I was raised in a globally nomadic business home.
I witnessed the global nomadism movement taking place as an 8 year old eating Cheerios at the kitchen table. I watched my dad packed his suitcase and fly to places like Japan, Korea, Slovenia, France, Brazil, China. He would come back with gifts from the exotic bazaars of the Far East, sweet chocolates from Germany and postcards from Washington, DC. Even as a child I instinctively felt the beginning of globalization when my Dad would bring me Little Mermaid embroidered jackets or Simpsons sweatshirts from Korea. I was never raised wondering “how do they know about Disney in Korea.” Somehow I put the pieces together realizing that there were intelligent, English speaking professionals, highly aware of American culture all over the world.
My dad would get calls at 3am from his colleague Mr. Lee in Korea, thus exposing me to the concept of time zones. Us kids would watch Sesame Street while my dad be busy on our old computer (whose monitor seemed to fill up a whole desk) writing reports, saving files on floppy disks and playing Mai Jong. This was before the days of laptops, ipods, wifi, cds, Kindles, Bluetooth, and Blackberries (although we did have a Zach Morris looking ‘car phone’).
And somehow it all got done.
My generation (23-31) has been raised in an interesting time where the generation gap has been vast. We grew up canning vegetables with our grandparents in the morning, and listening to “Gloria Estefan” on our Sony Walkmans in the afternoon. We’re blessed to understand ‘both sides of the fence’. What it is like without technology, and what it is like with technology.
The generation younger to us (16-22) can note imagine what it would be like without a cell phone, texting and facebook. Their iPhones are like a 3rd arm… always attached.
With all these changes and differences in generations, I believe there are some principles of business that are timeless.
What did I learn from this beginning age of globalism?
- Boundaries between work life and home life are essential
- Not all the fancy latest tools are necessary as long as you know how to use the ones you’ve got
- Business only becomes more efficient if you know how to use your ‘slow times’
- You’re only effective at work when your personal life is in balance.
Lets not forget these and feel like we need the fanciest tools, the newest gizmos, the hottest new training to be successful.
There are some things that don’t change even in a global economy.