of great tips as these four companies shared their experiences in how they got started in international trade, what their hurdles were, and how they now maintain and expand their international footprint.
I know that many educators spend the summer soaking up professional development. This day was a similar experience for me. It was great to hear the many successes and challenges that other companies in Kansas are working through. I also had the opportunity to meet some key players in trade within the state and federal levels, and to bounce ideas off others who are managing international trade from both an import and an export perspective.
As another busy year winds down and I’m rushing to get it all done, I’m glad that I had the opportunity to slow down for a moment and focus on the bigger picture. If you haven’t scheduled professional development for 2017 yet, I encourage you to!