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I Spy…Happiness

Filed under: ASICentral, Community, News About ASI

Happy employees help a company’s bottom line. Unhappy employees hurt productivity. In the face of research studies proving engaged employees work harder and come up with better ideas, you’d figure companies everywhere would be scrambling to improve the workplace. You’d be wrong.

Even though creating a better work culture doesn’t cost very much, a lot of companies have yet to make the leap. Here’s where we come in: Starting this week, three ASI employees will visit 16 suppliers and distributors doing it right. The best part is that you can tag along – virtually – throughout the eight-day Counselor Best Places to Work Tour to learn what it takes to turn frowns upside down at your company.

But that’s not all.

On Thursday, November 21, you can take another short-cut to improved productivity by attending ASI’s very first Counselor Best Places to Work Conference in Santa Barbara, CA. Our 12 hot-shot speakers will teach you how to quickly and easily pump up your employees and create the kind of work culture that results in happier people – and higher performances.

The first thing you need to do is to start following Melinda Ligos (@ASI_melinda), Andy Cohen (@ASI_andycohen) and Joe Haley (@ASI_joehaley) at www.CounselorMag.com/roadtour or on Twitter (#counselortour). The road trip gang will post videos, pics and blogs every day – and you can help keep them going by posting comments and tweeting about the trip to your followers. As thanks, you’ll be entered to win a $100 gift card, along with cool road tour memorabilia.

This is the third time our Counselor editors have hit the road to visit Best Places to Work honorees and share the many unique ways these companies balance work and fun. Check out the website to browse previous blog posts for ideas from past visits you can implement at your company – and be sure you join Joe, Andy and Melinda on this year’s trip for even more tips and to meet some of the hippest, happiest people in our industry (and that’s saying a lot!).

If past road trips are any indication, there’s sure to be enough morning beer, late-night chili dogs, wacky costumes, cranked-up tunes, crazy car games and roadside attractions to put the antics described in “On the Road” to shame.

And, I’m happy to report, ASI knows all about Best Places to Work because we are one. In a contest sponsored by Greater Philadelphia Media our employees voted ASI “Best Places to Work-Large Company” (among companies with more than 100 employees), “Best Place for Working Moms” and “Best Employer for New Graduates” in 2013. ASI previously won “Best Places to Work” awards in 2012, 2011 and 2010, so I think it’s official: this is a great place to work.

How happy are your employees? What’s the best new morale-boosting idea implemented at your company? Let me know by posting a comment or e-mailing me here. I’m also on Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Hurricane Recovery Update

Filed under: ASICentral, Community, News About ASI

I hope all of you, and your family and friends, are safe and secure as we recover from this weekend’s hurricane on the East Coast.

Like all of us at ASI (which was in Irene’s path), I know many distributors and suppliers are dealing with various stages of recovery – assessing water damage, trees down, travel issues and client and shipment concerns.

Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to assist, or if some special accommodation is needed. We’ll do anything we can to help.

We’ll post hurricane-related updates at http://www.asicentral.com/. If you have a business update for us to post about your situation, please email details to feedback@asicentral.com.

Our information products and services, including ESP and LogoMall, have been up during the entire storm, with our backup generators being used during one relatively brief period. We have fully backed up technology and power in our main offices, as well as at an offsite location near Atlanta.

In coming days and weeks, please let us know if any ASI materials (end-buyer catalogs, references, etc.) have been damaged at your homes or offices. We’ll replace them at no charge ASAP.

Please also let us know if there’s anything we can do to help you or another colleague. My personal e-mail is tim.andrews@asicentral.com.

I weathered the storm at my house in N.J. and came through relatively unscathed with a power outage and flooded basement. Luckily, I had a generator from an ice storm two years ago and a friend who came to help out – who then got stranded when the water rose. He’s since made it home to his family, which is what I hope for all of you.

Let me know how you and your business fared by posting a comment or e-mailing me here. I’m also on Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Get Your Motor Runnin’

Filed under: ASICentral, Community, News About ASI

Perhaps the greatest road trip book ever written is Jack Kerouac’s 1957 On the Road. Followed in no particular order by Travels with Charley by John Steinbeck and Blue Highways by William Least-Heat Moon.

And whether you’d vote for Thelma and Louise, Easy Rider or even The Wizard of Oz as greatest road trip movie of all time, I think you’d agree all these books and movies share a common love of the open road and a thirst for adventure. Those same themes will be thoroughly explored over the next week or so during Counselor’s 3,000 mile 2011 Summer Road Tour.

Three Counselor editors are trucking cross-country on a mission to visit as many companies on the magazine’s upcoming Best Places to Work List as possible. You can follow every pit stop and diner drop by clicking here for tweets, blog posts, videos, photos and stories from the road.

You can also follow Andy Cohen, Melinda Ligos and Joe Haley (the Tin Man, Lion and Scarecrow?) via a live map tracking their stops at more than a dozen industry companies across the country. Their mission is to discover why they’re great places to work, find out what makes a winning corporate culture and take part in whatever summer craziness comes their way.

The road crew left this morning in a rented SUV packed with cold drinks, trip T-shirts and road tunes loaded on the iPod. Today’s stops: Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina.

Let me know what you think of the trip as it unfolds – and what your all-time favorite road trip book or movie is – by posting a comment or e-mailing me here. I’m also on Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.

ASI Makes Some Noise

Filed under: ASI Shows, ASICentral, Media Coverage, Members, News About ASI, Using Ad Specialties

In an ongoing effort to increase awareness of the ad specialty industry, ASI has stepped up its public relations initiatives. Those efforts really paid off during our recent show in Dallas, where we scored unprecedented TV coverage.

Former first lady Laura Bush – who spoke at the show and during the ASI Women’s Summit – generated a ton of news coverage, including a lengthy feature in The Dallas Morning News and more TV coverage than any other single ASI event to date.

Click here to watch segments from Fox, NBC and CBS. Click here to listen to a KRLD radio clip.

In addition, ASI and Laura Bush received mention on more than 278 online sites and publications, for a total potential circulation of 41 million.

And Promo Man, the new “face” of the industry, piqued the interest of the city’s ABC affiliate, which broadcast from the convention center floor to showcase a number of products. Click here to watch.

Featured suppliers in the segments include Clique Here Inc. (asi/4535) and their scented tees, Limb Gear (asi/67554) with iHoodies, Golden Pacific (asi/55549) and the solar powered briefcase, Cruzin Cooler (asi/47747) and their ride on cooler and Think Geek (asi/91123) with electric guitar shirts.

In each case the important keywords “advertising specialty” received prominent mention.

When’s the last time your company was on TV? Did the mention generate any new business? Let me know by posting a comment or emailing me here. I’m also on Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.